A divorce therapist's own journey!

CHANGE OF ADDRESS - NEW SITE

Hi,

I have a new address. I hope you will follow my blog on the new site;

www.suddenlysingleat55.com

 

Thank you so much for your comments and support!

THE BUILDER AND HIS TOOLS

As luck would have it, while I’m trying to figure out what to do with my damn feelings and my spare time, now that Darts is busy being father of the year (and I mean that in a good way), someone else comes to my attention when his profile pops up on the “Wants to meet you” portion of the dating website. He’s in the construction business and focuses on “green” projects, which I soon learn means ecologically sound. I like that, I’m a responsible recycler after all! It seems very current and progressive. He says that he lives about 200 miles away, but he has a number of projects in my city and, conveniently, he happens to be in town for a few days. So, we decide to meet at a restaurant/bar close to my house the next evening.

For the most part, I’ve been a little disappointed by the relationship between profile pictures and reality. Therefore, I’m not too surprised that the Builder is much shorter than I expected and not quite as attractive as he appeared to be in his photos. BUT, he has something that can’t really be portrayed on a dating website - an adorable German accent! And a funny way of smiling and laughing that catches my fancy immediately.

As I start talking to him, I learn that the Builder is intelligent and educated. He has a master’s degree, as well as a law degree. He owns his company and was one of the first in the industry to embrace environmentally conscious development.  He is, well, peculiar, in a sort of charming way, and I find myself laughing a great deal while playfully challenging him on several topics during our conversation. By the end of our short date, I’m quite intrigued by this funny foreigner, and we agree to meet the following week when he comes back in town. 

A few days later, I get a text from the Builder saying that he would like to cook dinner for me. I hesitate for a moment - after all, cooking dinner is my MO! It also means that he will be in my kitchen, since he doesn’t live here and I’m not driving 200 miles for dinner! Did I like him that much? What do I really know about him? He has an accent, is from out of town, and is quirky, albeit in a cute way. I know what you’re thinking – Oh, now she’s being cautious! For some reason, I decide to call my friend the PI (he comes in handy, both in my professional life and my personal one!) and have him check out the Builder before responding. Within an hour, I have a green light, well a yellow light actually. The detective reminds me that all he can do is see if he has a record and if his business is legit, he can’t vouch for him on a personal basis.

In the meantime, I’ve gotten several more texts from the Builder. I guess he’s trying to tempt me with his culinary knowledge. Evidently, along with being a man who can construct things out of brick and mortar, he can also put together a gourmet meal!  So we agree that I’ll provide the kitchen (you knew it, right?) and the wine, and he will bring the rest. 

The Builder knocks on my front door at exactly 7:30 and, when I open it, barrels in carrying two bags of groceries and two melons. I ask what he’s going to use the melons for and he replies that he brought them just for me to eat, because, he explains, “it is goot for you.”  As he unpacks the bags, I see that he has brought two whole fish (and I do mean whole – heads, tails, eyes, scales…), jasmine rice, and asparagus, along with cooking utensils, olive oil, spices and herbs. 

I have to say that I’m impressed! Taking a seat, I watch him as he expertly filets the fish, steams the rice, and sautés the asparagus.  And while he’s creating this amazing meal, he carries on a lively conversation, sneaking over to kiss my cheek every few minutes.  I find myself amused and enchanted, much to my surprise!  Unlike Boots and Jeans, he is not at all what I would call a “manly man,” but he is masculine and well built in his own way.  Unlike the Inventor, he is self-assured without bragging about his accomplishments, and unlike Mocha, he showed up on time and brought a gift – ok, so he brought melons, but it’s the thought that counts!  (The next time I see him, it’s a watermelon from a grower he knows, then a pineapple he thinks I will love, followed by tomatoes, cucumbers and apples, all of which he says are “goot for me.”) 

 But, what I find most appealing about the Builder is that he is consistently positive and upbeat.  Life for him is AWESOME! He openly expresses a genuine happiness and love for life, as well as an appreciation for the simplest of things. This is a different sort of guy. I don’t have an overwhelming desire to kiss him, but I do like it when he gives me an affectionate peck on the cheek, followed by a sheepish grin on his face.  I like the way he hugged me hello and exuberantly told me that I’m beautiful.  I know he means it sincerely, he’s not at all a game player, and while he does not exude sex appeal in the way Boots and Jeans or Mocha do, there is something sort of special about this man with the funny little mustache and goatee and charming accent.  

After we finish eating the fabulous food he prepared with such warm gusto, we continue to talk non-stop, laughing and kidding each other. But, eventually I start getting sleepy and I have an early appointment in the morning. Knowing the Builder has a very long drive home, and given the amount of wine we’ve had, I ask him if he would like to sleep here and leave early in the morning. Really, just sleep. This is not a man I find myself attracted to sexually, even though it looks like he has great cuddle potential. He happily agrees (seriously, the most happy person I know!).

The next morning, I wake up to this sweet man curled around me in a warm and loving way.  Ok, so I gave in to some cuddling, but no hanky-panky! I think I’ve already expressed my seemingly insatiable desire to be held. As I lay there, I realize that I’m pleased to have met the Builder. I feel like his happiness and “joie de vivre” are welcome additions to my life. On the other hand, as pleasant as this is, the Mother Ship has not even turned the ignition key. No, this is a different feeling, one of comfort, security and kindness. But then, as I am enjoying the chaste closeness of spooning with the Builder, I begin to feel something growing behind me.  I start laughing to myself at the predictability of men, then stop abruptly, surprised by the size of what is happening back there. Then I feel the Builder start to move, as he becomes fully awake.

Crap! Well, what did I expect? Playing with fire and all…

Let me just say that, for a man who is not very tall, what I find poking into my back is fairly impressive.  It seems that this cute little man has a very large “friend!” I slowly turn around, realizing that I have put us both in an awkward position. The Builder has a grin on his face like the Cheshire Cat, but seems to be apologizing with his eyes. After all, his secret has been revealed when we had agreed to do nothing more than cuddle. And while the cuddling has been lovely, and while I admit I am very curious, it’s just curiosity at this point and I don’t want to lead this nice man on any further than I already have. So, I sit up and offer to go get him a cup of coffee.

I take my time in the kitchen, giving him a chance to “calm down” or whatever… And while the coffee is brewing, I pack up the things he brought to make dinner and smile to myself. The Builder came fully prepared with all the tools he needed to impress me in the kitchen, and inadvertently impressed me with his secret bedroom tool, as well!   

 

THE "F" WORD

As I’ve mentioned, Darts has a son. He’s ten years old and lives with his Dad full-time during the school year because his mother moved to another state. Answering the question, “Where is the kid?” - he was on an extended visit with his Mom for the summer break, so Darts had quite a bit of time free of daddy-duty. Before “little darts” came home, his Dad and I were having weekly (if not twice weekly) slumber parties. But this has come to a screeching halt – and that would be me screeching! Darts is now busy with carpooling and homework during the week, and football practice and games on the weekend. His focus is almost totally on his child – as it should be.

I find it interesting to see single fatherhood from this vantage point. In my practice, I am more typically dealing with mothers who have taken on the majority of the child-rearing burden, either by choice or by default of the other parent…. or by court order in some unfortunate situations. So, to see Darts so dedicated to his son is refreshing and heart-warming. But, when I take off my therapist hat and put on my hot lover lingerie, it’s down right frustrating! 

Also, I am starting to question this whole notion of “friends with benefits.” Can it really work without someone getting emotionally involved? I’m not so sure. I mean it’s hard not to care, or rather, to find the right level of caring, in a relationship that is so intimate on one level and not on others.

