I rather reluctantly stayed away from the gym last night because I urgently needed to do something about the state of the house. There’s plenty still to do but at least I’ve taken the Xmas tree down and made some slight progress tidying up the bedroom. I need to get back into a proper housework routine, like Flylady showed me. Getting the housework into a sustainable routine was the first major achievement of TLYW and I want to get it back on track. Should be the sort of thing I can easily accomplish while we are enduring, I mean enjoying, The Hills Are Alive.
Thanks to my irresistible allure and bulging address book, the fact that my online dating profile has been taken down and that I dumped everyone I could think of to dump 2 weeks ago does not mean that I am living out The Hills Are Alive undisturbed by suitors. (Hmm. I wonder if The Hills Are Alive will turn out to be a prophecy. I should re-watch The Sound of Music and remind myself how it turns out. I hope no-one dies.) In fact, I have two dates this weekend, of which more in a moment (!)
The thing is, it is a very interesting and unusual situation because of the whole celibacy thing. I can’t think of another time when we’ve really done something like this. It was somehow different when I was having months of dental work. Maybe because my face hurt all the time and I had missing teeth and felt ugly and therefore had no interest in other people. But now … I look great. I feel healthy and strong. My skin is in good condition, my hair is glossy, my muscles are firm. I have enough physical energy. This isn’t like the other times when I’ve sworn off dating for a fixed period. It’s almost more like an intellectual exercise. Just don’t have sex for a while. See what happens. Life should improve. I am already back in the gym and now I am hoping the house is going to get cleaner. So it is kind of working out okay but also it is weird. So, in that context, my two dates.
(1) Disraeli, of course. I have met him previously, if you remember. I had dinner with him one evening a couple of months ago. Maybe 3 months ago. I liked him and he’s been sort of vaguely around and on the scene since then. We’ve been talking a lot over the last two weeks and I was starting to run out of ways to put off seeing him again in person so we are going out on Saturday. Note, I said going out. Not staying in. I am not spending any time alone with him.
(2) This other guy, Tunde. Very handsome guy, from what I remember of his photo. I met him on the dating website in I think November and I must have liked him because I sustained a conversation with him and gave him my number. I now can’t remember a single thing about him and I can’t look him up because I don’t have a profile on that website any more. I think he is 32, same as Disraeli (and outside my comfort zone, I am finding under 28 to be a non-threatening age bracket right about now). So anyway he’s been texting me for weeks if not months and I have to say he is quite a smooth operator. Talks when I feel like talking (rarely). Knows when to back off (most of the time). I told him I was unavailable for casual sex or indeed non-casual sex and it failed to deter him, in fact he seemed encouraged. So that’s why I am going to eat with him on Friday. All I had to do was say yes and he was all too keen to relieve me of the tiresome bother of thinking of a suitable restaurant. Smooth.
So here we have Dating For Grown Ups, in which you actually talk to people and find out about their personalities and develop a relationship with them instead of just shagging each other and then trying to work out whether you care to do it a couple more times. Very perplexing and confusing. Here is a navel-gazing breakdown.
- I am a textbook commitment-phobe and my comfort zones are relationships that revolve around sex, preferably with people who cannot offer anything serious, eg the Honcho, all of the Xmas Angels.
- I like Disraeli a lot and I do like what is on the table relationship-wise but also I am nervous and a bit resentful. I am nervous because I don’t like being emotionally vulnerable, which is why I yelled for the Honcho to come and save me the other day, and I am resentful because I feel like everyone wants me to be in a nice relationship that is nice and it just makes me feel stubborn. I don’t like nice relationships and I really hate couples. I would have stayed with the Honcho forever except that he was so extravagantly far from nice that dealing with him eventually became unbearable.
- Because I was and am antsy about Disraeli, I agreed to a date with Tunde just to spread the load, kind of thing. This does relieve my anxiety a bit because now there are two of them and I’m not going to get totally consumed by one person. On the other hand, I’ve now multiplied the problem. Now there are TWO seemingly normal and functional adult men who want to date me by means of talking and getting to know each other even though there is no sex on the immediate horizon.
What am I supposed to do with that. It is way, way out of my comfort zone. My comfort zone used to entail protecting my emotional assets by investing them in the Honcho and then in real life having superficial and short relationships with a series of much younger guys who look like models (and don’t think I’m not grateful for that wonderful gift).
I guess the Honcho was my emotional home. Now I am a bit homeless. It makes me a little nervous. I used to have an emotional insurance policy and now I don’t any more. What can you do. Dishes and laundry, that’s what. 1 Home point.
Billy Cotton and His Band: The Glory of Love (1936)