Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Everyone Who Is Behind Me, Watch Out... I'm Slowing My Roll

Someone told me once never to read the comments people leave on my blog. Easier said than done of course... besides, I love reading when people find my posts interesting or inspiring. But, with the good also comes the bad - because somewhere along the way, someone got hurt. And the need to retaliate can strike at any moment. 

Another friend of mine told me that the reason she could never do what I do is because if someone said hurtful things to her, she would hide in a corner for three weeks and never write again. I admit, it does put a delay on things, but only because the last thing I want to do is write again too quickly and respond emotionally. Tim used to tell me not to acknowledge people when they lash out at me. The negative comments are always anonymous, but I basically always know who they are and I want to hit them back where it hurts. However, I learned from Tim that it is better to take some time, step back, let things cool down and then just pick up where I left off. 

I realize I put myself out there and often invite this kind of critical feedback, and people tell me that since I do so, I need to learn how to have a thicker skin and ignore the “haters when they hate”. It has gotten easier. Yet another friend asked me if I knew the girl who wrote that last nasty comment because she couldn’t imagine a stranger would be so cruel. I thought about that too... yes, I know who “she” is and, actually, it makes it better. I couldn’t help but think to myself how much worse I would feel if it wasn’t someone I had hurt in the past. If it was, in fact, a stranger who felt the need to bash everything I do without even knowing who I was. The ultimate snark. I honestly think that would be a lot more difficult to handle. 

I probably shouldn’t even be acknowledging it now... Tim would be disappointed.. but as you know, I write what I feel. When I don’t, it feels forced and fake. 

The comment has made me think quite a bit about what I’ve been up to lately, specifically with my dating. As I always do, after my breakup, I waited just long enough for the pain to subside before I jumped right back into the dating pool. With a vengeance even... I wanted to beat the onset of loneliness and the feeling of being unworthy. I figured if I just got right back to work, I could keep my mind off of everything I had done wrong and hurry up and find someone else to occupy my time. I promised myself I wouldn’t make the same mistake I had made with almost all of my exes. But in order to keep from making this mistake, I needed to acknowledge what it was. Until just the other day, I hadn’t actually done this. 

Okay, that’s not entirely true. I think I’ve mentioned in the past that I have dated men because they were interested in me and not necessarily because I was interested in them. However, I never dug that much deeper into this because it hasn’t ever taken that long to see these guys in a positive light. I can find the good in people so quickly. Humor is attractive. So even if I wasn’t physically attracted to them right away, they would make me laugh and that would enhance their attractiveness ten fold. If they turned out to be smart, even better. Fan of Family Guy? Perfect... that sounds like a good match to me. 

What I am realizing, however, is that this is not enough. I am selling myself short by settling for certain qualities that are good enough without really reaching for that person that I think is perfect for me. I even started to go through this with the redhead. I’m not sure I would’ve sent him a message first if I would’ve come across his profile online. After meeting him of course, I saw all kinds of things that I liked about him and our differences only made the idea of dating him more intriguing. But the more I think about it... we really didn’t have an enormous amount of things in common. Perhaps he picked up on this more quickly than I did which was why he never called back. 

I was talking to another friend last night about this and told him that I just wish the redhead would’ve told me what it was that he didn’t think was going to work for him. I really wanted to know. 

Confused, my friend asked me why. Why would I want to know? What difference does it make? 

Well, so I could address it in the future with other potential relationships. 

Before the sentence was completely out of my mouth, I understood where my friend was going with it. Knowing why, would I change who I am? If so, aren’t I setting myself up for another relationship that won’t work out? I mean, don’t I want someone who will like me for who I am, without having to make any adjustments? 

As we discussed it further, I told him that I had recently come to the realization that I put myself in situations that were safe. I dated guys who were crazy about me so that I wouldn’t be the one getting hurt. I always knew I would be the one leaving if it didn’t work out. I always had the upper hand. This put me in a position of power, but never one of love and vulnerability. 

