One of the things about being a widow is the constant state of “where am I at” that I feel that I’m in: I’m constantly taking stock of things. I can’t ever get out of my head.
So I’m constantly wondering if I’m ready to date again.
For a while last fall I felt I was ready. Then I started to think through what a date would be like, and I realized that at some point someone other than Sawan might want to kiss me, and I threw up a little bit in my mouth. I realized that dating again is not just about me, and trying it would not just put me at risk, but also the other person that I was going out with (they have a heart to break and feelings, too) and so, no, definitely not ready yet.
Before I had come to this conclusion, though, someone on the widow message board had suggested eHarmony as a website that was great. I thought that I should check it out. It seemed like a good idea, since I’m in a job where I don’t meet ANY single men. Once upon a time, in my single days, I had done Match.com and had nothing to show for it but two really hilarious stories. Wasn’t sure I was ready for that again, so something that did a little more “weeding out” before the date process began seemed like a good idea. Also, if you want to know something about me, I’ll share: I’m a super nerd who loves to do that kind of personality profiling stuff. On a night where I was home and bored, I was watching TV with my laptop open and decided to cruise by the eHarmony website and take the quiz. Fun. I did the whole thing, you know, the kind of questions like “are you afraid of clowns?” Choose one of five options ranging from “strongly agree” to “strongly disagree.” When finished, it tells you to wait while it searches for your matches. Picture me anxiously drumming my fingers on my laptop, thinking about what could happen in the next few seconds, and here’s what pops up: “We’re sorry, but we were not able to find you any suitable matches.” Read that: “Noel, no one wants to date a widow in her 30’s, you are un-dateable.” I couldn’t believe how rejected I felt by an inanimate object.
That was several months ago. I’m re-visiting the idea of dating again (and not because anyone’s asking, just because I can’t get out of my head). And I’m thinking about it not just because I’m lonely, but also I realize that I was really good at being in a relationship. I was really good at being married. And I’m realizing that part of what I’m missing about Sawan is my femininity crying out to be cared for. I think this is a healthier spot, and maybe means I’m inching toward being more ready, but I don’t know if this actually means that I am, because the idea of kissing someone else, while not thrilling, is at least not as nauseating as it was before. So, now the next obstacle will be, (once I get on board) how do we find someone willing to date a widow?