The Worst Date I’ve Ever Had.

Dear Blog,

Back in 2015, newly single and hoping to find the man I will eventually marry (still working on that), I was browsing dating websites like they were facebook, painstakingly reading countless profiles for anyone who vaguely suited my set of preferences. I was young and naive but thought I was ready for the bigger things in life. Silly 22 year old me.

Anyway, one day, a few weeks before Christmas, a dude messaged me. I browsed his profile, analysed all his photos and decided to give him a chance. The first 2 dates were OK but there wasn’t much chemistry between us. That became all the more clear on date number 3.

On the morning of our third date, I was getting ready for what I thought was going to be a nice walk around a local park with this guy and his dog. It sounded like a good bonding opportunity and something I desperately needed as I was becoming very aware of the lack of ‘spark’ between us.
During the drive to pick me up, this guy had had a sudden change of plan. He decided that we should go to his house and watch a movie instead. I was made aware of the plan change once he had already picked me up…
I wasn’t exactly thrilled nor am I the type of person to ‘Netflix and chill’ that quickly into knowing someone. My day got progressively worse from there.

The guy hadn’t told me that he was still living at home with his parents so once he opened his front door, both his mum and dad were there. His mum hugged me, offered me food, I politely declined before being abandoned in the hallway while everyone else went into the kitchen. It was the longest minute of my life and there was a distinct lack of photos or art work on the walls to provide me with at least a little entertainment.
Once the dude returned, we headed upstairs to his bedroom…

…Wow…

…I walked into a bedroom that could have equally belonged to a teenage boy, not someone a year older than me. Clothes had been thrown across the floor, a stack of plates were towering over his computer and the room just stank of stale boy. It was very obvious that this guy hadn’t thought about inviting me around until the moment he drove away from this pigsty. Being a little taken back, I sat on his bed while he flicked through the movies, pre-downloaded on his PS3.

That’s when I noticed it.

Right in the middle of his grey duvet cover was a huge, the size of a grapefruit huge, ketchup stain. Now call me high maintenance but if you invite a girl over to your house, you might want to change your bed sheets first!
He had picked The Hunger Games to watch. Great, two and a half hours of avoiding this stain. As the movie played on, the guy put his arm around me and invited me in for a cuddle. I was so rigid, not really wanting to be there and trying to avoid this stain which I had managed to curl my body around.
We stayed like that for a little bit until his mum strolled in and asked him if he wanted anything to eat, I quickly jumped up, which probably made me look more suspisious. He asked for some sausage rolls. No one asked me if I wanted anything, seemingly having learned from our previous encounter.

A short while later, his mum reappeared with a plate of about 6 sausage rolls and a bottle of ketchup. It became evident that this was a regular meal of his and the ‘sauce’ of the ketchup stain (I couldn’t resist making that joke).
So we were about halfway through the movie, he was nomming away on a pile of sausage rolls while I remained rigid, wondering if this was now my life when his older brother wondered into the room (does anybody knock anymore?!) carrying his baby son. He introduced himself and gave me a brief interrogation and thrust the baby into my dates arms.

So to recap, there is now me, my date, a baby and a ketchup stain. It is getting  very crowded on this single bed. Now I think babies are great and the day I have my own excites me but I haven’t had much contact or experience with them so I just sort of ignored this poor kid. His uncle was doing most of the entertaining anyway.

Nothing else happened during the movie, but I was so overwhelmed by my experienced that I asked to go home and promptly (and gently) let him know that I didn’t think things were working out. He didn’t take it very well, called me manipulative but we had only met 3 times. I don’t even know if he’d had a girlfriend before, that’s what little I knew about him… But he clearly left a lasting impression. I will never look at ketchup the same again.

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Ready To Move On.

Dear Blog,

It has been almost 5 months since I re-entered the single zone. It hasn’t been an easy journey to get to this stage, with so many little thing reminding me of the person I honestly thought I would settle down with. So many dreams that could only have been shared together, gone to waste. But there isn’t a day that goes by where I regret my decision to walk away. And I know he feels it too.
As unexpected as it was, our break up was the right decision for both of us and 5 months on, I finally feel free. I no longer love him, long for his company. I am over him.

That feels so good to say. I could shout it from the roof tops: “I’M OVER YOU!”

I finally feel ready to begin the “Don’t die alone” quest for the 4th time on my 25 years on this planet. However, this time, things will be very different.
Before I met my most recent Ex (wow, that sounds awful), I had only been single a few months. Within 6 weeks of my previous relationship ending, I had made an online dating profile and actively seeking companion number 3. Looking back, I was not in the right place in my life for another relationship and the desire to be love and have security ultimately overrode my rational thinking. That’s not to say that I did not give my Ex my all. I put all my effort into our relationship but perhaps because of my initial thought process, I sabotaged us before we even had time to bloom.

This mistake will not happen again as I have consciously spent the last 5 months reflecting on my behaviours during the previous 2 years. What I did, why I acted in such ways as well as what I actually want out of a relationship. I was a fool and a bully for ever thinking I could mold someone into whoever I wanted. So no matter how long it takes, I will find someone who fits.

Don’t get me wrong, I am not searching for my soul mate. I honestly don’t believe they exist. I believe that multiple people can be ‘The One’. I just need to find one of them. I want to be with someone and think, no matter how difficult the time might be, that this is enough. No more wondering if the grass is greener, just simply being content with life and knowing that what I have is not worth losing. A grown up relationship.

There is a huge adrenaline rush when I think about the future and who I may end up marrying. Weather I am 5 or 25, I am still a woman and ultimately, marriage and children is what I see before me.  And as you get older, the more your focus shifts when looking for a potential mate. Back when you were a hormone driven teenager, it was all about looks and whoever would kiss you. That focus shifts gradually from looks, to personality to who can provide the support and partnership needed to raise a family and maintain a healthy relationship. It is a fascinating thing to watch, especially when it happens to those around you. You might have a friend from school who always dated the most popular guy, the player, only for them to now be in their mid twenties and settled down with someone of a complete opposite personality. At least that’s how I can view my life.

While I have no current intentions of actively hunting for the next ‘love of my life’, I am admitting that I am healed and ready to progress into 2019 with a clear head. Who knows what our lives will be like in a years time? It’s all rather exciting…