My friend looked at me in silence for a moment and then pretty much told me what a shitty person I was. At least that’s what I heard. And he was right. And he didn’t have to say it anonymously for me to get it. 

Of course someone would leave me a blog comment like that. I mean, look at what I did to them? 

Slow your roll is the phrase that keeps coming to mind when I think about myself and my activities over the last few weeks. I’ve been seeing Guy #1 fairly regularly. At least to the point where he should probably get an actual name (it’s Rob, by the way) but as he has helped me see, this is not a race. If it’s going to work with us, it’s going to happen naturally and organically and not because I forced it. And what I like about how things are going so far is that I am the one that found him online. I liked what I saw, I liked what he wrote and being with him makes me feel humble and without control. Talk about something different. It’s too early to predict the potential of the relationship... but it’s not a race. And as another friend mentioned (I have so much support... it has brought tears to my eyes more than once this past week), taking some time for myself is something I haven’t really done that might give me better perspective on things. 

So I’ve been trying to enjoy the little things in life; holding my seven week old niece, seeing my parents shed their XL and XXL wardrobes for smaller clothing, having meaningful conversations with my brother, connecting with my friends, watching golf on a Sunday afternoon, throwing a strike in the pocket and enjoying a Fat Tire over a few episodes of Aqua Teen Hunger Force. 

Because the Universe is going to happen whether I like it or not. No sense in square-pegging and round-holing it. Going with the flow has not always been easy for me... but I can feel in my bones how important it is for me to embrace this idea. 

Therefore, consider my roll... slowed.


  1. There is a song by Chris Cornell called Disappearing Act...the lyrics pertain to some of your blogged thoughts...as we walk our path through life there is one relationship that is more important than any mate, spouse, partner, family, lover...that is your relationship with you.

  2. A note to the haters: The transparency of your miserable excuse for a life is remarkable! As the apparent ringleader, do you ever wonder what the other members of your wretched little PB&B crew say about you behind your back? Narcissists like you never do. Instead you choose to unleash your own brand of malevolence all over town to redirect the focus off your selfish ass. Gross.

    1. BTW, I don't just love you because you have the courage to stand up for a friend - I love you because of who you are, what you represent and for always being the same person I met all those years ago. As much as the words of others hurt, when I get support from people like you, who ACTUALLY know me... who ACTUALLY understand me and who ACTUALLY love me for all that I am and am not, it moves me to tears of absolute humility.

      You are one of the most amazing women I've ever met and I will always be proud to call you a friend.


    I do a "slow your roll" pep-talk with myself just about everyday. And the context is never limited to my romantic life, but my entire existence. =)

    Rob (Montana)

  4. ...and the "GOOD GRAVY!" wasn't in response to any specific comment, Tina. I just like saying it. ;)

  5. Very wise introspection! As a significantly reformed, needy co-dependent that spent 18+ years from one marriage to the next, I have found more comfort in me, myself, & I in my own 'sanctuary zones' I have finally adopted, than I ever did in those needy relationships!
    Such strength has even girded the co-dependent me to point of refusing marriage proposals vs popping them if a lady fair looks upon me fondly for almost the 18 years since my last marriage! ;]
    I have never forgotten, and now finally & truly understand the depth of a little statuette I bought as a gift for my 'first' wife that proclaimed:

    "I don't love you because I need you.. I need you because I love you!"


    1. I love it. Truer words have never been spoken - it's just nice when you stop and take the time to say that to yourself. :) Thanks for your feedback.

  6. I'm proud of you. A very appropriate path you are on, IMO. :)

    But... WTF is "Aqua Teen Hunger Force???"

    (That's a serious question. You know pop culture isn't really my thing... LOL)

    1. That's funny that you would make that comment about not being familiar with pop culture, especially since you just used IMO, WTF and LOL all in the same comment. ;)