The Dating Apocalypse: Or how dating in your 30s is a lot like the Walking Dead

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His face is haggard, his eyes tired, but he misses nothing. His body, though broken, is strong and poised to strike at a moment’s notice. He is sizing up this stranger to see whether or not he’s a threat.

“How many walkers have you killed?” “How many people have you killed?” “Why?”

If you’re familiar with The Walking Dead, you know that when Rick Grimes and his crew meet new people they might want to bring into their group they ask them these three questions. These questions are loaded and heavy and quickly cut to the heart of a persons character. And they MUST be answered before he’ll even consider bringing a new person into the fold. It was while watching him ask these questions on an episode recently that I had an a-ha moment.

Rick Grimes and I are basically the same person.  Yup.

His character is trying to survive the wasteland that is America after the zombie apocalypse happens.  I am trying to survive the wasteland that is the dating scene in Dallas in my mid-30’s.

IT IS BASICALLY THE SAME THING. Just kidding … but, no really … kinda the same. Let me tell you why.

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This is 35

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I drank way too much last night.

It started out with dinner with a good friend. We had wine and some incredible mediterranean food and got into some deep discussions. I love those. The kinds of discussions where it’s food for the soul and you leave feeling sated and full in spirit. I love the safe spaces friends can provide where your burdens become suddenly lighter because you’re carrying them together. I love emotional transparency and vulnerability. Gah. It really was beautiful. 

Then I ubered to meet two friends at another bar, more deep discussions (though I must say they started to get a little gibberish-y towards the end cause… vodka). Then ubered to karaoke, sang a song (killed it), then ubered to yet another bar for last call. I don’t even know how much alcohol I consumed. Wine, vodka, whiskey. Oof. 

This is 35. For me. 

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Dating with Anxiety (Part 2): Or how I’m learning to give myself a break

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Last time I talked about some painful things. My anxiety and how that has really become a burden while dating and embarking on a new relationship.

One of the biggest things I’m learning is how to have compassion for myself. And to see things in a clearer perspective (vs the nagging negative voice that has repeatedly told me I’m too much of a burden for anyone, I’ll never be able to have the life or love I truly desire, etc etc). 

Four years ago I walked away from a safe space. A marriage and a home with a man who I might not have been in love with, but someone who I did care for, who cared for me (well, most of the time) and who was my partner. I shared everything with this man – my ups and downs, good and bad.  It might’ve been unhealthy, unkind, even indifferent but it was certain. I, a person with very intense anxiety, walked away from a very certain and stable future. Did I mention I walked away from a HOME? We had this beautiful home we remodeled. It had a yard. And vaulted ceilings. Sigh. I had safety and security but emotionally we were totally empty.

Walking away from the stability was GD scary. There were moments I was worried I had a brain tumor. My whole self, my entire identity (to a degree), was shifting. I was … becoming me. It was a rebirth in a sense. I knew it had to be done and yet there was a vast amount of time spent going WTF is wrong with me.

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Dating with Anxiety: How to lose a guy in 10 days … or three months

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I’ve been trying to think about what my next article should be … for about a month now. I’ve been stumped. Why? Partly because I truly want to sound cool and I want to be Carrie Bradshaw. I freaking love her. Sex and the Big D. I feel like my posts should be about single girl adventures and fun, flirty lessons … and while I do have some crazy adventures from time to time, the lessons are rarely fun and flirty and they’re really starting to beat me up.

I started this blog for me right? And I must stay true to that. To the authenticity of this project. Warts and anxiety and repeated mistakes and all.

During the past month I ended a very short-lived but promising relationship with a guy I was growing fond of … and I traveled to Bali alone. But in reverse order. Soon I will write about Bali, but for now I need to talk about that short-lived relationship.

Ok … to be honest, I’m still processing the relationship. I am sad that it has ended though I was the one who opted to call it quits. I miss him … or do I? I don’t know. The honest truth is I have overwhelming anxiety at the beginning of relationships. Oh let’s be honest, I have overwhelming anxiety throughout ALL of my romantic relationships. I have carried these deep fears of abandonment since childhood and I am only just now, at 35, starting to understand them. Starting to really see the damage NOT addressing them is doing to me and my future happiness. 

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The Big D: Divorced

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I’ve been trying to think of a clever way to start this part of my life’s tale but I came up short. To be blunt, I’m exhausted thinking about writing this. Just as you’re likely exhausted at the thought of reading it. Divorce. Blech. What can I say about divorce that hasn’t already been said? Nothing. What advice could I give? Honestly … nothing, except be wary of who you marry but that’s been said a gazillion times already. And those of us who have been divorced were likely choosing a person because we believed they WERE it. In fact, I was married after being in a relationship for 6 years. I was very VERY wary. And still here I am … divorced.

I have no insights for you. The only ones I have are my own and they are for me and my life and I’m not sure I understand them fully either. Quite frankly, if you read this you might end up hating me by the end. But I came here to tell the truth and so the truth I will tell.

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The Big D: Dating (Part 1)

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He had a thick accent and he was buying me drinks. This was a Tuesday at my favorite neighborhood bar and it was supposed to be an early night. I was supposed to just get sushi with my friend then a drink then home by 10. But his accent and story about being a federal agent stopped me. It was definitely a lie but I was that kind of intrigued that comes from three stout vodka sodas. I began to feel that restless, excited feeling that comes when I realize the night is about to take a turn and I want to be there for the ride.

I love this feeling. Well …mostly. Most of the time it takes me to some pretty cool places and lets me experience some pretty cool things. Occasionally though, it leads me down the wrong, gonna-be-way-too-hungover-and-it’s-not-worth-it-because-this-place-was-lame path. However, this night it was the former. Lorenzo (that was the ‘federal agent’s name) asked me what I did for fun. I mentioned I sing a mean karaoke and that was it. We were off to one of the coolest gay bars in Dallas that has karaoke almost every night of the week.

This is the other big D in my life. Dating. For all intents and purposes I’ve been single for about 3 years. And I have dated. A lot. So so so many dates. In fact, so many I’ve decided to start a blog so I can one day remember them all. Good and bad.

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The Big D: Dallas

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So before I delve into the other Big D’s in my life – divorced, dating, (drunk) and of course, that sometimes beautiful, sometimes formidable part of the male anatomy – I figure it’s best to really set the stage and start with, well, Dallas. Which is the setting for most, if not all, of my tales.

I could talk to you at length about Dallas … about the various neighborhoods and pockets of culture. About the things I love and hate about this city I call home. But I won’t because it really isn’t important. What really IS important about this particular setting is what Dallas and the Big D represented to me. And to understand that, you need to know a little bit of my history.

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The Big Beginning

Let me start off by saying I know next to nothing about anything. 

I’m not wise nor will I be a resource of helpful life tips and spiritual insights. I’m almost certain to give you the wrong advice. I’m terrible at relationships and make all the wrong choices when it comes to dating. This blog will likely annoy you, frustrate you, anger you because this blog isn’t really for you. It’s for me. And really it’s not even for me, it’s about me. It’s about the trials and tribulations of being … well me. Divorced. Dating. (Drunk.) And be warned, I am annoying, frustrating and I’ve definitely done a lot of things that are worthy of anger.

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