Scrambled or Sunny-side Up?
I know I said I was taking a dating break. That lasted for an entire 2 ½ weeks. What can I say? I’m a sucker. You can’t keep a sistah down for the count for too damn long! LOL! And I didn’t go looking for a date. It just crept up on me. I was having a late night in the office last week and to my surprise I got a phone call from “Joseph.” I met “Joseph months ago at a Grammy Event. I didn’t really think much of it when I gave him my business card. I was networking and we happened to be standing next to each other at the bar and he struck up a conversation. Did I mention the Grammy’s were in February? It is now October. So we are talking a good eight months later! Eight fucking months and he just decided to call?! Really?
Joseph: I know you probably don’t remember me. We met at that Grammy event a while back.
Me: I remember you. How have you been?
Joseph: I’ve been great. How about you?
Me: Since I last saw you, I got married, had 2.5 children…
Joseph: I know it’s been a while and I was taking a chance calling you. I was working on finishing up my doctorate and I just graduated a few weeks ago and now have more time on my hands.
Joseph: Thank you. Are you busy this weekend?
I knew I had decided to take a break. But I was slightly intrigued and even more so bored. I needed to get back in the dating scene to hone my skills. It’s easy to get rusty if you don’t get out there for too long. From what I remember “Joseph” was a decent looking guy. And we shared a mutual friend so he came with references.
Me: I’m free Sunday afternoon.
Joseph: Okay. Cool. I’ll text you a spot Sunday morning for us to meet up. Let’s say 2pm?
Me: See you then.
On Sunday I found myself pulling up to Mi Piace in Old Pasadena. And there was “Joseph.” He was a little older than I remembered… actually A LOT older. Now anyone who is a loyal reader to my blog knows I have a tendency to date men who are slightly older than me. I just like a man with a little bit of experience and salt and pepper hair around the temples. But I recently came to the conclusion that 47 which is ten years older than me is my age limit. Looking at “Joseph” he had to be a good 50 years old! A handsome 50 years old, but definitely older. I was suddenly relieved it was an afternoon date. I could easily be in and out.
He pulled out my chair for me… you know men who are older are old school gentleman. That was a plus. I immediately started thinking about women I knew in the late 40’s/early 50’s that I could hook him up with. I ordered a glass of Sauvignon Blanc and the conversation ensued. “Joseph” was a father of 3 boys. His oldest son was 32 years old. Yep…I said it… 32 years old…also known as 5 years younger than me. He had 2 granddaughters. And come to find out “Joseph” was 53 years old! And since he had just gotten his doctorate in Spiritual Philosophy he was the “authority” on every topic under the sun. He talked about his life story growing up in the projects and making his way out to become a successful Scientist. His life story was quite interesting. I was impressed and moved by his story. But it was a LONG story considering there were five decades to cover.
Then we got on the topic of religion. I could have sworn religion and politics were two topics to avoid on a first date. I could appreciate that he considered himself to be spiritual and not religious. I had major issues with “religious” judgmental, hypocritical people. I had experienced being part of a church first family and heard how they spoke about their congregants and preached one thing and lived a completely different way Monday-Saturday. I knew I could never be in another situation like that. Don’t get me wrong, it is important that my man is Christian but I also know it was equally important he was a spiritual person not a dogmatic religious type. There I go digressing…
My point was, “Joseph” went on a long diatribe about… well I don’t remember exactly what it was about because I tuned out after the first 6 minutes of the his monologue. I started doing what I normally did when I tuned out. I started thinking about my grocery list for the week, what color I was going to paint my room, my outfits for my upcoming homecoming weekend at my Alma Matter. I didn’t realize I had completely tuned out until “Joseph” chimed in.
Joseph: Did you want to order dessert?
Me: Oh no. I am full. Besides today isn’t my cheat day.
Joseph: Cheat day?
ME: Yeah. I try to watch what I eat. I look forward to the day when I don’t have to think about it.
Joseph: When would that be?
Me: Probably when I’m pregnant. I won’t eat like crazy but at least I won’t have to worry about sucking in.
This was a conversation I would normally NEVER have with a man I was interested in. But since I had already decided I was putting “Joseph” in the friend category I wasn’t concerned about impressing him. Also, I knew since he had grandkids already he certainly wasn’t interested in having any more children. It was my easy way out.
Joseph: You want kids?
Me: Of course! I can’t wait to be a mom one day.
Joseph: How many?
Me: Probably two.
Joseph: But you’re 37 years old. The only way you could have kids is through scientific technology. You’re too old to have them naturally.
Me: Excuse me?
Joseph: I’m just stating the scientific facts. You’re up there in age and you probably will have to go the IVF route to have kids. You don’t have many viable eggs left.
Me: That’s not true. What are you talking about?
Joseph: It is true. It’s just science. Each year you are losing eggs. And the eggs you have are probably not good eggs. Women who have kids at your age go have to go to fertility specialist. I guess I have to think about whether or not I want more kids if I am going to date you.
