Last night I had a date. I am not sure I have ever actually been on a date with someone before I was somehow romantically involved with them, so this was a foreign concept to me. I was terrified.
There are many reasons I was so nervous, and at ease at the same time. The terror came from complete and utter insecurities. The words that Jeff had said to me in anger still echoed in my head each time I look in the mirror. Every time I go to put on a pair of pants, and they don’t fit. “Fat as fuck”.
This was a “blind” date; as in we had not met before. We met on an online dating site about a week ago. He had randomly messaged me off and on, and I finally gave him my number. He seemed very straight forward and honest. Blunt, with a hint of twisted humor. I liked that. As much as I liked what I saw, and heard (from phone conversations), I was worried he would not like what he saw. Yes, I am pretty… but I am very chunky now. Jeff’s words just kept echoing. Why was I letting it get to me so much? I am sure this guy isn’t as superficial to just completely go back on the attraction we were feeling before meeting, right? I had no idea. Men are unpredictable, and some just may be that harsh.
As it got closer to us actually going out, I started to doubt myself. I am not only chunky, but I am sick. I am tired all the time, I am grumpy, and weird. I just kept thinking about the pain that I randomly endure. This man is in the Military. What would he want with a cripple like me? My house is a mess, I am a mess, and my whole life is somewhat in shambles. I felt like it would be unfair to mislead him in any way. Have I mislead him? Did my happy demeanor when talking to him lead him to believe I am something that I am not? How can I even trust myself to BE myself, when I have thought I was myself and been told I am fake. I don’t understand.
I took a shower, and started to get ready. What do I wear? Do I get fancy? No.. we are going to a bistro. No need to get fancied up. Plus I was tired, and uncomfortable in general. Jeans and a t-shirt? Fuck.. why not? That is how I am anyway. Might as well. Plain back t-shirt and some jeans. Flip flops. Good enough.
While I was getting ready, my phone goes off. It’s Jeff…
“I told you that you would have no problem getting a date. I hope you have fun.”
Seriously? SERIOUSLY?? This man has been with a new woman for WEEKS now, and still continues to monitor my activity, all the while telling me how miserable I made and continue to make him. Why does he care? I am ashamed to say that he distracted me enough with a back and forth bitch-fest that I was 5 minutes late for my date. I told him multiple times to leave me alone, and stop texting me. Why was he checking all of my social media feeds anyway? Reading my status updates? My twitter? Facebook? BLOG? Why? If he is SO happy with his new girlfriend, whom he claims he has feelings for, is he monitoring my activity? Why would he even bother? Ugh… I couldn’t even bother with him anymore. He had already irritated me enough for the night.
As I walked into the bistro, he was the only one there. My first reaction: Nice. I hugged him, with a smile and a greet, and he did the same back. We sat down and started talking. Easy. SO easy. There was something about him that made me feel instantly comfortable. Perhaps it was the phone calls, and the texts exchanged beforehand, but there was absolutely something.
We talked for quite some time before we even went to the counter to order, and continued to talk afterwards. So much personality similarities, I thought maybe we would clash, but it was so easy. No clashing. Nothing he was saying was putting me off. For a moment I stopped and wondered if maybe lingering feelings for Jeff were sneaking their way into this new interaction; this new “love interest”. The moment I thought of Jeff I felt frustration, and anger. I have been feeling quite a bit of loss for him, but at this moment I felt none. Displaced feelings? Or perhaps the last week of harsh conversations with Jeff (including the cruel words he text me just before I arrived) had just eliminated that longing and loss. It’s been almost two months. Was that even long enough? It didn’t matter. Jeff left my mind very quickly as Josh smiled at me and talked about his life.
I found all of his stories completely enthralling! He had such emotion and action to his words and movements, that I doubt there would be anyone who wouldn’t be completely interested in what he was saying. He was, after all, a trainer so getting and maintaining attention comes naturally to him. I liked it. Very much.
Now, not to say I suddenly have feelings for this man. I barely know him! But there was something. What was this? The back and forth conversation. The even amount of give and take. I realized this had become foreign to me as well. Being with Jeff for so long had left we longing for a companion when it came to conversation. Jeff is a man of few words, and I could never figure out what was going on with him. So disconnected and indifferent all the time, you almost feel guilty for having emotion. So strange to have someone speak as passionately about simple things as I did. Excitement? From a man? About.. random subjects? Funny stories, and input? Back and forth conversation? What was this?!?
Don’t get me wrong, Jeff could hold a conversation when he wanted to.. but he rarely wanted to. He would let me talk on and on and on… but wouldn’t interact much. He would listen, and stare at me. Laugh when he was supposed to laugh. Smile when he was supposed to smile. Nod. Etc. Yes, this was sufficient, and yes this was polite but being a person who enjoys a good amount of interaction, I was always left feeling like I had the short end of the stick. This was different.