All I can tell you at the moment is that I like Darts and I find myself developing very fond feelings for him – yes, I said the “F” word - and I’m not quite sure what to do with those feelings. I don’t think I ever want to get married again, and I can’t imagine being responsible for a ten-year-old stepson! I have a granddaughter that age! (Something all you cougars out there should take into consideration!) Besides, we have an agreement and I don’t want to go all “Mocha” on him and talk too much about it!

But, I am a romantic at heart. I do want to fall in love someday and share my life, create a life, with someone.  I want, like all of us I suspect, to be in love and lust with my best friend, to know we’ve got each other’s backs and will try always to be kind, compassionate, caring and loving to one another.  Sounds idealistic, I know, especially given the messed up couples I see in my office on a daily basis. But despite it all, I still believe in love and I trust that life will provide that again for me in an amazing and incredible way.  In the meantime, Darts is one of those rare finds that I hope will always be in my life in some form or fashion. And I’m looking forward to Thanksgiving, when Little Darts will go visit his Mom again!

RELAX AND ENJOY THE BENEFITS

Darts and I have been chatting throughout the week, via text like the 21st century lovers we now are! At least I hope we’re lovers, I’m looking forward to seeing more of him. We decide to cook dinner at my house, and that Friday, right on time, the doorbell rings. And there he is, with wine and flowers in hand. Given my last few experiences with Mocha, in which he was usually late, then didn’t even show up at all once, and never came bearing anything but his libido on high alert, I am pleasantly surprised and appreciative of Darts’ behavior so far. 

Speaking of Mocha, he has turned out to be a very sweet man. But I have discovered that he makes decisions in his life based on fear, not love.  I am determined to live my life acting with courage out of love, not fear, and this has become an issue for us. 

He told me after he no-showed that he’s afraid he’s not at “my level,” and that when I find a man who is I’ll dump him.  He also says he’s afraid of falling in love with me because we live in different worlds. He’s talking about social status and money, not about race or age. I’ve tried to explain to him that I have been married to two men (yes, two) who were very well off financially, and where did that get me?  If that was all I wanted I would have held my nose and stayed in a marriage that was a danger to my sense of self – just for the financial security.

But that’s not what I want. I know I have sounded somewhat snotty about some of the profiles I’ve read and the men I’ve met. But that has more to do with expectations of compatibility, not with what they have monetarily or what they can offer socially. I’m learning more and more about myself everyday, and this dating experience is part of that process. No, Mocha doesn’t have the same material things as many people I know do. But I respect the fact that he was not given the advantages that most of them were born with, and yet he got an education and has made a life he can be proud of.

I have my own successful career. I have been financially responsible and if I’m careful, I can support myself in a comfortable fashion for the rest for my life. I don’t need someone else to provide that for me. I do not need all the social crap either; it just doesn’t matter to me any more. I don’t care if I am invited to the big party everyone’s talking about – what I care about is that I have wonderful, supportive friends. Do NOT ever underestimate the value of girlfriends!

So at this point in my life, I don’t NEED a man for anything, except maybe to figure out how to hook up my television set and install my speakers. I even have a great gay male friend who will come over and help me hang artwork, put up shelving in my garage, and be my plus one if I need him to. What I WANT is the companionship of someone who is passionate, loving, caring, kind, considerate, interesting, supportive, understanding, generous, fun and makes me laugh.  I know it’s a long list.

I told Mocha that in all honesty, I’m not looking to get married, engaged or even seriously committed to anyone now or in the near future.  I asked him to just relax and enjoy the time we have together.  I don’t want us to fall in love! I’m not ready yet. I will tell you what I like most about Mocha, well what I like second most about Mocha (lol), is that he tells me he loves it when I teach him things and that he feels like he is becoming a better man because of me. That, my friends, is worth a great deal to me! I respect him and he values my experience and advice – what’s wrong with that?

BUT, I digress - back to Darts…. he comes over and we pour some wine, play tongue darts for a bit and then work together in the kitchen making dinner.  It’s lovely!   What I like best about Darts is that he is really, really funny!  We listen to music, sing and dance, all while making a fabulous dinner. Afterwards, he helps me clean up (I KNOW, right?) in between kissing me and touching me affectionately and making me laugh at his stories. This man turns me on, on so many levels! Who knew fun could be such a strong aphrodisiac? After dinner, it’s an easy transition to dessert - and I don’t mean chocolate cake. 

Darts is also extraordinarily entertaining in bed.  He’s expressive and adventurous, as well as being very interested in satisfying me before and above anything else. Jackpot!! What I really love is that his behavior inspires me to act similarly, and I am amazing! At least I feel like I am! I’m pleasantly surprised by how expressive and adventuresome I can be.  I’m also silently laughing my ass off thinking about how shocked my ex-husband would be if he knew what a temptress I’ve become in bed!

I like this part of me that’s unfolding – open to new experiences, less self-conscious, more confident, freer, more FUN! Although, I feel somewhat angry about wasting so much time thinking I was past my days of adventure, and convinced that my libido was dead.  It was my marriage that was dead. Maybe that’s why I am so, well, horny! There was this whole part of me that was starving for attention. And now I have turned into a glutton!

Darts spends the whole night.  I have to admit that sometimes I’ve missed sharing a bed with a man who will cuddle and hold me in his arms. Darts seems happy to comply. I also like waking up with him, especially when it appears he is really happy to see me first thing in the morning!  Don’t try to tell me that erection is just because he has to pee… whatever…. I like it!   

So after our first official sleepover, Darts tells me that he would like for us to be “friends with benefits.” Another new concept, but one that describes pretty accurately what I’m looking for at this point in my life. We have a very grown-up, honest, discussion. Neither of us is married, engaged or otherwise committed to anyone else, but neither of us is looking for a monogamous relationship - and we agree to engage in safe sex, always.  We confirm that we really like each other’s company - in and out of the bedroom.  We laugh a lot, and I mean a lot, which is very important to me, and we have loads of fun – in and out of the bedroom. I feel like I can talk to Darts, and he can talk to me, as a friend, even about our other relationships. It’s nice and easy and free of agendas. So we decide together that “friends with benefits” will be the best arrangement for us. It sounds so easy... 

THE MORNING AFTER NOTHING, SOMETHING CAME UP

In the morning, I wake with a start, realizing I’m not in my own bed. This is followed by a moment of panic. I do a quick check and find that I seem to be only semi-undressed. Also, there appears to be a man asleep next to me. I quickly probe my fuzzy mind, trying to remember if anything happened. I lift the covers to peek at myself, and as I’m doing this Darts begins to stir. 

Dropping the covers, I quickly attempt to fluff up my bed-hair, and take a peek at my slumber buddy. He’s lying on his back and – OMG! - I have to bite my hand not to laugh out loud when I notice the sheets tenting over what must be his morning… you know what. Do all men wake up turned on? How frustrating for those who don’t get morning sex on a regular basis – no wonder all those studies say that men think about it every three minutes or so throughout the day – they wake up thinking about it!

I can’t contain my giggling any longer. Darts sits up, with a grin on his face and a twinkle in his eyes.  Oh God, what is he thinking?  Oh hell, I know what he’s thinking! I’m thinking the same thing. Does this count as a second date? Or is this still just a really long first date? I was such a good girl last night! Why blow it now? I should excuse myself, find my missing clothes, and leave – honor in tact.

But…he looks very sexy sleepy. I feel the mother ship purring and I know I’m a goner. At least it’s not going to be drunken sex. That would be way over the line of propriety. Although, that line seems to be a moveable boundary.

