Do you ever have that moment when you are so happy being single you worry when you’re finally in a relationship you won’t know how to adjust? And don’t ever mistake me for one of those, “I don’t need a man” bitches. I love men, I need men, and I want a man. But until I meet the right one I am really and truly enjoying myself. There’s something so freeing being able to come and go as you please. If you follow my blog you know my ex husband was a holy roller Pentecostal. So typically my Sundays were spent going to his family’s small church. The day would begin with Sunday School, the church service would last from 10:00-3pm and then we had to have Sunday dinners at his mother’s house every Sunday. It was pure torture. I believe in going to church. As a matter of fact going to church for me is cleansing. And I find it prepares me for whatever comes my way each week. But some of the most “religious” people are the biggest hypocrites and I will just leave it at that on that topic. And there are more days in the week besides Sunday. Sometimes you just don’t feel like going to a church service. Church should not be a form of bondage. You should go because it is your choice not an obligation. This past Sunday I needed some much needed ME time. So I went to the beach and mediated. I didn’t have to run my plans by anyone else. I just went. I thought about how different/better my life is since my marriage ended. And to think there was once a time when I would have wanted to be in a dead end monotonous marriage just to save face or because in my mind that was what I was “supposed” to do. Thank goodness for clarity! I also thought about if I were offered a job in Paris, London, or anywhere else in the world I could make the decision to go in a heartbeat and not have to sit down and figure it out with someone else. If I decided to take a quick trip to Maui for a week I could get up and go and not have to make babysitting arrangements. I am truly enjoying the ability to be selfish and think of me right now. And I am really living life to the fullest. The reason I am so exuberant about feeling so happy in my singledom is because there was once a time when I didn’t feel like that. There was once a time shortly after my divorce where I felt like I had to meet someone and get remarried before my ex-husband just to prove a point. Just to “show him” that I was lovable. Crazy concept, huh? But I know I am not alone. There was once a time when I thought in order to achieve success and freedom I needed to be partnered with someone. I know, completely ridiculous! There was once a time when I would have cringed at the mere thought of going to a movie by myself. These were all things I told myself. So when you finally reach a point of liberation it just feels so damn good. I am very clear on what I am looking for and my non-negotiables. I recently decided to revisit someone from my past I was hopeful. I am purposefully being vague since he will forever be a friend of mine and out of respect to him, I don’t want to put him out there like that. (For all of you nosey ass men out there who read my blog secretly now you can see I don’t put everything out there) After all we had been friends for many years and decided to see what would happen if we decided to explore the possibility of making it more. And things started off nicely. It was refreshing to deal with someone who knew me and we could just enjoy each other without the façade some people try to put on in the beginning of the relationship. Things were progressing nicely. Since he didn’t live in LA we spent a lot of time catching up over the phone. Then the conversation came up that made me take a U turn. Actually you could probably see the skid marks I was so quickly done.
Guy Friend: You seem to travel a lot.
Me: Absolutely, I love to travel. Don’t you?
Guy Friend: Not really.
Me: Really. Why?
Guy Friend: I would much rather use that time to work on other projects or go to New York.
Me: But going to New York isn’t the same as travelling somewhere exotic and experiencing another culture.
Guy Friend: I get that. I just don’t really like to travel.
Me: Well that’s kind of a non negotiable for me. Travelling is something I love.
Guy Friend: I wouldn’t expect you not to travel. If you want to go somewhere with your girls that’s cool.
Me: I know that. But when I am in a relationship I would also want to experience travelling with my mate.
Guy Friend: I hear you. I guess I can be stubborn at times… Hello, are you there?
I didn’t realize I had tuned him out and was thinking back to when I was dating my ex husband and discovered that he didn’t even have a passport. A 27 year old man without a damn passport! But at the time I was young and in love and figured we would travel the world together. I didn’t look at the bigger issue (which I will save for another blog… one day).
Me: I’m here. But I have to tell you travelling is something that is really important to me. It could actually be a deal breaker. It’s one thing if you just haven’t travelled a lot but you are willing to try. It’s another thing if you just don’t like to do it and aren’t willing to try.
Guy Friend: I hear you. I just think that money can be used for something better. You know I am on my grind with this entertainment thing. What if we are together and I decide to quit my day job to pursue it full time and for a while I’ll need you to cut back.
Record screech to a loud halt.
Me: At this point in my life I am not willing to be in a relationship where I have to do that. It’s one thing if we are married and you get laid off from a job. It’s another thing if you quit willingly and expect me to carry the family. That would never work. Anyone who comes into my life at this point has to partner with me so we can enhance each other’s lives. I would not put myself in a situation where I would have to live less than how I am living now WITH someone. Maybe if we were 22 that would be a different thing. But not at 36 and 38.
Guy Friend: I might have a big opportunity where I would have to make that choice.
Me: I applaud you on that and wish you the very best on that. But at this point in my life that just wouldn’t work for me.
Guy Friend: I hear you. It’s just a hypothetical situation. But it’s something that could happen.
I took a long pause. Not because I was mad at him or because he did anything wrong. It wasn’t an unfair request of him. It just wasn’t something that would work for me. At the end of the day the issue wasn’t about his unwillingness to travel. That was just a surface issue. The real issue was we were on two different pages. I knew I was quick to put on my running shoes and sprint my way out of a possible relationship at the first sign of a conflict. I knew this was the remaining residue of past hurts and disappointments and I also knew this was something I was working on. As you know, I have turned a page in my dating. Instead of running away and going into hiding once I am turned off I decided to do the mature thing and talk to him. I also know me all too well. Once I am turned off I can become a big bitch to a guy (don’t judge me I’m a WIP- Work in Progress). This was something else I was working on. Damn I have A LOT of shit to work on. Anyway I digressed. My point was I realized some guys are better off as your friend. You can’t force a relationship with someone when you are on two different pages. I truly valued him as a friend and the last thing I would want is to jeopardize that relationship by trying to force a square peg into a round circle. I ended up telling him that we are better off being friends. I also told him he should consider dating women in their 20’s. Hell they have the time and patience for that kind of shit. I just didn’t. To this day he and I are great friends and we respect our differences. I am a firm believer in exploring various possibilities. And sometimes, when you are single and longing for a relationship it is easy to try to turn someone who is in your friendship circle into a possible relationship. I get that. After all, at the end of the day you want your mate to be your best friend. That is truly important. However, you can’t ignore the signs when you are not compatible with someone for a relationship just because they are your friend. In this particular situation, it wasn’t just about him not wanting to travel. That would be completely shallow and ignorant. You can work on that with someone. But we were just at two different phases in our lives and our expectations of a relationship and what it should be are just on two different spectrums. Neither one of us were being unreasonable in what we desired. So long story short… Sometimes a friend should remain just that… a great guy friend.