It's difficult. And not a difficulty I find fun or challenge that is intriguing. Sometimes it can feel like it's complicated, way more complicated than it appears. It is most definitely a roller coaster ride! You think you are on the ride up, making some headway and then mixed signals come or perplexing situation and you can't seem to piece the puzzle pieces together to make sense of it. And then other times it is clear that you are headed down, increasing speed, faster than you can think is possible. Sometimes so fast you wonder if you are going to crash. And then, you think maybe you should just derail or jump off? Skip this? And then sometimes you get small pieces put together in the puzzle and you say, Okay, deep breath. I think I can do this. I got this. God's got this. I am not crazy. All is good. And you dig into it deeper.
Ohhh, you think I am joking???
Geez, it plays with your emotions, more than anything I have had in my world for some time. I don't like chaos. I don't like uncertainty. I like structure. I like a plan. I like knowing what's gonna happen. I like being in control of my environment. I like a routine. This doesn't fit that mold and its requiring me to look at things differently. It's making me realize stuff about myself. My expectations out of myself and life, particularly.
Maybe you haven't experienced what I have, but having had a childhood full of chaos, I strive to create anything but chaos. Having lived every moment in uncertainty, I make every effort to create certainty of the things I can. Having lived in structure, I don't know lack of structure. Having always being a part of a family who couldn't make decisions, couldn't stick to a plan, couldn't show up and live out their life without fear, drama and control, I make a plan and follow it through, adjusting it when and as is needed but never forgetting the reason for the original plan. I have benefited greatly from having a routine. I get more done by this aspect of my life and with being an entrepreneur it has been one of the reasons I have been so successful.
So when you experience the opposite in dating, it's hard to not just get in there and fix it. As a consultant and trainer, I am always evaluating and analyzing to make things more efficient, to increase production, to streamline processes, to evaluate what is working and what isn't and make changes accordingly. This is a skill I have and have adapted it to my trade and what I do well at. But it doesn't seem to be working in the dating scene. Or is it and I am just not good at it? I am learning sometimes you just have to let things ride. They will work themselves out as they are supposed to if you give it time and seek God in prayer. I don't mean that as a cliche statement. I mean it as a reality.
Either way, I haven't been able to avoid some of the emotional chaos this dating scene has brought into my world. When I say emotional chaos, I am talking about that emotional roller coaster ride. Maybe this emotional chaos is another reason I have lost more weight besides that Yoga is having some positive results on my body??? Either way, I am down yet another size. The smallest I have ever been since moving to Texas.
Sorry, that was a tangent...back to the dating scene.
If I had my preference, I would rather just accidentally meet you somewhere then have to "go find you". Seriously. You know at church, at an evening over at a friends house, a fundraiser, while working at a charity event like Ronald McDonald House where I serve monthly, or at a clients office...yah, something casual, not so out there as one individual meeting another individual and going "out on a date". Something without having to go through this routine, over and over and over.
But so far that hasn't been an option and therefore here I am, doing the online dating thing. For now. I am under no obligation or commitment to it. And I might decide I want to give up the search to "go find you" and let God drop you in my lap as I have said before would be the best way.
I must be honest and tell you, initially it was beyond overwhelming. Especially for me at the beginning when I started this process. Probably because of the dynamics of my own personal story with this and the fact that at 37 I have never dated, never had a boyfriend, and I obviously had no idea what to expect. In the first two weeks, I hate to admit it because it makes me sick, but I had 65 guys messaging me!!! Maybe you find that flattering, I wasn't sure it was so much of a compliment. I am not into myself thinking I am this hot chic and didn't find that to be what I wanted as a response, I wasn't looking for a bunch of people to have to respond to. Believe me when I tell you that THIS WAS NOT what I expected, but what did I expect??? I honestly don't know, just not that for sure.