So I quickly justify my next actions by admitting to myself that I like this guy. He’s very funny, incredibly kind and sweet, and sensitive to boot. AND, I soon find out that he is great in bed.  I mean GREAT in bed!!

I leave an hour later thinking, “Oh God…what have I gotten myself into? I enjoyed that way too much!”

My busy day finally ends. I’m exhausted, but I have had a stupid grin on my face all day. Darts calls to thank me for a very fun evening (and morning) and asks if I am free the following Friday. You bet I am! And if I wasn’t, I would get free. 

FUN WITH DARTS

When I get to Darts’ house I find a real Man Cave. He lives with his son who he has full custody of. Don’t get me wrong, his home is very nice I just prefer a table in my dining room rather than a foosball game. But, I’m not moving in with the guy, so who cares?  He has a nice kitchen that seems to actually contain cooking utensils, as well as a mini ping-pong table that I assume they eat on. In the family room, there is a comfortable looking couch with a matching recliner (the universal man-chair) and an extremely large flat screen.

When I ask to use the restroom, I notice it’s very neat and clean.  In fact, the whole house appears to be well kept, which I find quite impressive as I have two boys who live on their own…can you spell mold? In every corner of the bathroom! YUCK! Of course, they are 20 something and Darts is 40 something, but sometimes age doesn’t seem to have anything to do with maturity. Anyway, I’m feeling rather pleased by what I see when Darts offers me a glass of wine and ushers me over to the dartboard, which he has chosen to hang in the dining room, instead of a nice print or something. 

If you really think about it, though, how many of us who have a dining room actually use it in the “traditional” manner often? Maybe once or twice a year for special occasions? I have found that men living on their own tend to be much more practical than women. Obviously, Darts needed a game room more than he needed a dining room. SO why not use his house the way that fits him best, instead of conforming to the expected mode of décor? There’s a lesson in there somewhere.

He hands me a dart, which I find surprisingly heavy and sharp, and tells me to go first. At this point I confess to him that I have no idea how to play darts. When he tries to explain the game to me, it turns out that he doesn’t really know the rules either. After googling “how to play” on his iPad, we quickly realize it’ll be much more fun to just make up our own rules. So we decide to simply add up the points we each get and the first one to 500 wins.  Guess who wins?  Not only the first game, but the second, third and fourth games, too!  Suffice it to say, I’m having a blast and seriously considering joining a dartboard team. …. Do they have those? Is this an Olympic sport? I mean if dancing with a ribbon is, darts definitely should be! 

In between his turns, Darts kisses me for “good luck.” About the third time he does this, his tongue starts reminding me of a dart! He just stabs it right in there! It’s very forceful, and full of what I interpret as passion. After losing to me four times, I point out that my kisses do not seem to be bringing him any good luck at all. Instead, I seem to be the lucky one. He then accuses me of stealing his good dart-throwing juju and we decide to take a break…on the couch.

His tongue has me a little distracted, but I keep silently lecturing myself about the inappropriateness of spending the night with this man on our first date.  Where’s his kid, anyway? Maybe he’s spending the night out, in which case…What is happening to me?!  Why am I such a wanton hussy? I have never before in my life been a promiscuous person. My mother, my grandmother, everyone I know, would be shocked and embarrassed by my behavior. Strangely though, I’m not. I’m enjoying this. This guy has a great personality, and he’s sweet, and I’ve been laughing so much my stomach is sore. So I manage to push the questions regarding my moral well-being out of my head and give in to a good time – just for a little bit.

A very lengthy and very nice make out session on the couch ensues until I notice the time and gather my inner fortitude, telling Darts I need to go home.  He begs me to stay for just a few more minutes and pours me another glass of wine - which I down way too fast. That tongue is really… something. Then a very naughty thought about that tongue enters my mind and I am lost, succumbing, after what I hope is a ladylike period of time and a few half-hearted protestations, to his furthering advances. I soon find myself wrapped in his arms again, with all thoughts of going home vanishing. After all, I’ve had way too much wine and it would be irresponsible for me to drive. But – I AM NOT GOING TO HAVE SEX WITH HIM. I ask Darts if he would consider just letting me sleep there and nothing else.  “Of course,” he answers, with just a trace of disappointment in his voice, and we stumble upstairs to his room.

I’m happy to report that there is actual bedroom furniture in his bedroom. He has a beautiful king-sized bed and matching dark wood furniture. The room feels sultry and dark, yet it registers a touch of class and sophistication – or maybe I’m just wasted.  I crawl under the sheets, which are soft and super comfy, and curl up in his arms and…pass out immediately.  

LUKE-WARM MOCHA AND DODGING DARTS

I have continued to see Mocha off and on. But he turns out not to be the most reliable date at times. Which is surprising given his penchant for discipline in his eating habits, etc. Or maybe I’m casting too favorable a light on that. His you-know-what heals and, when we do get together, things are pretty great. But I sort of feel the novelty wearing off. That may be because I have now learned enough about him to “understand where he’s coming from.” Will I ever be able to not give a damn about that part and just enjoy the moment? Probably not, it’s not in my nature. In fact, my nature is to care deeply and I get great satisfaction from helping people.

But, sadly, I have come to realize that gorgeous, sexy, Mocha is a wounded bird. He was madly in love with his high school sweetheart – the ONLY black girl he has ever dated (can you hear those warning bells, or is it just me). He joined the service, was deployed, came back on leave, they found out several weeks after he left that she was pregnant. They had no money, he was not scheduled to be back in the US for months, they were afraid to tell their families - so they decided not to have the baby. She had an abortion, all alone. It was the end of the relationship, and he has never forgiven himself. Worse, he is convinced that she has never forgiven him. They never spoke, again. My heart hurts for him. I know he needs to heal that wound before he can move on.

Life is complicated. And I am not meeting “young” men. Most are younger than I am, but all are over 45. What does that mean? It means they’ve lived through some stuff. They’ve had relationships, good ones and bad ones and painful ones. They have experienced the highs and lows that come with letting yourself love. Most of them seem a little frightened of going there again. I am, too.

In the meantime, I begin chatting with another man on the dating site who, it turns out, lives quite close to me. We decide to meet at a bar near our houses for a drink and a “face to face.” It’s a Sunday evening and we sit outside so we can have some privacy to talk.  Well, this man is hysterical! I’m laughing at everything he says! He tells me that he just spent the weekend with his brother, who came in to town to visit, and they decided to stay downtown for some atmosphere.  Well, evidently, they got caught in an elevator! The elevator did not have much atmosphere, but after several hours it had a unique smell!

We order another glass of wine and continue our conversation. I must say, I’m really enjoying this.  As we are finishing up our second drink, he tells me he wants to kiss me before we say goodbye.  I start laughing again, this time nervously, and tell him that I don’t think that’s a good idea in the middle of this bar, where I am sure I know at least one person. How about the parking lot, he asks. Where everyone I know parks to shop at the grocery store next door? No, not a good idea, either!  He then suggests – surprise, surprise, surprise - going to his house, which as I mentioned is close by, to drink some more wine and play darts. Yes, darts! So once again I find myself being Ms. Throw Caution to the Wind and Ms. Don’t Listen to My Best Friend’s advice, as I follow him to his house.

 

 

 

MAN-SCAPING, IT'S NOT AN URBAN MYTH!

Needless to say, I am excited and anxious to see Mocha again! We make a date for the next weekend, and I’m pretty sure that we will end up going to my place. So I buy flowers, candles and a nice bottle of Chardonnay.  Sure enough, we decide to meet at my condo, which is fine with me. I want to know more about this mystery man and being out in public does not lend itself to deep conversations.  Mocha is very quiet, but, as a therapist, I’m highly skilled at asking open-ended, subtly probing questions. Soon, Mocha is telling me things he says he’s never told anyone else.  Is this a good thing? Am I again in danger of being a therapist to my lover!   I realize I don’t care at this point, because I’m already fantasizing about how the evening will end!

