Saturday, February 20, 2010

A Little Distance and a Lot of Rules

We all have ways of dealing with our emotions. Some make jokes when they're nervous, some people get quiet when they're angry and others blush when they're embarrassed.

But, when you're into someone, what do you do? Do you wear your heart on your sleeve? Or do you clam up and hide behind the rules you're "supposed" to follow in dating so as not to appear weak?

Well, honestly, I'd say that I'm the queen of the latter when it comes to the courting stages -- keep a little distance and follow a lot of "rules," mostly of my own creation. See, when it comes to being into someone, my approach has been to not be needy, and only give in when I think they're into me.

So, to get "gender bias" I try to play like a guy at first... A touch of standoffish but keep them wanting more.

Now to me, this seemed fool-proof (After all, ladies, how many times have you chased after a guy that seems to be a bit distant?) But, given the standstill I've had in the relationship department I would say it doesn't work too well.

So, what I'm coming to understand is that distance + too many rules = self-imposed obstacles to getting what you want.

Where is this coming from? Well, I saw Jackson last night. And, we had another awesome night -- which felt a lot like our first date. It was fun, natural and easy. Which is so hard to come by.

After some talking about the last time we saw each other, it's clear that a lot of mutual wires were crossed... And, hearing some of the things he had to say (i.e. assuming he was talking about me), I'm also understanding that I didn't help it by writing him off simply because I was afraid to ask questions. At that point, was it really about his ego? Or was it about avoiding the bruising of my ego? You know, I'm not quite sure. Maybe it was a bit of both.

At this stage in the game, the jury is still out on what comes next. But at the moment, all I need to know is that I'm having a good time. And while I'm not in over my head, I'll consider opening up little by little. At least until I have a reason to tear it all down. I don't have that yet...

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

The Heart of the Matter

This evening, I was talking to my dad, which is interesting -- he and I have a somewhat strained relationship, possibly because we're lots alike. 

Anyway, tonight was interesting because we got into a conversation about my love life. Now, while I know this is a weird conversation with my father, he did make mention that while he thought I had a "tough skin" that I inherited from him, that my softer, dreamier side, comes from my mother (May she rest in peace). 

 "Deep down, that tender, softer, hopeful side of you... That's your mother," he said. "But you shield your heart. And it'll take a special guy to tear that down."


Warning: Truthful revelation ahead!

Now, this made me quiet. Truth is, as much as I hate to admit it... He's right. By default, I do tend to have a rough outer shell. But, deep down, I'm a sentimental type. I dream, too. And I'm super scared of getting hurt. I mean, who isn't?

That said, I found myself thinking about Single City Guy's post, and Jackson. Honestly, I've spent lots more time than I care to admit abiding by the rules in dating and love. But lately, for the first time in a while, with Jackson... I thought I could entertain the idea of throwing the rules away with him.  But the last time I allowed myself to get so caught up, it stung. Badly. So I was treading lightly. Guess that didn't go too well.

Admittedly, even though I am still nursing the bruises... It's because I may have been into the situation more than I realize.

Damn. It bugs me to admit that.

Things have been quiet between us so I'm guessing this chapter is closed. But I guess I'm wishing it wasn't...


Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Ignoring The Rules

And, as luck would have it, one of my favorite guy bloggers, SingleCityGuy, decides he's going to post something today about ignoring the rules when you like someone.

So I post this for all of you... But also for me, since sometimes, it may be OK to throw the rules out the window. And I need to remember that.

With that said: Ignoring The Rules

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Monday, February 15, 2010

Ego Tripping

"...I am so perfect so divine so ethereal so surreal I cannot be comprehended except by my permission..." - Nikki Giovanni, "Ego Tripping"

While my tastes in men have evolved since I started dating, one thing that has pretty much been consistent has been my preferences for men with a little bit of swagger. Simply put, I prefer men with an air of confidence and maybe, even just a touch of arrogance. Not dripping and overpowering, mind you. Just enough so that (1) he always projects a sense of strength to anyone he meets and (2) isn't intimidated by how challenging I may get or how strong-willed I am.