I have responded to every email, notification, or match that I have gotten. There is a plethora of guys, but not men necessarily I want in my world. Some of you don't understand why I would/do respond to each person. I don't see any reason to be mean and I think no response creates a cold silence that is just that. It's mean. Even if I don't find you attractive or my type after looking at your pictures, reading your profile, and maybe having some dialogue with you, I think its only appropriate to be kind and respond. I will be honest and keep things where I see them. I am not into playing games. I am not into being rude. You have a purpose as to why you are on there and so do I. If you are not interested you, should say so. If I am not interested, I should say so.
Some of you have said, "Of course you would get that amount of a response Misty, you are cute, dang cute!" Really. Is dating just all about being cute? A dang cute guy or a dang cute girl? I sure hope not!
For me, dang cute doesn't mean that they like my profile description of what I am looking for. Dang cute doesn't mean we are compatible or that our values, beliefs and boundaries are remotely the same. Dang cute doesn't mean you have a fun personality. Dang cute doesn't mean you can make me laugh. Dang cute doesn't mean that you love God. Dang cute doesn't mean you are respectful. Dang cute doesn't mean you are honest. Dang cute doesn't mean you can or will communicate. Dang cute doesn't mean you are fun. Dang cute doesn't and isn't everything. But yes, dang cute is an attribute we each want and I hope to find me a dang cute guy that thinks I am a dang cute girl and wants to spend the rest of his life with me. Sure do!
So...Call me ignorant. Call me oblivious. Call me a blond brunette. This response was exhausting. Yes, you weed out 95% of them quickly for various reasons. But no matter how you look at it, it is still exhausting. Sometimes flat out discouraging. Sometimes a bunch of fun. Sometimes really frustrating. Sometimes intriguing. Sometimes exciting. Sometimes perplexing. But in reality, it truly is a mix of all of it! Just like all the rest of the things we experience in life. There are good and bad moments to each encounter.
You ask many of the same questions to every person. You have to tell the same story over and over and over. You have to try to figure out if they are being open, honest, authentic, and sincere. You have to figure out their personality. You have to figure out if you have a connection. You have to figure out if they are of interest to you or you are to them. You have to figure out if they are just another player out for a short lived girlfriend fling. You have to figure out so much stuff...
After several weeks of this process, the overwhelmed feeling not dissipating, the frustrations with dating taking control over my life, I decided to change my approach and only will get on maybe once a week. No more checking it morning and night. And then, when I made that decision, I realized I wasn't even sure I wanted to do that because I am not interested in being overwhelmed. I am not interested in making my life chaotic. I am not interested in making this difficult, any more than it needs to be or any more than I have to have it be, I will keep it simple. And keeping it simple I have. I haven't been on in over 3 weeks. Yes, there will be difficulties to it, all relationships take work, but I am not into forcing something to come about and happen in my life. If this is something that is meant to happen, then I know my God will make sure it does. He is the one who has the perfect plan for my life and when the time is right, it will be perfect just then, no sooner, no later. Completely. That being said, I will do my part, but I can't make someone show up and be there in my life who doesn't want to be and truly, why would I want someone who doesn't want to be that in my life? Not a chance. Life is too short and too full of opportunities to drag someone into it that doesn't want to be there.
Who says I have to do this check it so often, spend so much time on it, go on so many dates, etc? Yah, nobody. I will make my own rules and I will do it at my own pace. If you, Mr. Guy, don't like it that I don't respond quickly enough, you can go find another dang cute chic because I am sure they will be happy to have you hitting them up. I am not into seeing how many guys I can get to like my profile or pictures. Or how many guys I can rack up in sending me messages. I am not that kind of chic. I am not into just being hit on for the fun of it, I want to find someone I enjoy being with and want to share every moment of my life with. If you are that, I will know it in due time and if you are not, well, we will both keep searching. Or maybe I will give up searching.
Either way, know this:
I will date intentionally. I will invest time, energy, money, along with my heart, mind and soul into getting to know you. What you do from your side of the relationship is your deal. But I will be authentically me. I will not hold back loving you and being your friend. There is a reason God allowed our paths to cross and I am going to make the most of each opportunity with you.
Have you done online dating? If so, what was your method? If not, but you did dating, what recommendations do you have? Any suggestions on how to make this process not so overwhelming and emotionally challenging???