.. on dating.

i don’t date. i know that makes it strange to start a post “on dating” but that’s just the fact. i don’t do it. i’ve never done it. and i don’t really want to.. except that i really, really do.

i’ve had boyfriends. from the time i entered 6th grade { dont tell my mother } until about 4 years ago, i always had someone. one boyfriend was quickly followed by another because i always had a back up – to be on the safe side, so i was never truly alone.

& then 4 years ago, when i should have been relishing a new life in a new city, i stopped. i stopped wanting attention. i stopped caring about myself, my appearance, my health. previously, i tried to look good because i wanted attention; i wanted to attract attention or keep someone’s attention on me. and then.. i wanted to disappear.

i was content to hole up in my office, in my apartment, and be alone. i met new people, especially new women, who i found simply fascinating. they were in wonderful long-term relationships with men who saw them as equals. they participated in the most creative activities and held themselves with such grace and confidence.

i thought they were fabulous. and i knew i wasn’t one of them. i felt inadequate. even though they made no indication that it was at all necessary, i found myself anxiously trying to prove myself – and failing miserably. so i retreated. the effort it took to prepare myself for social interactions was exhausting. every now and then, i found myself having an amazing time, building my confidence and encouraging myself to try again. but more often than not, i felt ridiculous. the quiet, strange girl in the corner who no one knew and everyone wondered why she was there.. if they wondered at all.

over four years later, i might be ready. i am ready. to start over; to try. well, maybe ready isn’t the right word. but i’m ready to be reckless. dating requires you to be vulnerable, or so i hear. and that’s not something i’ve done very well lately. so i’ll be a little reckless. i’ll put myself in vulnerable situations – which at this point includes anything outside of my apartment or office. i’ll let myself be vulnerable – which at this point includes smiling and actually speaking to new people.

you might be able to tell by now.. being reckless for me doesn’t include jumping out of a plane or raging until all hours of the night. we’re starting from the beginning. who knows where we’ll end up?