Anyway, the objects of my affection have embodied some semblance of this confidence in different ways. For example, I was infatuated with Vincent in high school because he was the coolest guy in my class: well-liked, popular and always dated upperclassmen. The thought of landing him was a catch in and of itself. And I was drawn to that allure and the confidence he projected.

Since then, most of the men in my life have been the same way, which was quite fine by me. However, I started to wonder that after spending some more time with Jackson this weekend.

As you may know, Jackson and I have been on a little bit of a spin the last couple of weeks. First, we had a great meeting and date... Then it ends rather quickly... And then we take another run at it. But now, it's a hung jury -- mainly because the quality I'd loved so much in past flames is... Well, a little overdeveloped in Jackson.

So, I made plans to see him on Friday night, which went well: really low key, nice glass of wine, good chatter and some warm comfort. In short, a lovely night between friends.

Anyway, after falling asleep, I woke up the next morning happy with the night before. So, when we started talking about dating and hook-ups, Jackson made it a point to say that for some reason, women have never been able to just "hook-up" with him. Somehow, attachment always gets in the way (mentally and emotionally), and that he manages to establish a strong physical connection with women, even if his "performance" is sub-par. In short, he's just good at being him...

Now, I could appreciate confidence in what you bring to the table -- physically or otherwise. However, his tone and arrogance had instantly turned me off, making me much less attracted to him in a matter of moments. I suddenly felt like he'd reduced our connection to this one-sided thing in which I would helplessly be fawning all over him. And while I had indeed been swept away in our meeting and initial encounters, in my mind, it was directly connected to the vibe I was feeling between us -- not because of a magical spell I was under.

I don't think I misunderstood what he was trying to say. But, I admit that it actually disappointed me and to some extent made me a bit self-conscious about us. And I'm thinking that's not so good...

I mean, what could explain why he'd feel the need to say that? Now that's the part that's tripping me out...

Sunday, February 14, 2010

A Single Heart's Manifesto to Cupid

Note: So what, pray tell, is a relationship blog without a Valentine's Day post? Although it may be cliche, it's kind of a mandate, I'm sure of it.

I just got back from a very brief excursion out on the town, only to realize just how many singles there are out there, with many of them looking for the possibility of love. Honestly, maybe I assumed more of the world was paired up, but a being out tonight quickly told me otherwise. All the anti-Valentine's Day pub crawlers... And all those eager souls, hanging on to a glimmer of hope that they can find someone who can help them forget even for a moment that they're single...

In any event, I've decided to take advantage of this "holiday" to pay tribute to the very emotion at the heart of it -- the one that has been the inspiration for some of the best music ever recorded, at the core of some of history's greatest stories, at the root of some of Hollywood's most fascinating tales (on and off screen) and is the center of what many bloggers like me are ultimately trying to dissect: LOVE.

My way of doing this? Writing a manifesto -- or my declaration -- to Cupid. Hope he's paying attention. And hope you enjoy!

A Single Heart's Manifesto to Cupid

I, being of sound Mind & Heart do declare that:
  1. I am a single woman
  2. I am open to finding someone with long-term potential
  3. I have had experiences in love that have impacted some of the choices I've made
  4. I will not use previous relationships as a "yardstick" to evaluate current or future dating prospects
  5. I will not try to make a dating prospect something they're not
  6. I will allow myself to be pleasantly surprised
  7. I will not make an attempt to minimize something when it's going well
  8. I will manage my own expectations and not build someone up to be what they're not
  9. I intend to view my single status (while I am single) as an opportunity to enjoy myself while taking the time to find someone deserving of me
  10. My single status is not absolute and can change at any time. That at any point, should I choose to be open to it, I can allow myself the chance to trust and be with someone who can bring out the best in me
Yours Truly,
The RD