Wednesday, April 13, 2011

First Quarter Updates

1. The landlord for the new apartment called today and told me that the apartment is mine if I want it. This is AWESOME on so many levels I can't even stand it. I will sign the lease in a week.

2. Thanks to my 2011 savings plan, this is the first time I've signed a lease and not had to borrow money from my parents for the deposit. I feel so grown up!

3. I already bought a couch. It looks like this and it pulls out into a really comfy bed. This means that guests can stay in a room that isn't mine when they come to visit. Yay!

4. Work is still crazy.

5. I get to see my parents again next weekend! Two weekends in one month - and both sightings in Boston. How lucky am I?

6. The Decemberists "This is Why We Fight" video hits the internet tomorrow. This makes me happy.

7. In the meantime, I've been obsessed with this song, ever since Seth and Emi sang it for me a few weeks ago. Of course, I prefer their father/daughter acoustic version, but until they record it as a single, the original will do.

8. I re-read this post, and am pleased to report to you that I have checked off all of my "other goals" - I got my LICSW, took a swing dance class, and miraculously overcame the sickness from hell that lasted for nearly the entire first quarter of 2011.

So there we are, mid-April in 2011.

Friday, April 08, 2011

2011: Making Things Happen

In the past 24 hours, I've browsed wistfully on craigslist wishing I could afford to live on my own, found an apartment listing for a 1br apartment that sounded promising (and affordable), emailed to set up an appointment to see the apartment, gone to see the apartment, fallen in love with the apartment, told the one roommate I like that I was moving, told my landlord I was moving, and completed and sent the application for the apartment.

All signs point to this move actually happening.

I will have MY OWN PLACE. With A WHOLE REFRIGERATOR TO MYSELF. Also? It's about 4 blocks from where I live now.

Also, it has a deck.

Some other day, I'll write about the collection of quirky 1br apartments I've lived in over the years. I am pleased to say this one continues the trend. It's not big, but it's got lots of character and it will be all mine.

What started out as a crummy week has turned into a rather good one.

And tomorrow, I'm going to the outlets to buy myself an overpriced purse.

Thursday, April 07, 2011

Happier Things

I've been told perhaps I should post a few happy things on this neglected blog so as not to scare off the 6 readers I have left.

It's late tonight, so for now I'm going to post a list of things that are currently making me happy, and/or things to post more about later:

- This song makes me happy.

- I'm going to look at an apartment tomorrow in the middle of the day. This is an insane plan for multiple reasons (it requires that I drive to work so I have a car to get to the apartment, then park at home and grab a cab to return to work so that I don't have to drive home from work in the middle of Opening Day traffic). I have no idea if the apartment will be the right fit for me or not, but I'm tired of cursing my ever-shedding roommate every time I walk into the bathroom, and think I should explore other options in an effort to maintain my sanity. That said, if tomorrow's viewing doesn't go well, I won't be too disappointed. But if it feels right, it could be an exciting new step for me.

- Tomorrow is Opening Day! I'd be more excited if the Sox had demonstrated an ability to play the game of baseball so far this season, but I'm still excited and hopeful at the start of the home season.

- I get to see my parents tomorrow. In my city. That's always a treat (usually I have to trek north to see them). :-)

- I'm going swing dancing Saturday night. I've been taking a class. I should write about that sometime - it's been a fun experience.

- A really nice and happy thing happened at work last week. It's a follow-up to a previous post, and it makes me smile a lot to think about. I don't often get to share happy work stories on this blog (or I don't often choose to share them, I guess), so perhaps that will go up here too.

All for now. Hopefully some continued happy thoughts to follow...

Tuesday, April 05, 2011

Doubt Comes In

Doubt comes in
With tricky fingers
Doubt comes in
With fickle tongues
Doubt comes in and my heart falters
And forgets the songs it sung
Where are you? Where are you now?
- Anais Mitchell, Hadestown

When I never get past a first date with a guy and all my first dates are comically bad, it's easy to lose sight of the point of dating. My dating life becomes a source of entertainment for myself and others. That's how it's been for so long that it's become the norm.