The evening progresses, the candles are lit, the music is playing and the bottle of wine is gone. Mocha begins to kiss me with those lovely lips and I am anxious to have this black man between my white sheets!  We move to the bedroom, and I am trying not to moan in an unladylike manner, when Mocha suddenly jumps up and hurries into the bathroom.  What’s going on?? Is he ill? Or maybe, since we are practicing safe sex like responsible adults, he’s just getting his condom out of his pants pocket.  He returns after a few minutes, smiling sheepishly, and gets back in my bed. But just as I hear the Mother Ship rev her engines, Mocha leaps out of bed and dives into the bathroom AGAIN.  What the hell?? My libido is on full alert and this is becoming frustrating to say the very least.  

When he returns I take a deep breath and ask him what he’s doing. His answer is the last thing I would have imagined! Apparently, he was doing some man-scaping before he came over and accidentally cut himself. Before I can stop myself, I blurt out, “You nicked your dick?!”  Now I’m laughing so hard, I have to run to the bathroom before I wet the bed!

I rejoin Mocha after doing my best to regain my composure, well as much composure as one can have when naked in bed with a man who has a nicked dick. The whole picture has become clear to me. When he got an erection, the, um, nick, began to bleed. He was running to the bathroom in hopes of stopping it. Trying not to be too obvious, I look, and notice a tiny corner of toilet paper stuck to his penis. I apologize for laughing, hoping he can embrace the humor of the situation. He smiles, expresses his embarrassment, and is actually a pretty good sport about the whole incident. On the assumption that he may need a few days to heal, he says good night and leaves – with his wounded “tail” between his legs!

I go back to my bedroom and fire up the never disappointing El Toro….

 

 

UNCHARTED TERRITORY

Undaunted - well, slightly daunted - I continue to look at new profiles as they appear on the dating website. One night a good-looking, slightly younger, black man pops up on my screen.  By the way, I am not black. I’m about as white as they come. I am admittedly intrigued, not just for the obvious reason but, also, because he seems pretty interesting. He has an MBA and works as a financial analyst. OK, AND his looks remind me of one of my favorite basketball players, who I happen to think is extremely hot.  Huh, this could be fun!  I’ve never gone out with a black man before, the opportunity has just never presented itself, but here it is! 

So, feeling like I’ve entered a new phase of openness in my life, I respond to his inquiry.  I am a little nervous, though. I mean, he is very attractive and more than a couple years younger. Why would he be interested in an older white woman? Maybe he clicked on the wrong person. But, he responds quickly and when we begin chatting he tells me that, interestingly enough, he only dates white women, AND that he likes older women because he finds them “more balanced.” I guess I fit that description. At least, I think I’m balancing pretty well.  We talk for a while and then agree to meet the next Friday night. But, I end up having a conflict and have to cancel.

Weeks go by and, quite frankly, I forget about him.  Then out of the blue, he pops back up on my iPad screen and, to my surprise, I’m really happy to see his sweet smiling face - and I tell him so. By the end of the conversation, we have decided to meet at a bar near my place on the next Thursday night. 

Now, it just so happens that I have my one and only negotiation meeting with my almost ex-husband that morning. With our respective attorneys maintaining the peace, we come to a favorable, for me, settlement.  I am pretty happy with the way things have turned out, considering this divorce was not my idea. It isn’t something I would ever have imagined would happen to us. I honestly thought I would be married to that man for the rest of my life. But then some photos turned up on our shared iphoto account. I recognized my husband, and our boat, I just couldn’t figure out who the blonde in the bikini was. Here’s the explanation I got when I asked him about said photos –

  “Oh, she’s just a rep who was in town seeing other clients and we ran into each other and even though our appointment was the following week she said she could talk to me about my account then and then I said well I’m about to go out on my boat and she said that she loves boats and would be happy to go over things on the boat so we just went on the boat and talked business and had lunch and came back.”

And, she takes a bikini to all of her business meetings?

I am embarrassed to say that I almost bought it. Me, the therapist who counsels people through this kind of crap. Of course, the truth is I knew it would be easier to buy it then to go down the road I was afraid we were headed toward. We hit that road full speed when I found the next photo a few weeks later – of a naked woman, stretched out across a bed. A bed I recognized as the Heavenly Bed the Westin Hotel likes to brag about. Her face is turned so it’s hard to tell if it’s the “rep.” But, at that point it didn’t matter.

We tried counseling, we tried “dating” each other – actually, correction, I tried. He didn’t. He was distant and rude and a little mean, even. He went out of his way to put me down. I couldn’t do anything right. And the worse his behavior got, the more I thought about whether I really wanted him any more. I had always thought he was attractive, and smart, and pretty wonderful. But now, he dimmed in my eyes. In the end, I told him it was over. And even though I thought I saw relief on his face, it felt good to be the one to make the final decision.

SO, I tell you all this so you’ll know what kind of mood I am in by the time I see the hot, younger, black man who seems very interested in me. When we meet by my house as planned, I tell him I have a better idea and ask if he would like to go sit by the river that runs through our city’s downtown and have a glass of champagne, because I feel like celebrating!  He agrees readily, and I leave him to run to my nearby apartment and grab the bottle of Dom Perignon I’ve been saving.

We drink a few glasses of champagne while talking by the water, getting to know each other. Then, very much a gentleman, he walks me to the door of my building. His eyes are smoky and sexy as he leans down to give me a warm, sweet kiss. I find myself entranced by this man who is smart, and a little quiet, and has beautifully smooth skin the color of mocha.

Mocha asks me out for the following weekend and I tell him I’d like to make him dinner.  I know, it’s becoming my MO. He graciously accepts and I tell him I’ll make sea bass, my one famous dish, in an attempt to impress him with my culinary skills.  The way to a man’s heart is through his stomach  - blah, blah, blah.

When Mocha shows up, he’s wearing linen pants, a polo shirt and sandals.  He also has that just shaved look - on his face and his head. Yes, he is bald, which I find very sexy on him. Let’s face it, there’s good bald and bad bald. He is a very good bald. After all, some of the classiest basketball players are bald.

I pour him a glass of Chardonnay and tell him that the store was out of sea bass, so I got salmon instead.  When I notice a somewhat wary look on his face, I ask if that’s okay and he responds quietly, “I guess so.”  I stop in my tracks, thinking, Oh Crap he’s allergic to salmon and trying to be polite.    But then I remembered him telling me that he is into fly-fishing and - they catch salmon, don’t they?  So I ask Mocha what “I guess” means?  He responds that he has never eaten salmon before. I’m shocked! I didn’t know whether I should laugh or cry!  How does one get to be 46, almost 47 years old and never try Salmon? Fly-fishing must be catch and release?  

Fortunately, I don’t laugh because when he sees the look on my face he explains that he is one of 12 kids and when he was growing up they couldn’t afford to eat things like salmon. His dad was a Baptist minister and sometimes it was hard to make ends meet with such a large family.  Okay, I completely understand, but this man has a successful career and surely he has been out to dinner at any number of restaurants where salmon is a staple. So the therapist in me starts analyzing – is he afraid of new things, does he avoid the unknown?

