About the Experiment

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Five Things I Learned in 2015 (Part 1)

Dear blog,
I’ve missed you!  Sorry I’ve been away for so long, I’ve wanted to write for a while and didn’t know what to say.  A lot has happened since May, so to catch up I made a list of Five Things I Learned in 2015:

1. My heart moves at its own speed
When a friend was advocating for me to break up with Bachelor #9 in November 2014 she said, “That way you’ll be ready for a sexy New Year’s date!”  Instead I spent New Year’s as a 7th wheel (the only single person with three couples), and after several tequila shots I met a guy who happened to have the same name and be the same age as Bachelor #9 and made out with him.  (Cue reaction.) Not my idea of a sexy New Years date, and I clearly wasn’t over B#9. 

I spent most of the year trying to get over him, and I think how long it took frustrated many of my friends.  B#9 and I tried to remain friends, but our friendship became more affectionate over time and I felt like he was sending mixed signals.  After one of many “what are we doing/what do you want” talks in July he said he needed space.  I pined, wallowed, eventually dated (a guy I dated actually sent me that gif, but more on that later).  By November I realized that my heartache was increasing instead of subsiding, so I reached out to B#9.  He said he still needs space, and I haven’t heard from him since.  I assume at some point he’ll resurface, but I’m not waiting.  As a friend recently wrote, “You can only break someone's heart so many times before you begin to kill the part of them that loved you in the first place.”  He's broken my heart too many times, and I realized that I don’t want to be with someone who is so avoidant.  But I had to figure that out for myself, as we all have to figure out things in our own time.  Friends and family can tell us but our hearts and minds only really listen when we’re ready, and when people tried to beat me over the head with it I only felt worse.  I appreciate those who showed understanding and compassion, as it helped me to accept the speed at which my heart goes.  And I advocate for acceptance of the unique dances that each of our hearts do, to have more compassion for your heart and others!

2. Change is MUCH easier said than done: 
I’ve talked to a lot of people this year about Order Muppets and Chaos Muppets, it usually gets a laugh out of people and it’s an interesting way to get to know someone.  It’s especially useful in a dating context, because it allows people to tell you upfront where they are on the Chaos Muppet/Order Muppet continuum.  After dating B#9 I realized that though I usually dated Chaos Muppets, I was better off with someone who was more of an Order Muppet (though maybe not as much of an OrderMuppet as B#9 is).

And then I dated the most chaotic Chaos Muppet I’ve ever dated.  *Facepalm*

A few weeks after B#9 said he needed space, I decided to test the waters on dating.  I’d taken a dating hiatus for much of the year because dating seemed like a chore, but (perhaps not taking the above advice about the speed of my heart) I started swiping on Tinder.  OkCupid requires a lot of time and felt overwhelming, but Tinder seemed manageable and appropriate for dipping my toe in the dating pool.  I hoped to go on a few dates and see how I felt, but instead I met one guy and ended up in a relationship that was overwhelming and scary.  On our first date he said that it was really important to him that I felt safe with him, but in the week (yes, week) we dated and the following week in which we tried to be friends, he hurt me physically and emotionally.  I cut all contact with him and thankfully haven’t seen him since, but it shook me to my core.  And I was so mad at myself, I felt like I knew better or at least I should’ve known better.  But it’s hard to change who you’re drawn to, even when you “know better.”  I haven’t gotten back on Tinder since, and have at times been frustrated by the Chaos Muppet parade that has been my love life can be but know that recognizing the problem is the first step to change.  And I focus on what I am looking for in a partner: kind, easy-going, overall positive and supportive, all of which are the opposite of the guys I usually date!  

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