When I get past a first date, I'm always cautious, because there's almost always a "but" - as in, "he's nice, but..." or "he's funny, but..." I try to keep an open mind, but I know myself well and I'm obnoxiously good at separating the wheat from the chaff.

Sometimes I make it to a third date, but it's rare.

Never a fourth.

I recently met a guy while out at an event. We made plans for a first date and that went well, so we made plans for a second... and then a third. Every date was a good one - we talked, we laughed, we shared bits and pieces of our life stories - and as time went on, bits of future talk crept into the conversation: "When you get your next statement in the mail, show it to me and I'll explain it to you," he said (when discussing what he does for work and me admitting I don't understand it). "Next time we go out, we'll have to go there," he said.

This was all new to me. I don't think about the future with guys I date for one of two reasons:

1. The guys aren't the type of people I could see myself with long-term.


2. They aren't talking about the future, and I don't want to jump the gun.

But this guy talked about the future. He made jokes and remembered things like what night I have class. He drove a practical car even though his income far exceeded mine. He liked to share food when out on a date. He had a million and one quirks that I found entirely endearing. He was thoughtful and funny, and he knew how to kiss.

And so a part of me that had been dormant for ages - a tiny flicker of hope - awoke inside me when I met this man and things between us seemed so easy and right. And I began to think about the possibility of a future with him... the possibility of not just a few dates, but an honest-to-goodness relationship. And I could picture it. I could really picture it.

It felt like it was actually going somewhere. And for the first time that I can remember, I stopped trying to talk myself out of or into a man, but just enjoyed being with him and slowly building the relationship.

It was during this process that I was reminded that dating is not just a source of bad date stories, but that if/when it works out, it's supposed to be a source of happiness and friendship. I haven't experienced that in so long that I had forgotten.

And then I remembered. I remembered what it felt like to feel excited about a guy, and to have a guy seem to be excited about me too. It was a new experience for me, and I was happy and optimistic about this quirky man who made me smile.

But then he wrote to me this morning to tell me that he met someone else a few weeks ago and wanted to "give it a shot" with her. He said he couldn't date two people at once, and that he hoped I would understand.

The funny thing is that my first reaction wasn't shock, or sadness or any emotion directed at him. It was anger at myself for letting my guard down. As though not imagining what it might be like to be in a relationship with him might have
somehow kept this from happening.

And so I responded to him with words that I truly believe, even though I hated that I had to write them to him. I told him that there need to be feelings on both sides in order for things to move forward and ultimately work out, so if one person isn't feeling it, it's probably not going to go far. And I told him I was bummed, but I wished him well.

And only then did I get sad. Rock-your-core, punched-in-the-gut sad. Because when I go on bad first dates, I am never reminded of what I'm missing. I'm reminded of how ridiculous dating can be. But with this man, I was reminded of what it feels like to connect with someone, and to enjoy being with him.

I was reminded of what I don't have.

In my everyday life, I make it a point not to feel sorry for myself. Though there have been times in my life when I've lamented my single status, those times are few and far between. I enjoy my independence, and I trust that I'll find a mate when I am meant to.

But just for this one day, I couldn't help but feel sad. Sad at the loss of something that on most days I don't even miss. But that today suddenly made me feel achingly alone.

And then the doubt comes in... is it me?

Am I too picky? Do I write off men too quickly?

Or did I do or say something that made this man write me off?

Was it the weird thing I said on the second date? Was it the fact that I insisted on paying for our third date? Was it that I wasn't in shape enough? Was it that I told him that I was good at my job? Did that make me sound too cocky?

I'll never know.

I just have to trust that for whatever reason, he was not my bus. And that things will all work out as they should, eventually. Because they always do.

Hold on
Hold on tight
It won’t be long
’cause the darkest hour
Of the darkest night
Comes right before the dawn
- Anais Mitchell, Hadestown