Without thinking about it too much, I just noticed yesterday that my OKCupid profile has slowly evolved from “Men? Don’t need ’em, don’t really want ’em!” to “I know what I’m looking for, I know what I have to offer, and I’m ready to put myself out there.” I’ve been turned off by profiles that state that they are “still trying to figure things out”, they “aren’t sure they want anything long-term”, and “they’re not ready to jump into anything.” Not that I condone jumping or going long-term with someone you’ve just met, but this all screams emotionally unavailable to me.
I know I am emotionally unavailable to a degree, but I am making a huge effort not to be. Huge! I read this and this, and I am heeding the advice because I do want to be an emotionally available person in an emotionally healthy relationship. Now, probably because I’m so focused on being emotionally available and emotionally healthy, I’ll likely screw up some things dating-wise, but it’s a start in the right direction. I know that I will feel sad, scared, disappointed, emotionally unavailable, unsure, and weirded-out at times, but then I’ll realize it’s normal and not all my fault and try to move on by dusting myself off and getting back on the horse (oh, and how I hope he will be as endowed as one, too!).
How did I come to this realization? I guess it was through my conversations with Cutie when I, under a PMS haze, told him had feelings for him. We discussed me and what I want and he made me realize that I had determined what I was looking for, and that it was good: Someone I could be myself around, who didn’t judge me, someone I could trust. Since then, I’ve felt more confident that perhaps I’m ready or at least ready to open myself up to love.
I had a date with Runner last night. I fully expected a meal at his place, but we met downtown for a later dinner instead and I knew that meant no sex. I was pretty late but he was cool about it. When I arrived he was standing inside and without thinking I gave him a sweet kiss hello. We usually share an awkward hug and a New Jersey-like kiss on the cheek, like old friends. This time it was different and I really think it set the stage for a great evening.
Runner brought me a thoughtful gift from his travels and we had a nice visit. He even held my hand across the table. He told me that he really likes me. I, of course, became incredibly awkward and probably red in the face, and didn’t say much. Probably just sat there with a stupid smile and mumbled a few things. God, I’m horrible at that stuff.
When the restaurant closed he said that the night didn’t have to be over and we decided to have a drink a few doors down. We spent more time talking and touching. We talked about things that were a little deeper this time, and I think it helped us bond. At one point I was listening to him talk about how he’s figuring things out as far as trying to learn how to pick the right partner and how he’s trying to do things differently this time around. It sounded eerily familiar. I really felt like I’d grown when I told him that my advice was to just be genuine. To not try to be this or that, or look for this or that. I said he should be himself and once he finds someone he can be himself around, without feeling judged, taken advantage of, etc. that’s when he will know he’s found the right person. I think that’s pretty good advice and I felt really good saying it.
When it was time to call it a night around midnight, he walked me to my car and we made out for about 30 minutes inside. It was all very PG-13. He didn’t even touch my boob. He said he wanted to see me again when he came back from his upcoming trip. I said yes, and then we parted ways. He texted me good-night when he got home and we texted just a little today, mostly about how tired were both are because we didn’t get home until 1AM, but how much it was worth seeing each other.
I’m not convinced that Runner is ready for a relationship. I know he is doing a lot of dating and he is on OKCupid a lot. If he likes me that much, he will want to see me exclusively and he’ll tell me. I’m not bringing it up and I’m letting him keep his space while maintaining mine. I believe that taking things slow is ideal, and it’s what we’ve been doing, but I do wonder why it’s been this slow? I do realize he might not be emotionally available and obviously, that’s what I need. So, I’m prepared to call it quits if being with him means that I can’t have the healthy, happy relationship I want and frankly, deserve.