We met at the bistro at 7pm, and before I knew it my alarm was going off. NINE! WOW! It’s 9pm already? How times flies. We stood outside cracking jokes, and being silly. I didn’t want this to end! Was this selfish? I don’t even know this person, but somehow I felt this.. spark? This odd connection, that whether it was romantic, friendly, sexual, it didn’t matter. It felt nice and easy to just.. CONNECT. Naturally. No alcohol. Nothing else distracting us, and we are still talking HOURS later. He is still talking, and he is.. interesting. SO interesting. I couldn’t help but keep asking question after question.
Now, there are things that people saw you should not offer up on a first date. Never talk about the ex, limit how much you talk about work, and DO NOT talk about things like your auto immune disease. Dear new guy I like: I am going to be sick for the rest of my life, and it destroyed my last relationship. Wanna take his place and see if you’re strong enough to handle me? No.. I don’t think so. So what do you talk about if you have to avoid these topics? When you are so damaged, what else do you have?
Nothing. Yet, here we are talking and talking and talking… but here’s the thing. We both broke EVERY rule. His baggage, my baggage. His woes, my woes. His ex, my ex. And so on, and so on. Religion. Ugh.. bad first date topic. Did it anyway, and were both completely into it. I didn’t want it to stop, so when my alarm kept going off for my medication that happened to be at home, I had a choice to make.
“Do you have to go home?” – He could see the anxiety on my face.
“Yeah.. I do. I have to take my medication.” – There was silence. We stood in awkward silence for the first time since we greeted. “Umm.. You can follow me home… if you want. Have a glass of wine?” – I wasn’t even sure if he wanted to. To my minor surprise, he said yes.
Once we were at my house, things went great from there. I haven’t laughed so hard in so long, and all of my awkward little quirks seemed to not only NOT annoy him, but it seemed he found them endearing. We spent hours just talking and laughing. No awkward silence. In fact, we were in such conversation that playing anything on the TV was pointless because neither of us were watching. Again, this is foreign to me. I have never had someone soberly so interested and involved in conversation with me. Well, at least not like this.
Again, I am not saying that I am gushing with lovey dovey feelings, but it was such an amazing feeling to have someone SO interested in everything I had to say, and not criticize me for who I am, I didn’t even know what to do. “You’re so smart!” was said more times than I have heard… maybe ever? Asking me about my job, my skills, my brain? Actually wanting to know things about me? Strange.. Not one move towards me in a sexual way, though we had spent over 5 hours together now. Freaking awesome.
Maybe this was his whole plan! Keeping his distance, but consuming himself in everything that I had to say to lure me in and make me comfortable enough to make his move. But why? Why put so much effort into getting a piece of ass? So much emotional, and mental interaction for possible sexual contact? Seemed like it was a bit much. I don’t know. This comes back to my insecurity that stems from Jeff’s words. “He only wants to fuck you.” Guys only spend any time on girls to begin with so they can fuck them. Implying that no man is genuinely interested in me. Call me naive, but I didn’t feel like this was the case with Josh.
As time went on, and it got later and later, he got closer and closer. As he leaned his face into mine, I found myself not pulling away as I have so many times in the last few months whenever I would find myself face to face with a man. “Do you mind?” he whispered at me. Call me ridiculous, but I melted. All the thoughts of my RA, of my financial woes, my heartache, my troubles had been out of my mind all night! In this moment, as much as I hate to admit, I was elated. I got tingles, and silly feelings. I WANTED to be kissed by him. I wanted him to do this. I hadn’t wanted anything from anyone but Jeff in years. My mistake from last week completely slipping my mind, no longer feeling the complete and utter disgust. In that instant, it all melted away. How nice.
I won’t go into detail, as I really find the rest of the night very private, but it was exactly what I needed right now. I don’t know what is going to happen, or even if anything will blossom from this, but I can say this: This was not a mistake. This was not something I will regret, regardless of the outcome. If we never see each other again (which, I doubt as we have plans to), or we see each other often, last night was not a mistake. Last night was not a displacement of feelings. Last night was what I needed to let go, and feel free from the chains that is Jeff. The doubts, the pain.. the insults, and the feelings of guilt. Gone. Feeling inadequate? Not today. Last night I was told over and over again how wonderful and smart I am. How attractive it is that I have a brain, as well as being pretty. My wit? My humor? My random anger that has no reason, other than the fact that I am strange? Not a problem. It was so nice to just feel like me.. my personality.. was accepted. My bitterness, my anger, my happiness, my silliness. I know he doesn’t know me inside and out, but I have not felt this type of acceptance from anyone for as long as I can remember.
I think I am going to be ok…