I couldn’t believe this guy! I couldn’t believe he actually said that with a straight face. I realized I was out with the guy who thought he knew everything because he had just gotten his doctorate! Perhaps this was the bullshit he fed to insecure woman so he could convince them not to have any more kids. I had to remind myself “Joseph” and I shared a mutual friend. So I didn’t want to go off on him and risk putting our friend in an awkward situation. I also knew I would more than likely run into him again and I didn’t want shit to get weird. That’s the highs and lows of dating someone where you both share a mutual friend. If shit works out GREAT, but if not, you have to be cognizant of all parties involved. This was part of my dating growth. Back in my heyday, I wouldn’t have given a damn. I would have walked the fuck out and kept it moving. But now that I was wiser and had more dating “maturity” (I say that sarcastically) I was doing things different.
Me: Well, Joseph. I think you’re a nice guy. But I think you and I are at two different places in life. You are winding down and I am just beginning to enter a certain stage of my life that you have obviously graduated from.
I know that was a settle Read. What can I say? My old bitch habits are hard to shake.
Joseph: You’re probably right.
Me: But thanks for a great lunch. And I will see you around.
He stood up and gave me a hug. And a walked out of the restaurant and got in my car.
I could have fallen for this settle manipulation and general overall ignorance. As a matter of fact, to be perfectly honest, although I know I want kids eventually, I am enjoying my life right now. For me, I can’t even think about having children until I meet the man who will ultimately be my husband. That’s my personal choice and I do not knock women who decide to do it on their own. That is their personal choice. I thank God every single day I did not have children with my ex-husband. My guardian angels were looking out for me! I was grateful I would have my future children with the right man… my soul mate.
In recent years, I have been around women where it has been difficult for them to conceive. I see the pain in their eyes and the heartache of the uncertainty of knowing if they will one day experience what it is like to rub their pregnant bellies and give birth to their biological children. And these are women who would make amazing mothers. And it is pretty fucking scary thought. Ironically, we spend most of our 20’s avoiding getting pregnant. And being “responsible” and taking the necessary precautions to make sure we do not “slip” up. And then when you are ready. You want it to happen immediately. And for some people it ain’t easy. And that is so unfortunate.
I recently had the reassurance that I in fact had a young uterus and plenty of healthy eggs. So my baby making days weren’t behind me. As a matter of fact I knew I had some time on the clock. I was relieved. It was nice to know my clock and my ambitions were on the same page. And suddenly the sun was shining brighter and a wave of calm came over me. I was one of the lucky ones.
However, “Joseph’s” statement had my brain scrambled. Is this the new thing some men are doing? Making women feel insecure about their child bearing years? Is this why so many women of a certain age start freaking out about their biological clock and then make bad dating decisions based on the fear that their time is running out? Now that I am a certain age why were certain people attempting to make my biological clock tick faster than it needed to? Why did I feel the need to fit into someone else’s box. Before I got the reassuring news of my fertility, I was freaking out. Although my life is great where it is, I had begun to think about the future. The “what ifs” the “Worse case scenarios” the “Oh shit, time is ticking.”
Thank goodness I knew I was okay. And why wouldn’t I be? When I thought about it, women like Halle Berry, Kim Fields, Mariah Carey, Jennifer Lopez, Nia Long, Celene Dion, Tina Fey, Salma Hayek, Nicole Kidman, and Madonna had given birth to their own biological children in their 40’s! And let’s take this to real life non celebrities. My mentor gave birth to her first child when she was 43 years old. So why was I allowing other’s people’s issues and biological clocks to effective my view of my own baby making years?
Being single and in your 30’s is fun, exhilarating, and freeing, but it is also stressful and can really knock you down at times. We have enough to worry about so why put extra shit on our plates worrying about the biological clock? I realized there are so many women out there who have allowed this worry and concern to dominate how they approach dating where it isn’t even fun anymore because they are dating out of desperation instead of enjoyment. And I believe some men perpetuate this insecurity by making dumb ass statements similar to “Joseph’s”. And we actually believe that shit and are buying into the foolery.
Don’t get me wrong, there does come a point in a woman’s life where they do need to consider their birthing/motherhood options. Time stops for no one. And it is a reality that women of a certain age have to deal with. But cross that bridge when you get to it! In the meantime do NOT let anyone dictate your clock. And by all means do not let your fear of the unknown push you into dating desperation. Think back to how it was when you were dating in your 20’s. There was a certain amount of freedom you had because you knew you had options. If you saw shit that wasn’t right, you kept it moving. Why does that have to change when you hit your 30’s? Why do you suddenly feel the need to settle for some bullshit because you are scared you won’t get shit? IT’s time to reclaim your own timing and remember who you are and what you are bringing to the table. All will work itself out. Just allow yourself to enjoy the process and date freely without fear. After all, that’s the beauty of dating in your 30’s in up. Been there, done that, learned the lesson, and are fully open to the journey.