Another year has gone by and it has been full of interesting, exciting and somewhat horrifying dating experiences. I have met men of all shapes and sizes, proving to myself that I am actually attracted to the personality and not the physical. Damn, I feel so mature. I have had happy, sad and improbable times. I have obsessed, shunned, cried, rejected, been rejected, and then repeated it all over again. And yet somehow through the repulsion, the lust, the heartache and the hope, I continue to date with renewed vigor. Now I don't want to get too overly sentimental here but I do like to reflect. Unlike other years, I have actually met some men in 2012 that I truly enjoyed. Ok, get your minds out of the gutter....I meant enjoyed as in I liked spending time with them. I have learned that I may be difficult to date (something I am pretty sure I already knew but did not acknowledge) and that I don't like to play by the rules. And all these experiences have led to me my New Year's Resolution.
2013 will be my year of doing what I want.
Over the year I have taken lots of advice from a variety of women on how to approach dating. All of these women have specific points of view based on their personalities, marital status and general demeanor. I seek out their wisdom for every man I am somewhat interested in, then blend their opinions and pull out my answer. Through this process something has come clear to me. All these women tell me not to reach out, not to contact the man I want to date, not to do what comes naturally to me. In other words, don't be myself. It takes every ounce of my inner strength to resist the urge to do the opposite of this advice. And since I have not been working out recently, I am not very strong. But I have adhered to my girlfriend's advice. I even bought (ok downloaded) the book, 'The Rules'. It was like listening to a lecture from my mother - you know, 'Men don't buy the pig if they get the bacon for free'. Wait, what?
But where has all this waiting around left me? Nowhere. But waiting. Waiting for men to act like men. Or perhaps waiting for men to act like them men we hope they will be. Is it so hard to call when you say you are going to call? Is it terrible to plan ahead by asking us out more than two days in advance? Does it damage your male ego just to check in and see how we are doing? I don't think so. And in the traditional role, we women sit at home hoping you will text, call or email and obsess as to why you are not. But why don't we just text, call or email?
That is what is changing for me in 2013.
I have come to the decision that adhering to the traditional route is for women from the 50's. If I want a man, I am going to go for it. What is the worst that could happen? I could hear silence in return. He could say no. I could slightly humiliate myself. My ego can handle that. I mean I am already frustrated by the lack of communication from some of these men. So really it is a win/win for me. I get to be myself and I get my answers.
I will put my big girl pants on and take charge. I am no shrinking violet. Those of you who know me personally already know this. I say what I feel and I sometimes lack a filter. So trying to to hold myself back from reaching out to a man I enjoy, goes against everything in my body. So 2013 will be the year of doing what I want, within reason of course. If I want a man, I am not going to sit home staring at my phone waiting for him to text. I am going to text him dammit. Life is far too short to sit around and wait. I determine my own happiness and I need to control it.
The bottom line is this. We say we want men to be men but in reality we want men to women, just with male equipment. We want them to talk to us, contact us, plan ahead and be sensitive to the fact that we need a little stroking to make us feel loved. So if the men are not going to take this role, why can't the women make the move. Start the ball rolling as it were.
I can't wait for these men that I enjoy to determine my fate. The downside of liking a man is the emotional toll it takes when he doesn't act exactly as you have determined he should. But many of these men may not know how I feel as I have been mute, as I was encouraged to be. So I will change that. I will steel myself for rejection (I have been there before and I will no doubt be there again) and I will put myself out there. It isn't enough to go on a date even when all you want to do is sit home in sweats. That is only half the battle. As that horrible commercial says 'If your heart is open, love will always find a way in'. I will not only open my heart, but I make sure these men know it is open for them. And I will hope none of them ever buy me an 'Open Hearts' necklace.
I am ready for 2013. I am going to run at it full force. 2012 ended on a very high note for me and I am sure 2013 will start the same way. I am breaking 'The Rules' this year. I am living on the edge. I am saying how I feel (ok, this is nothing new) but I am going to say it to the men I want. If they say no, well I will move on. If they say yes, then....well we'll see. It is a new year. It is a new me. And I am writing a new set of rules for post-divorce dating. Because after all I am divorced and single.