how did I become a born again virgin?

I was out for a walk with a younger girlfriend one day not long ago and, suddenly, it dawned on me — out of nowhere — to ask her, “Are you a virgin?”

She confessed that technically, just by a hair (so to speak), she was.

And it was as I pondered this wonder that I realized that, in this calendar year, I am also a virgin. OMG, I thought, how in the heck did that happen?! How is it that, in 2013, I’ve had what — in retrospect — I’d call a dry spell?

I thought about the dating…relationships? no, not really the right word…more like dating situations I’d gotten into:  two or three of them might have been heading toward physical intimacy, but with no great momentum or desire on my part. I was merely considering my willingness when things ended.

So it’s not as though I’m a prude or that I’ve intentionally abstained or that no one’s been interested. It’s just that I’m ready for something special, dammit, and I’m not willing to settle for another jerk or nowhere relationship!

Further, I’ve spent a great deal of time with toys, sometimes routinely using one each night for a period of days or weeks at a time.  I found this had two effects:

  1. I generally felt less needy or seeking of male attention.
  2. I slept soundly all night.

Another girlfriend suggested I consider whether it’s had the unintentional effect of making me lazy in my “search.” Would a month of pent-up desire change how I behave when out among potential suitors? Or change my energy or appeal to them?

To define what I’m looking / holding out for more specifically:  the last time a relationship felt truly special and magical was with my last boyfriend, who I met around this time (gulp) nearly two years ago. And we hung out a few times before feeling any emotional closeness. And we talked a lot on the dates we’d had. And, even though it took me less than a month to ask him to spend the night — and I really, honestly meant just to cuddle, but you know how that goes (especially when you haven’t really planned it out and end up topless after removing your bra because you failed to change in advance or have a tee-shirt ready) — it was sweet and tender and slow. It’s even fair to say I didn’t fully appreciate it at the moment but, if I could only use one word to describe how he behaved toward me and discovering my body for the first time, I would use “reverential.”

So I’m looking for reverence; that experience of someone who cares for me and is capable of tenderness and connection, someone who values me and cherishes my feelings, someone who genuinely desires the whole of me. And I’m just not interested in getting physically involved for anything less.

another one down

I cut another one loose a week ago. We’d been casually seeing each other for awhile and it just wasn’t going to work out:  He described himself as a day trader who tried to live modestly (miserly). He wanted to travel the world, having never been much of anywhere by the age of 47. He didn’t text and communicated only by phone, often leaving messages that went something like this:

Hi, it’s Steve. Sorry I missed you. I just called to say hello. Hope you’re having a good weekend.

I know that sounds perfectly normal, except that when you’re a single parent, you kinda want they guy to call and say something more like:

Hi Beautiful, it’s Steve. Wanted to see if you’re free Saturday night — I’ve got some great ideas for dinner. Ring me back!

At any rate, he sounded a bit too much like Eeyore. I found myself screening his calls, waiting two or three days to return his calls and generally disinterested in seeing him.

So last week, I set up one more dinner. I think I meant to give myself one more chance to feel some magic. But I didn’t. He walked me to my car, then I drove him to his across the lot. And I let him know that I didn’t feel our relationship developing into anything serious. I thought it would be most respectful to do it in person. I thought it would be quick and easy:  he’d get out of my car and drive away.

But he wanted to discuss:  He asked me if there was anything specific he’d done or hadn’t done.

I repeated that I just wasn’t feeling it, that I was very busy with work and some remodeling projects and parenting…

He told me that, while it’s difficult to date as a single parent, people who want to work at it can be successful.

I said:

See, that’s just it:  I’m not feeling that special something that makes me want to work at it.

All the way home, I thought about how good-looking and kind he was, how nice it felt when he touched me and kissed me, and how auspicious the size of his extremities appeared to be. We always seemed to laugh when we were together. I wondered if I’d made a mistake, particularly since I hadn’t yet verified a correlation between the size of his hands and…well, you know.

Then, while telling a co-worker about it the next day, she laughed and said, “You mean you were just too nice to be honest! You had an entire list of things you didn’t like about this guy and why it wouldn’t work.”

All those things came flooding back to me. I realized she was right. And that I’d made the right decision.

feeling blessed

I have long known the power of gratitude, and I genuinely try to be a practitioner of gratitude consciousness, remaining ever aware of my blessings. This is difficult to do when one’s primary relationship is toxic and while going through a divorce, so there were several years during which I struggled mightily to maintain a positive outlook.

I can honestly say that I’m mostly there now…feeling happy and blessed is my normal state of mind. Further, I believe I’m experiencing the results of this energy; things I’ve wanted to manifest for some time are practically hurtling toward me.

Take, for example, my home:  I’ve had contractors for two separate household projects either begin work or call to move up the start date of their respective projects. How perfect that I’ve just had a long weekend with a free day to drive around shopping for paint colors, tile, knobs and fixtures until I was positively exhausted! How cool to have finally found a combination of elements that inspired me and I believe will come together perfectly!

The other day, one of my children proclaimed me “awesome” and went on to enumerate the reasons I’m a great mother. It warmed my heart!

Another example is all the friends, neighbors and even complete strangers who’ve offered to set me up on dates. A wonderful married couple in my neighborhood are conspiring to have a backyard party where I will be in the company of a single man they think might be a match — at the very least we have a few things in common. And the woman who helped me at a tile shop the other day asked me if I’d like to meet her brother-in-law. Yes.

Finally, I was reading a book about financial abundance (money) that suggested writing down everything incoming each day, regardless of the source. (Obviously, this is meant for entrepreneurs, not folks like me who receive a salary.) Still, I added up my salary, bonus and even the support I receive for my children and realized that the number I’d given myself as an annual target a couple of years ago has already been surpassed. I finally feel as though I’ve recovered (financially) from my divorce and can really focus on planning for my and my family’s future. It’s time to set a new goal and open myself to other ways of receiving!

Getting to spend two days on the lake — getting sunshine, exercise and a chance to catch up with girlfriends — over this long holiday weekend was the icing on the cake. As a dear friend often says, “to the bounty!”

Cheers…to the bounty, indeed!