Trending lately on social media has been to “Describe Yourself in 3 Fictional Characters”. Three. Remember this number, it has relevance later, but I digress. I’ve always enjoyed these little trends, they’re fun, quirky, and can be comical while still allowing you to be pretty damn direct about things. So, who are my three fictional characters?
Belle, Monica Geller, and Iris Simpkins. While I’m sure you are all chomping at the bit on the edge of your seats as to why these are the magic three, for the sake of time – I’ll be channeling my inner Iris for this post.
Who is Iris Simpkins? She is the very lovable, but very heart broken British woman in The Holiday, played by the amazingly talented Kate Winslet. If you’re not familiar with the cult-classic, I insist you stop reading this blog, grab a glass of merlot, plob your hinny on the couch, and watch it!
Watched it? Good, let’s continue…
The first time I saw The Holiday (10 years ago!), I related to Iris immediately. The ah-ha moments included her opening monologue and her line, “You’re supposed to be the leading lady in your own life, for God’s sake!” DING DING DING – BINGO!
I’d spent my life content as the side-kick, the BFF, and sometimes even the DUFF among my friends. I watched with envy as they found their happily ever afters. Meanwhile, my love life remained non-existent. I didn’t date in high school for I was the cubby girl who blended into the middle of the social pack. It wasn’t that I turned invitations down … frankly, I never had any to turn down (insert Monica Geller). Then college came around and I attended a liberal arts university that had a 7:1 girl-guy ratio. The odds were definitely NOT in my favor. So, I didn’t date in college either. Graduation comes and goes and I enter into the ‘real world’ with a huge realization that my dating life is officially F-‘d!
“I suppose I think about love more than anyone really should. I am constantly amazed by its sheer power to alter and define our lives.”
Of the countless dates over the past few years, one guy stands out as the beginning of THE CURSE. My Billygoat, if you will (Go Cubbies!). I was coming off one of the best years of my life. I had dropped the weight I’d been battling since college – well my life if I’m being honest! I’d completed my first half-marathon. I started a new job that came with a nice little salary boost, and I’d become a homeowner. I was single and I was ready to mingle. One little problem … how to find the guy? This was one of the first eye-openers to how the dating landscape has changed for the worse. You just don’t meet people organically anymore. What happened to all the “Meet-Cute’s” (seriously, watch The Holiday). After much coaxing, from my hair stylist of all people (love ya girl!), I bit the bullet and joined the superficial swiping community of Tinder.
“Hey cutie ;)”.
Enter Bill. Quite the pick up line this one had, huh! Nonetheless, we began talking … a lot. Well, truthfully, it wasn’t talking, it was texting. Nobody talks anymore. It started pretty normal, but before I knew it, we were texting for hours at a time. Each morning I woke with a smile from his good morning messages and I fell asleep grinning from the days conversations. After a week of this, we had our first date. I was extremely nervous! We had such good texting chemistry (Did I really just type that? Is that even a ‘thing’?!). I was so scared that meeting would prove to disappoint.
Midweek, Bill had texted that he’d called and made dinner reservations for Friday at 300 East for 7pm, did that work for me? First off – damn! initiative! None of this “where would you like to go?” … “what kind of food do you like?” … “what part of town is good for you?” … blah, blah, blah. I absolutely LOVED it! And second, this boy was gonna wine and dine me! 300 East is a great traditional date-night spot. Because we’d never met, we chose to meet at the restaurant. A girl can never be to carful these days – read “If You D.A.R.E”
. He was already at the booth when I arrived. I took a deep breathe and walked over to introduce myself. The chemistry was instantaneous – at least for me. I’d always heard people say when it’s right, you just know … it’s a feeling. I finally understood what they meant. It remains the BEST first date … and potentially, the best of any date … that I’ve ever had! Our relationship continued like this over the next three weeks. Three …
“Most love stories are about people who fall in love with each other. But what about the rest of us? What about our stories, those of us who fall in love alone?”
Unrequited love … falling in love alone. That’s exactly what happened to me with Bill. And what makes it even harder to swallow is he was my first love. Damn it! How the hell did this happen? In a nutshell, Bill was the king of smooth talk. He knew just what to say and when to say it.
How so? You’ve already read how we began … *Spoiler Alert* … Bill and I broke up. That is, if we were ever really even together, we never had the “determine the relationship (DTR)” talk.