I decide to make an event out of this. So, with great presentation, I serve the salmon arranged on a platter with wild rice and grilled asparagus  - and hope for the best.  I hold my breath as I watch Mocha take his first tentative bite. He smiles at me, chews twice then takes a big gulp of wine.  After the third bite followed by the same ritual, I realize he is trying to like it but really doesn’t.  I ask him what he thinks of it and he says the color bothers him…. like why is it bright orange.  I muffle a laugh and explain that its wild sockeye and that’s just the color it is.  This does not seem to make him feel any better, so I decide to change the subject and let it go. I’ll make salmon salad for lunch tomorrow!

I ask Mocha what his favorite meals are and am shocked once more as he goes over his very disciplined and, may I say, very boring diet.  His day starts with dry cheerios, because he is lactose intolerant.  I ask him about soy, almond, coconut or rice milk as a substitute and he looks at me like I have three heads. Moving on to lunch, he goes to Subway every day and has one of three sandwiches - tuna, roast beef or ham - along with one bag of baked chips and sweet tea.  I am now stunned into silence, wondering who this man really is and what planet he has been living on and why in the world is he eats like this?  I am afraid to ask what he has for dinner, but he’s on a roll now and tells me that he stops at one of three restaurants (what’s the deal with 3s?) and orders something to go, after he has studied at the library for a few hours. He is taking some big test in a few months to be certified as some bigwig financial guy. All this is followed by a workout at the gym.  He’s in bed by 9:30.  

Okay, well then…. this guy is about as exciting and spontaneous as paint drying. But, even though he is Boring with a capital B in his daily life, he is still very hot. I’m relieved when I bring out dessert that he actually likes my molten chocolate cake. As we finish, he leans down and kisses me.  So…he can be a little spontaneous! Maybe he saves his spontaneity for his lovers?? I feel a tightening below my navel at the thought!

I kiss him back, and am pleased to find that I have yet to be disappointed in the kissing department! He has lovely, full lips and his kissing is slow and sensuous.  I feel like I’m sinking into him as his arms wrap around me.

Suddenly, the urban myth about black men jumps into my head. You know the one I’m thinking about…Is it a myth or a fact? Well, I think I will keep that secret to myself, but I will say that I surprised myself in bed with this lovely, mocha colored man, who has an amazingly sexy body that smells like honey.  Wow…. another first, and hopefully there will be a second, third, etc.….

THE INVENTOR AND THE PHALLACY OF OTHER FISH IN THE SEA

As I mentioned in my earlier blog, dating via Internet can be very disappointing.  But, my experience with the Inventor had given me hope, and so, I agreed to meet a somewhat promising looking man for coffee in my neighborhood.  

I enter Starbucks, looking around for the face I had seen on my computer screen.  Well, as I soon learn, profile pictures are not only mostly inaccurate, but can also hide certain flaws.  I am scanning the crowded room when this cowboy suddenly stands up, smiing wide enough for me to see that he seems to be missing a few key teeth.  Are you kidding me????  Who has missing teeth in this day and age of dental insurance and teeth whitening-erexia, unless you live in an area where dentists don't exist....and that would not be anywhere near the Starbucks we are currently staring at each other in!  But, being an intrinsicaly polite person, I give him a small wave, order my coffee, and join him at his table--where I quickly discover that almost nothing he put in his profile is truly indiciative of the person sitting across from me.  Now I've wasted a perfectly good morning drinking an overpriced cup of coffee with a guy who is not only missing teeth, but seems to be missing any realistic idea of who he actually is.  If he were in my office, I'd put him in the "over-inflated sense of self" category.  I glance around and pray the no one I know sees me, and promise myself that next time I meet someone for coffee or a glass of wine, it will NOT be in my neighborhood or anywhere near it.  When Gap-tooth finally stops talking, presumably to take a breath, I excuse myself to go to the restroom, where I call Pat and tell her she needs to rescue me.  

I return to our table and, as I'm sitting down, am relieved to hear my cell phone ringing in my purse.  I answer toute suite, then tell Gap-tooth that my friend needs me to come help her ASAP!  He feigns understanding and tells me he hopes we can see each other again, "real soon."  I smile and nod and leave as fast as I can.  Who knew dating would involve so many acting skills!   Then I cringe inside because I am always preaching to my clients the importance of being honest and up front- right from the start - and here I am violating that very rule. But I now realize that sometimes you have to BS your way out of certain situations, and try to spare some feelings on your way to the nearest exit.

So back to my so far successful Internet acquaintance, the Inventor.  We've had several dates by this point, which always seem to end up with us in a horizaontal position.  But now, after hours of pleasure and passion and weeks of texting each other, my cell phone has gone silent.  This is quite disconcerting as the Inventor is very good about communicating, albeit always by text message.  Maybe something has happened to him?  How would I know?  I grow more and more concerned, finally texting to ask if he's okay. Within minutes, he texts back that he needs to talk to me.  On the phone????  This can't be good. What's he going to tell me? That he's married, has a communicable disease, or something else equally as frightening?  

Shortly, for the first time ever, my cell phone rings with the Inventor's name showing up on my caller ID---and he breaks the bad news to me.  It appears, he's embarrassed to tell me, that he told his ex-girlfriend about me and guess what??  She wants him back!  What is it with me and ex-girlfriends....it's like I'm some sort of unwilling cupid or something?

As I listen to the Inventor go on, and on, about his situation, I hear myself slipping into therapist mode.  No longer the hot Lover, I've now become the understanding and compassionate shrink (not professsionally because that would be unethical).  As the Inventor explains his situation, I realize this is sounding very familiar. I give him a few of my tried and true pointers, before telling him in the most confident voice I can muster, that he needs to give it "one more run."  I wish him luck sincerely, even though it sounds like he is getting back into a very dysfunctional relationship, and thank him for all the fun times we've had.  He says he's surprised by how reasonable I'm being about it all and tells me how sweet I am for being so kind.  

Now that he's confessed, he doesn't seem to be in any hurry to get off the phone, but I have clients waiting.  He asks if we can stay in touch via email, as opposed to texting and phone calls, of which there has been one, and I say sure.  We exchange email addresses and I hang up with a big sigh, wondering how I've been put into the position once again of giving relationship advice to my lover...now, ex-lover!  I quickly chastise myself and swear on El Toro that this will never happen again!

Thinking I've received my last text from the Inventor, I'm surprised when his name pops up on my phone screen just two days later. I respond to his text by reminding him that he was not going to do this anymore, and he quickly informs me that, "things have changed."  So soon?   What could have happened in two days, I wonder?  Since we seem to be breaking all recently set rules, I call him.  Apparently, the ex-ex-girlfriend got upset when she found out that he had hired a female bookkeeper, a woman she happens to know from work, and had given her his front gate code as she works for him once a week at his home office.  The girlfriend evidently flew into a jealous rage, asssuming I guess that the woman was doing more than his books, and slapped him across the face before stomping out of his house.  Wow!  As I'm listening to his story, I wonder whether she has also stomped out of his life for good. You see, the Inventor is one of those really nice guys who don't seem to realize that they could just take control of these types of situations and avoid all the drama if they really wanted to. I just don't know if he wants to, some people seem to be drawn to chaos.  

Why is it that the crazy girls seem to always get the nice guys? You've probably wondered where all the nice guys are. Well, I'll tell you - they are busy playing catch and release and catch again with women who don't deserve them.  

And then a sinking feeling comes over me as I realize that the very same cycle I have seen in my practice for 20 + yeas is alive and well on the dating scene in 2012 - and it extends to people my age! I mean, really, does a girl have to become a bitch to hold on to a nice guy?  Because if so, I'm doomed!

