Things I no longer do, and other thoughts.

I got to thinking recently about personal progress. You know, life development, personal growth, progression, all that stuff. One thing about keeping a journal or writing a blog is it’s documented for us to see – if we can actually see the patterns and behaviors and identify how they’ve changed.

It actually makes me wonder whether people who aren’t self-aware keep journals. Is it possible to document your activities and behaviors and feelings and not truly see yourself? Curious.

Anyway. 

The season from mid-July to early September – being the anniversaries of my separation, moving out, and my birthday – has me in a reflective mood. Yes, I’m one year older. This morning, while doing a whole lot of nothing in bed, I got to thinking. What things might I have done before that I would no longer do?

I used to focus so much on whether someone liked me, I forgot to step back and consider whether I really liked them in return. I put a higher premium on how they made me feel than on anything else.

I definitely don’t do that anymore. Fox and HWSNBN were solid examples of my ability to end something like this, because he relationship wasn’t right.

A couple paragraphs and I’ve summed up the biggest personal growth in my life. I can argue in some ways I’m a classic example of the impact of an emotionally absent father. He’s not that way anymore, I told him everything I needed to say about the impact, and he drilled into me that I had the capability to move past anything.

So I did. I couldn’t be more proud of myself, frankly.

I don’t put a premium on intelligence and banter and varied interests above all else.

These attributes are what hooked me on my ex-husband. I told myself I would be bored if this didn’t exist, so I stayed. What I failed to understand is it shouldn’t trump everything else. He was not the right man for me for so many reasons.

I’m better now at looking at the whole package someone offers – the bad with the good. I look for kindness and empathy and I pay attention to the relationships someone has with friends and family. I now believe in the merit of cultures where parents vet the choice of mate. As a parent, I will look critically at the relationships any potential partner of my child has, and perhaps even more importantly, the nature of the relationship their parents have together.

There is a long list of things I no longer do when dating, but they are frankly minor in comparison. My new rules posts sum them up pretty well.

I still struggle with letting some guys go. Ridiculously I still think of Kyle almost every day. While he may have so many of the qualities I am looking for, he’s missing a critical one: interest in me. Well, he has interest, but it hasn’t translated into real actions. I’d rather he just have said I wasn’t the one for him.

Things have been more peaceful in my life these last many weeks. I don’t miss online dating and what comes with it. My pace of communication with Lewis and Jake has slowed down considerably. Jake and I had a great dinner date recently which I should get around to writing about, if only to talk about how nice it was to be with someone and be able to talk honestly about our feelings for each other.

Tony and I had a spell of seeing each other a lot. There is nothing new to say other than when the pendulum swung back, it wasn’t good for me. I was in a calm place with him, and returning to an increased level of intimacy doesn’t work for me.

Part of it happens because I let him fill the space I’d created in my life. It just happened. He asked to fill my time and I let him. Being with him feels really good, but we don’t exist in a bubble.

So I decided to take allocate a little bit of that space and open a new bumble account. I am not going to let it fill all my time. I paid the new fee so I can see everyone that has swiped right on me, which saves me time.

It’s been 24 hours and I’ve had some decent opening text conversations. I am not engaging with anyone during the day while at work, or when I’m with my son. This ensures it doesn’t take up too much time and keeps the pace reasonable.

I still feel calm and collected. Which is a lovely place to be.

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