It was our third week together, however you want to define the relationship. We had Thursday evening plans because he was going home to be with family for Easter. He was coming over after work and I was cooking dinner. The evening was great – normal. He stayed over for the third time. Each time prior, he’d make a fuss about not kissing me in the morning because he didn’t have a toothbrush. Okay, fair. So, earlier that week, I had picked up a toothbrush while I was doing my weekly shopping at Target. I thought it’d be cute to tease as an Easter basket gift. Truthfully, it was a selfish gift as I just wanted to be able to kiss him in the mornings before he’d leave. I wake up Friday morning and the same ‘ole non-sense begins. I stopped, told him to hold on a sec while I ran downstairs to grab the Target bag (I never did do the cute basket thing … probably for the better … read on). I run back into the bedroom, throw the bag at him and yell, “Happy Easter!”. That was the moment everything changed. Looking back, I can now register the look I saw as panic/Oh shit!/WTF do I do now/this girl is bat-shit crazy! From that point forward, Bill and I were never the same. After a week of sporadic and distant text, I asked if we could talk (yes, like on the phone). I was blindsided by his change in behavior. He literally just flipped a switch. After our talk, I had more questions than I did answers. How could a guy tell me, “You’re perfect for me. You’re exactly what I’m looking for. I didn’t expect to meet a girl like you.You will be an amazing wife and mother” and in the same breath tell me, “I wasn’t suppose to meet you yet! I didn’t expect to find a needle in a haystack, I don’t know what my future holds and that’s not fair to you – I can’t do this right now”.
Things were over. I had to accept that. However, he didn’t make it easy. We’d see each other over the summer and into fall from time to time. Trying the “let’s be friends” thing. Never a good idea! While we were on-again, mostly off-again for 6 months, nothing was as painful as the weeks immediately following the toothbrush debacle. I don’t think there are words that can describe how I felt, but Iris does a pretty damn good job:
“I understand feeling as small and as insignificant as humanly possible. And how it can actually ache in places you didn’t know you had inside you. And it doesn’t matter how many new haircuts you get, or gyms you join, or how many glasses of chardonnay you drink with your girlfriends… you still go to bed every night going over every detail and wonder what you did wrong or how you could have misunderstood. And how in the hell for that brief moment you could think that you were that happy. And sometimes you can even convince yourself that he’ll see the light and show up at your door.”
I know I’m leaving a lot out, but this post is getting long enough. The gist is, while I didn’t know it at the time – I had fallen in love with Bill in those first three weeks. Unfortunately, Bill didn’t love me back … and I often doubt whether he ever truly cared about me at all.
Since I met Bill, no guy has made it to a fourth date. For this, that, and the other reasons – that’s been my reality. It’s the curse of the third date!
You may have noticed, my dating status last post was #Nesting. If you’ve been following along, this means I’m focusing on a one guy. This doesn’t mean we’ve had the DTR, just that I’ve decided I’m into this guy enough that I’m choosing to only date him and let the chips fall where they may. The only guy since Bill to make it past the third date, fell victim to the 3-week curse. Huh? Let me back up a minute … I failed to mention … Bill was a double-whammy because it was 3 dates over 3 weeks (he lived an hour south of Charlotte so dates were limited to weekends … it’s a long story).
Jacob and I hit it off pretty well on our first date. Four more dates followed … did you catch that? FOUR, as in after three!
Has the curse been broken? Not so lucky … Our fifth date was at OMB’s Mecktoberfest last weekend. He had to work late so I went with some girlfriends and he was going to meet me there later. As the night wrapped up at the festival, Jacob and I went back to my place to “hangout” ;), haha. The city of Charlotte was under a curfew (in the wake of the Keith Scott shooting
) and Jacob wasn’t prepared to stay over. I walked him out, he kissed me goodbye saying, “see you soon.”
Something felt off. I couldn’t put my finger on it, but I felt like that was it for us – I wasn’t going to see him again. My gut was right. He had an appointment early Saturday morning to shop for a motorcycle. I’d not heard from him – which was unusual – so I texted …
Friday night’s Mecktoberfest was our three-week ‘anniversary’ (I hate using that word, but it’s all I got right now). The curse continues …
What’s the common thread? Those with a critical eye may have already figured it out. He’s just not that into you!!! Yes, it’s true. No matter which way you view it … Bill, Jacob, all the ones in between … they just weren’t that into me. The End.
“And after all that, however long all that may be, you’ll go somewhere new. And you’ll meet people who make you feel worthwhile again. And little pieces of your soul will finally come back. And all that fuzzy stuff, those years of your life that you wasted, that will eventually begin to fade.”
xoxo, Queen Bee … channeling my inner Iris while *newly* #BuzzingAbout