THE INVENTOR

So after my two-week fling with Boots and Jeans sadly ended, Pat encouraged me to join an Internet Dating Site she had been on for quite some time.  I told her I would rather join a convent, to which she replied, "Ok, Sister. But, really, what have you got to lose?"  I suppose she's right. Minimally, I could meet some interesting men I'd never run across in my "real life" and, best case scenario, I could possibly meet the man of my recently torrid dreams---ha ha ha!

So after a few days of contemplating my choice of sitting at home waiting for Prince Charming to show up with a glass Louboutin, or creating a profile and seeing what happens, I decide to seize the day and find out what Internet Dating is all about.  After all, this is 2012 and if I'm going to meet new people, I need to get in the groove and do what everyone else seems to be doing.  And I know they are doing it, because I'm a therapist and hear about people meeting other people on line all the time -- unfortunately, many of these people are married and should not be doing this.  Of course, I'm a divorce therapist.

Oh well..might as well give it a whirl.

So that night, I take a big gulp of chardonnay, turn off the Bachlorette, and create a profile.  I even post a few pictures (after the second glass of wine), hoping against hope that no one I know personally or, God-forbid, professionally will ever see it. I finish, turn off the computer before I can change my mind, and go to bed, reciting a novena!

The next morning before I crawl out of bed for my morning walk, I check my Iphone and am shocked to see that my inbox has 15 messages on the dating site.  I'm surprised, and, yes, I'll admit it,  a little excited! I'm also very curious as to what, or who, I would find when I opened my messages and matches.  So I pour myself a hot cup of coffee, and begin to peruse my responses. It's just like Internet shopping, but better...it's free!

But then, I open the first three profiles, and feel like crying.  It's worse than I could ever have imagined.  Most of them seem not to have completed seventh grade, if their lack of spelling and grammatical skills is any indication.  On top of that, they vary from somewhat to very unattractive, physically. I've not seen one who I would ever want to be caught dead with, much less having coffee with in public!  Now, I know you are probably thinking that I sound like a snob.  Well, I guess I am!  I have a Master's Degree, damnit! One I worked really hard for and cost me quite a bit. I have a successful private practice! And, okay, I consider myself well-dressed and somewhat attractive for a woman my age. My ex-husband may not have appreciated me, but I'm learning more and more that that was his problem. I'm fun-loving and well-traveled. I like to talk to people who are like-minded! Is that really so bad?  I don't think so. So when "Cuntryboy73" wants to meet me for a "brew," and the photo he chooses to post is of him on his John Deere tractor in a pair of overalls and shirtless, I'm thinking, "I don't care how nice and romantic he sounds on this profile, this is NOT GOING TO HAPPEN."  I'm also sure there must be a "cuntrygurl" out there somewhere who might think he's the "cat's meow", but it's not me! 

I take a deep breath and try to hang on to the tiniest thread of hope. 

But, as I proceed through the profiles with tear-blurred vision, I quickly discover that I'm hitting the delete button a lot faster than I can read the profiles popping up. I know I shouldn't judge people just on looks, but seriously?! Then, almost at the end of the list, a man smiles at me from my computer screen.  Unlike the other men I have looked at, this one is nicely professional looking.  He can actually form a complete sentence and says he's not looking for anything serious (like me). So I blow my nose and respond to his inquiry. Soon, we are chatting and he seems funny, interesting, and fairly normal. After a few days, we exchange phone numbers and agree to meet for a casual dinner date.

During the week before our date, I give the new guy my cell number. Soon we are texting off and on throughout the day.  TEXT, being the operative word, because, he never calls me.  And I am certainly not going to call hm---after all, my momma raised a lady!  Plus, being new to this dating thing, I'm thinking this is what people do in the 21st Century. Although, I do find myself a bit nostalgic for the old days of waiting for the phone to ring and hearing an actual voice. It's a little weird to realize I have no idea what he sounds like. But I do feel like I am getting to know him. He even tells me that he has several patents! So, I start calling him the Inventor!

The day of our date finally arrives and I agonize over what to wear.  I have a very good friend who is a professional matchmaker (yes, they do exist!) and she recommends that one should always wear a dress on the first date! But, since I'm going to meet the Inventor at a casual wine bar on a Thursday evening, I ignore my friend's advice and wear a cute pair of pants and a not-too-tight-but-not-too-loose top. I have a moment of pause, thinking about my ex who was never very complimentary about my choice of clothing. But I remind myself that I have good taste, all my friends say so, and walk out the door feeling good about the way I look.

When I arrive at the wine bar, with a stomach full of butterflies, the Inventor is already seated at a table and I am happily stunned that he looks better than his photo.  This has me immediately wondering how he thinks I stack up to mine.  I try to read his expression while taking in his appearance.  He has a head full of brown hair, kind eyes and a svelte physique. He is wearing a nice short-sleeeved polo  shirt and cargo shorts with a pair of topsiders.  When he stands to greet me, I notice that he has very nice legs and is taller than I expected.  

Since the Inventor and I have been chatting, I mean texting for the past week, it doesn't take long for us to break the ice and find ourselves talking and laughing about our individual situations and life experiences.  By the way, he has a very nice voice! We order a bottle of wine and dinner and I find myself thinking what an enjoyable evening this is.   As we're nearing the end of our meal, I notice that our home basketball team is playing on the big-screen TV above the bar.  It's the NBA playoffs and so I'm trying to continue our nice dialogue, while craning my neck to see the score.  The Inventor notices my distraction and asks if I'm a basketball fan.  I smile and begin to talk about the players on our home team, as well as the opposing team, and the Inventor seems quite impressed that I know my way around a basketball court. Before I know it, we are talking statistics, the NBA finals and then I hear myself ask him if he would like to come back to my place to watch the rest of the game.  The minute the words pop out of my mouth, I can't believe what I've just done!  When did I become so forward?  What do I do when we get home?  I don't know this person! But before I can quell my internal waffling, the Inventor says he would love to....so off we go!

I know you're thinking that my friend Pam would be cursing me right now, reminding me that I should never, never, never invite a man back to my place on the first date.  But...the Inventor seems very sweet, and down to earth, and I know he has his own company (he gave me a business card) and children he adores.  Besides, I'm a therapist and I read people for a living.  Plus he's an avid fan of the same basketball team as I am, so how bad could he be?  Still, I check to be sure I have my purse maize as he follows me home.

Once inside, I pour some wine and we cheer our team on to victory.  We also talk in between plays and I find him to be someone I could enjoy spending ime with.  Too soon, the game ends and it's time for him to go. Its a school night and he has a 45 minute drive home. But before he goes, he asks if he can kiss me goodnight. What a gentleman! Who am I to say no to such a nice guy?  

Low and behold, I've found myself another knee-buckler!  Wow, he kisses as well as Boots and Jeans! Which has me thinking, either I've been really lucky and managed to find the two best kissers in town, or my ex-husband really stunk at this.  I'm also poignantly aware that the Mother Ship has started her engines and is hovering!  This is not good...or maybe it's really good! The line between the two seems to be very blurry at the moment...

We extract ourselves from each other's arms, after making out like highschool teenagers for 30 minutes, and I tell him if he doesn't go home now, I may not let him.  He gets up sheepishly to leave, telling me he hopes to see me again very soon. I close the door, smiling stupidly! I'd forgotten how much fun making out is! Just making out! Then I run upstairs to have El Toro land the Mother Ship so I can get some sleep.

When I wake the next morning, the Inventor has already texted, wanting to know when he can come see me and we agree to meet on Sunday evening.  I tell him I will make dinner and he offers to bring the wine, and I busily start to plan what to make for this cute, sexy guy with such nice lips.

