This spring and summer has been one giant transition for me. I broke it off with a boyfriend after about nine months, left an old job, began a new one, sold a house, bought a house, and moved to a new city with a toddler in tow. DAMN, I’m tired.
Now that I’m starting to settle down in my new home, I felt it would be a good idea to get myself “out there” again. And by that, I mean dating. While updating my online profiles, the excitement rushed through me. New partners! Potentially great sex! Meeting great new people and building friendships and relationships! Alas, I had forgotten….
Reasons why 1st dates are the worst:
– Staring strange people in the face over drinks. I hate this. It’s so much pressure. I’ve started suggesting walking/bowling/art gallery dates instead. It’s so much easier to have a conversation when you aren’t forced to stare at each other’s faces and when there are some built in moments for silence.
– Facing disappointment after great text-message interactions but lackluster face-to-face conversation. This doesn’t happen often to me, but when it does it can feel like a huge set back. Expectations can be built up so high that it sure does hurt when they come crashing down on you.
– The terribly uncomfortable and inconvenient nervous tummy rumbles minutes before you meet someone new. Does this happen to anyone else? I’d rather not have to say “It’s so nice to finally meet you! Now where the fuck is the bathroom…?” right off the bat.
– That awkward good-bye when the date is finished. Physical contact or wave? Kiss? Hug? GAH! I suppose I shall be an adult and just ask if it’s okay to kiss/hug/go back to their place and get the first-time-sex out of the way.
– Trying to figure out afterwards if you are still interested. Or if you’re unsure, trying to decide if you’re being too picky. First impressions aren’t always entirely accurate, right? Maybe I just need to get to know them a little bit better.
I am an extrovert. Like, an always the first to speak in large icebreaker situations, love public speaking, am not afraid to introduce myself to anyone kind of extrovert. Despite all of that, this shit is HARD for me. “Why do I keep doing this to myself?” I ask each time I sit nervously in my car before summoning up the courage to pull the keys from the ignition and open the door. I often have to remind myself that the benefits far outweigh the discomfort:
1. Variety in partners is what keeps me interested in sex (which is actually quite common for women. Don’t believe me? Go read What Women Want by Daniel Bergner).
2. I identify as polyamorous and having multiple intimate partners is what makes my heart the happiest.
3. I am a pansexual woman who is badly missing the company of partners who do not identify as straight, cis-gendered men.
Despite all of the nerves and awkwardness, meeting new people is really quite exciting for me. I have to remember not to take myself or anyone else too seriously. So, please wish me luck and help remind me to take a deep breath. This is good for me.