Sunday arrives and I've made a macadamia nut encrusted sea bass, green beans almondine, Israeli cous cous and a grape, blue cheese and walnut salad.  Right on time, the Inventor shows up with wine in hand, looking very cute.  He kisses me hello and I am pleased to discover this guy only kisses one way; deeply and passionately!  I've chilled a nice Chardonnay to drink with some cheese covered in honey on a wheat cracker I've set out as an appetize, but it seems everytime I open my mouth to talk, the Inventor is leaning in for another kiss.  I wonder if we'll even get to dinner, as my libido lurches to full alert status! if not the main course, the Inventor may be my dessert!

But then, as I'm basking in these glowing thoughts, the angel on my shoulder, who loooks very much like my sweet Polish grandmother, reminds me that, "you never sleep with a guy on the second date...or the 3rd or 4th!"  What is wrong with me?  Have I turned into a full-blown hussy, ignoring all social protocol just to satisfy this tingling in my body....mostly focused below my belly button. I contemplate this dilemma for a moment, then think to myself.....No, damnit, you are a 55 year old woman who has suddenly and surprisingly awoken in a way you never remember being awake!  You are not married, engaged, or committed to anyone and the man you are about to sleep with (because it IS going to happen) isn't married, engaged or commmitted either (at least not to my knowledge), and so we are two consenting adults who are certainly old enough to make the decision to simply enjoy a wonderfully sexual and passionate experience together.  And so, the problem is??????

That being said, I find myself waking up in the morning with the Inventor, who doesn't mind my feather bed, candles or music and has cuddled with me all night long.  He doesn't snore, is warm and affectionate, and is as avid about sex as he is about basketball!  It's a new experience on a lot of levels and I've found pleasure points I didn't know really existed, although I'd heard about them.  So after some early morning nookie, something else I haven't done in way too long, I kiss the Inventor goodbye and he promises to call me later.

BOOTS AND JEANS

Anyone who knows me will tell you that I love to travel. In fact, one of the best parts of being single again is getting to travel wherever and whenever I want. I have a passport that is about to expire and is filled up with stamps from various countries. So when I learn that Boots and Jeans doesn't possess a passport and never has, it makes me pause. I confess, I had already pictured us sharing a sunset on a beach some place south of the equator. But the pause turns out to be momentary as I realize I don't really give a shit! He's cute and sexy and incredibly nice. He's a gentleman and makes me feel beautiful, smart and wanted. He stopped smoking for me, I can't remember a single thing my ex gave up for me during our entire 15 plus year relationship! So who cares if we can only make out in the good old U. S. of A....after all there are 50 states, some of which I have never been to and many of which have beaches!

We have quickly moved into a very passionate...affair, or whatever the hell this is! I really don't know what to call it, or him for that matter. He's not my boyfriend, he's more than a friend. "Significant other" makes me grimace. Then the word "Lover" occurs to me, and I sort of like it! It sounds foreign and just a little dirty. Could I really ever introduce B & J as my lover?? The thought makes me smile and I go in search of "El Toro".

I am certainly not ready for a relationship and have sworn off ever getting married again...but whatever we are having has awakened a part of me that has been lying dormant for way too long....and it's much more fun than a first class ticket to London or, even, Paris.

But, as I have learned over and over, nothing is ever simple -

Two passionate and fun filled weeks have flown by when I learn that the woman who recently dumped Boots and Jeans wants him back. When he tells me he told her we are dating and that she immediately went ballistic, I can't stop myself from asking him how he could be so stupid? I could have predicted that and in fact, did and won myself a $20.00 bet. I should have wagered more!

This leads to a week of listening to the drama occurring in his life. I suddenly feel like I am listening to one of my clients instead of my Lover. I'm also becoming a little wary of this woman's tenacity and impulsivity. I recommend he "give her another run," which he insists he has no interest in doing. I request that he never tell her who I am, although I do have a concealed handgun license.
As the end of the week nears, I am growing weary of our nightly counseling sessions. Sessions I am not getting paid for, by the way. Although I am getting some renumeration in the bedroom!

Let's talk about the bedroom. Boots and Jeans thinks my bed is way too soft. My response is, "You are only in my bed for a few hours at a time, what's it to you?" But I agree to take off the feather topper, being the considerate girl that I am... whatever makes my man happy! Is that stupid, I'm wondering now, because I don't even want anyone to be "my man!"

I also like lighting candles and playing soft music, it sets the mood and, more importantly, I think candlelight is very flattering, if you know what I mean. However, Boots and Jeans does not feel the same. Apparently, he doesn't like noise or light! Does it interfere with his concentration or what??Okay, so now I have a dark, quiet room with a bed that's too firm...what am I thinking! Well, what I'm thinking is that he is just that good, and so I have compromised!

Now you may be asking me how I know that Boots and Jeans is that good if I am newly divorced? All I can tell you is that while he is the first horse out of the gate, he is definitely a vast improvement over the last bronco I rode!

Meanwhile, back at the ranch, the former girlfriend is threatening to leave town if he does not take her back and I am thinking...let her go!?
By the weekend, I am totally worn out, both mentally and physically, and wondering if all this drama is worth it. I have become a therapist to my Lover and that does not work for my licensing board! So on Sunday, when I don't hear from him by 7:00AM, as I usually do, I assume the girlfriend has shown up at his house - in my mind, wearing nothing but a trench coat!
And I am right, minus the coat. 20 years of experience comes in handy in and out of the office, I realize. Needless to say, I kiss Boots and Jeans goodbye via text (I'm told that's how you do it now) and wish him well, remembering what my grandmother always told me...there are lots of fish in the sea and another streetcar on the next corner. Which leads me to the Inventor!

MY FIRST NIGHT OUT!

My good friend, Pat, who has been single for 20 years or so, knowing I have been married forever and am befuddled to find myself suddenly divorced, drags me to Riddles, a singles bar/pick up joint better known as Wrinkles. An apt nickname as the average age of the patrons is around 60 - or at least it seemed to me as I gaze around in horror! Pat notices the look on my face and assures me we'll have "just one drink." I begin to laugh hysterically, probably so I won't cry, while thinking, "Oh God, this is going to be my life!  Are you kidding me?"  

We order our drinks and look around, I see an older woman wearing an outfit which closely resembles a Minnie Mouse costume, including the red hair bow and matching polka dot shoes.  She's dancing up a storm on the oval shaped dance floor. Then I realize there are men standing in line to be her next partner! Confused as to what her appeal is, I try to stop gawking and look away, soon spying a guy, who looks to be in his mid-50's, holding court at "his table." Our eyes meet, much to my dismay, and he actually WINKS at me. His hair is long and gray, his beard is unkempt to say the least, and he is wearing pants that are two sizes too tight for my taste. Maybe he's Italian?? Or just thinks he is!

My friend, Pat, who has never known a shy moment in her life, reaches out and snatches the shirt sleeve of a cute man wearing boots and jeans as he strides past us.  He is definitely the cutest guy in the room, the only cute guy I've seen anyway, and, BONUS!!, looks to be way under 60...thank God!  He pauses, looking at his captured sleeve in surprise, and Pat plunges right in, "So, what's your story?"  Leave it to Pat to be bold and adventuresome, while I just sit there blinking like some sort of mute owl.  

Well to my relief, I begrudgingly admit to myself, Boots and Jeans is not insulted by her straightforwardness and pulls up a bar stool. He orders another beer and turns to talk to Pat.  I am shocked, wondering,  "Where the hell am I?"  I keep thinking I've somehow been transported to the bar from Star Wars! Where's Chubaca? Oh yeah, he's the Italian!

Trying not to be obvious, I give Boots and Jeans a once over. He really is cute, and actually seems nice, and fairly normal.  He asks if we would like to go outside for a cigarette, to which I respond before I can stop myself, "Smoking is disgusting, and it ruins your skin. Surely you know that?"  

B & J gives me a slightly guilty smile, then shrugs and goes outside. I look at Pat, who is glaring at me. "Really?" she says, making me feel like the engenue I am in this game. I guess it was a little rude to give a virtual stranger shit for smoking. I resign myself to apologizing to him when and if he comes back in. Then, I get a fifth-grade-schoolgirl wild hair and follow him outside.

Somehow, that 3rd glass of red wine has melted away any inhibitions I may have thought I had.  As I walk out onto the patio, I see him finishing up his cancer stick. "You know, when you smoke, your mouth tastes like an ashtry when you kiss someone!"  Shit! It's out of my mouth before I know what I'm sayimg. I meant to come out here and apologize, but instead I've made matters worse. But, before I know what's happening, his ashtray tongue is in my mouth! Are those MY knees buckling?! Oh my God! Wow!  As I come up for air, I'm grasping for some kind of composure, while simultaneously thinking what the hell was that and I don't remember Marlboro Reds tasting so good.  More importantly, I am certain that I never been kissed that way in my life! It's like a slap in the face and now I'm really pissed off that I've wasted 15 years married to a non-smoker with great skin who has no fucking idea how to kiss!    

The thought that there may be a life after divorce and 55 makes me just a little giddy and I start to giggle! Yes, giggle! 

I go back inside with B & J, trying to keep my shitty grin from giving away the thoughts I'm having to Pat.  Pat asks Boots and Jeans to dance. They hit the subtly lit oval dance floor, while I watch with smoke tinged bated breath!  When the song is finally over, I quickly grab Boots and Jeans and pull him into the middle of the pink-tinged oval.  This time it's a slow dance and, boy, am I feeling lucky! Actually, I am feeling a great many things...

Let me describe Boots and Jeans;  He's hot, and I don't think it's a comparative thing, and I soon learn that he's only 45!  I'm 55 - who knew there was a smoke tinged breathed COUGAR in me!!  He has broad shoulders and a very...manly...body. I feel very small and feminine in his arms as we dance.  Works for me!  AND - He has hair!!! Lots of dark hair! His closely cropped beard is well-manicured (not at all like Chubaca, the Italian's) and the hairs of his chest, which are just peeking out of his shirt, are curly and soft. Don't ask me how I learned this so quickly...Who am I??    

Anyway, I digress.  We dance until about 1AM, then I tell Pat it's time to go home - me and Pat, not me and Boots and Jeans.  When I get home, my iphone starts tinging. It's him, and I soon learn what the term "sexting" means.  Damn, I've missed out on a lot!  The last time I was single, there were no smart phones or internet and the probing question was, "What's your sign, baby?"   

The next morning I awake with my cell phone next to my pillow and wonder, "Did I dream that?"  What the hell is going on in the dating world? Do things really move this fast? Is this normal?" But...I feel great! Especially when it dawns on me that I have not thought about my soon to be ex-husband in over 12 hours. I have a euphoric feeling that I may not have a reason to think of him much at all in the future, especially with this kind of lip locking going on.    

Suddenly, being single and divorced at 55 doesn't seem so bad, and may actually be quite life affrming, not to mention so much f'ing fun!   

Now let me make a confession - I have not had much of a libido for the last 10 years or so, which I blamed on my hysterictomy. But, as I think about Boots and Jeans and the way his lips felt on mine, I feel my libido surging back into my body, like the mother ship coming home!  Boy, have I missed her!  I'm in shock and trying to figure out what to do with this unexpected development. Then something occurs to me - Where is that vibrator? The one that never made it out of its box.  More importantly, what kind of batteries does it take, and do I have any??  I am suddenly as focused as a vivanse-snorting teenager, as I rip apart the U-Haul boxes in my one-car garage, searching for "El Toro!"  I finally locate him and rush back into my condo, breaking into the televison remote control to get the only working AA batteries I can find at 6 in the morning.  Thank God I live alone!

Well, you can imagine what happens next...I am deeply grateful to know my libido was only hibernating, emerging from her cave like a man-seeking missile!   I quickly get in the shower since I am now late for work and have no reasonable explanation as to why! The day drags on as I sit through my client sessions, trying to concentrate on their issues. Yes I'm a therapist, but, thank God, I don't have a couch and I've left "El Toro" at home!   

As the day progresses, Boots and Jeans continues to text me and we agree to meet somewhere other than Wrinkles.  I call my best friend Pam, who has never been married, to fill her in on my most recent adventures. She strongly warns me to not tell B & J where I live, just in case he turns out to be an ax-murderer, seriel rapist, or your basic deviant stalker. This causes me to freak-out just a little. Now I'm not sure what to do. However, being as resourceful as I am, and somewhat determined, I decide to call my local private investigator. I give him the info on the business card Boots and Jeans gave me and have him run a check on the guy. He comes back clean, at least criminally, and I invite him right over.  Don't tell Pam!  

The first few minute of awkwardness soon fade and we are sitting on the couch with a couple of glasses of wine. I'm thinking, well isn't this nice and civilized - then, next thing I know, he's kissing me! "You don't taste like malboro reds anymore," I say, in a voice I really don't recognize at all, to which he replies that he has quit smoking.  All I care about is that I feel like I'm melting, is it the wine or his kisses? Is it HIS kisses or just the fact that I am finally being kissed by someone who seems to really want to kiss me? I feel like someone else, someone sexy and adventurous. AND without my permission, my mind begins to wonder, what's in those jeans?  

As things progress, being a recently liberated and independent woman who can make her own decisions, I decide to consider moving to 2nd base..and maybe 3rd.  Crap, it's been so long since I've felt this turned on and sexy that I am not sure I can stop myself at 3rd, nor do I really want to. I MEAN, WHO WOULD IT HURT?  

Stay turned for the rest of the story on the continuing saga of Suddently Single after 55!

 

SUDDENLY SINGLE AT 55!

After 15 years of marriage, I found myself suddenly single at 55 years old. This was not in my life plan, but here I am. Thanks to a positive outlook on life, plenty of good friends (and good wine) and an adventuresome spirit, I decided to embrace this new journey.
It has only been a couple of months since I started down the yellow brick road of being single and dating, but oh, what an adventure it has been. As a therapist, I thought I had heard it all...guess what...not! Dating again after being married for half my life is quite the experience. I hope you enjoy my blog and laugh as hard as I have..in fact until you pee your pants, which happens when you're 55...and realize that the fun has just begun! I'm thinking maybe I should send my ex-husband a thank you note for setting me free!

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Newlysingle | Reply 15.09.2012 23.22

Loveeee this blog. Cannot wait for more. Its like a great book you cant put down.

suddenly single 04.10.2012 15.54

Hi,

I hope you have my new site address!
www.suddenlysingleat55.com

Thanks so much for your comment!

Melissa | Reply 31.08.2012 10.26

Not sure whether this makes me want to start dating again or look for a convent. All too true!

Elliott | Reply 05.08.2012 12.16

Next?? Too funny!

kathy ripps | Reply 01.08.2012 15.20

This is hysterical.

Sophia | Reply 18.07.2012 12.49

More please!!!

See all comments

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Latest comments

04.10 | 15:54

Hi,

I hope you have my new site address!
www.suddenlysingleat55.com

Thanks so much for your comment!

...
15.09 | 23:22

Loveeee this blog. Cannot wait for more. Its like a great book you cant put down.

...
31.08 | 10:26

Not sure whether this makes me want to start dating again or look for a convent. All too true!

...
05.08 | 12:16

Next?? Too funny!

...
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