I’m Glad I’m a Grown-Up: February’s Last Thought

I loved college.  I grabbed a hold of that experience, held on and wrung out every bit of fun that was possible for years – including summer sessions.  Even better than college was AFTER college.  After a year of living for the weekend (and going back to college) on a small island, I spent 5 years living in Maine’s largest city, being a bar district regular, and reigning as the Princess of Portland.

I physically moved on.  I ended up living in a couple large cities, and I’ve had a fun time in my 30s. I didn’t rip it up like the 20s, but it was pretty great. Sure, my alcohol tolerance isn’t what it was, my feet couldn’t take a whole night of dancing, and I called a cab instead of walking home.  My husband has told me, repeatedly, that I’m living in the past, too obsessed with college and my 20s.

I admit, I still keep in touch with friends I’ve had from those times.  We have more than enough #tbt dirt on each other.  Unfortunately we’ve also bonded over the loss of some of our mutual friends – taken from us much too young.  I go home usually once a year to see my parents.  My trips end up including visits with friends and my favorite places.  I like to watch what some people think of as “teen” shows.  But, honestly, either I watch because I like the actors playing the parents, or it’s about vampires.

Not bad.

Not bad.

It doesn’t hurt that I still can pass for being in my 20s.  I love getting carded.  I feel better than I did when I was in my 20s.  I’ve mastered dressing better and I’ve rehabbed the mistakes I made in over plucking my eyebrows.  I have some really awesome jewelry now including 3 wedding rings.

After a conversation on Twitter with a friend from college I came to the realization that without seeing it happen – I grew up. Despite my husband’s protests, my love of 90s music, and the fact that I get off the airplane in Portland and go straight to Margaritas – I’m a grown up and I’m okay with it.

I don’t miss the craziness and uncertainty of that time in my life.  I’m glad I no longer am drawn to drama.  I’m happy with who I am.  I like things about myself, even when I’m striving to improve them.  I have advice to offer women younger than me, because there is a lot of thing I wish I had know when I was in that spot.  I don’t envy the young anymore, I just want to see them have an awesome life and enjoy themselves as much as I do.

It doesn’t bother me that my doctor, hair stylist and boss are younger than me.  I don’t view age as a peg of authority anymore, I now see it as expertise and accomplishment – and we aren’t all going to have the same at any age.

I looked up to women my current age when I was in my 20s as surrogate big sisters and I hope others do the same with me now.  But I dreaded getting older and growing up even if it made me like those women.  I didn’t want to get boring!

I’m not boring.  I love my life and every experience I’ve had.  I’m looking forward to the ones I’m going to have.  I might end up with gray hairs and some wrinkles, but it’s going to be okay when it happens.

Friend Makin’ Mondays: Relationships and Dating

This will be interesting, fun and probably a little hard of a blog post to completely finish. I’m married. I just celebrated my 4th wedding anniversary and I’ve been dating my husband for 12 years this Christmas Eve. That’s a long freakin’ time! We’re a very solid couple. Right now we aren’t living together for work reasons. He has a fantastic job in a start up in Silicon Valley, and I’m in San Diego living in our condo. There’s a ton of reasons why I’m NOT moving up to be there. San Diego is home to both of us. We’re incredibly grounded and happy here. This is the place where we want to live our lives. Having a San Diego base keeps him from getting caught in the craziness of the Valley. To sell or rent our condo, we’d need to do significant upgrades. I’m starting a business here. Our friends are here and the friends we have here are seriously our family. We belong here, but this is not where his best opportunity is at the moment.

So, we’re making it work. He flies back on weekends. I try and go up for a week once a month. We have a lot of IM conversations during the day, which is pretty much normal if you’re with someone in the tech industry. He gets to work the hours he needs to work without any guilt of his wife at home.

It’s tough. I miss him. When we’re together for a week or more the separation is much worse and raw. I expect change to happen. I don’t know when, I don’t know what. But for now we are going with it all. So I’ll do my best to answer today’s questions. I have friends who are back to dating after divorce in some cases, so maybe that will help me?

FMM

If you’ve taken part in FMM then you know the rules. If you’re new, please take a moment to answer this week’s question on your own blog then add your link in the comments section here at: http://www.alltheweigh.com so we can all see your FMM questions and answers. Please invite your blog readers to add their links here too so everyone has to opportunity to be seen. The idea is to connect with other awesome bloggers so take a moment to post your own FMM post and comment on a couple of other posts. Now it’s time for this week’s topic!

Relationships and Dating

1. List five characteristics that you think are important in a significant other.
Willingness to communicate. Crucial! Things need to be said.
A sense of humor. Life is crazy, you have to laugh about it all.
Honesty. There’s never a good reason to not be honest. I’m lucky I married a terrible liar.
Sense of present. Not the gift variety. Knowing that here and now is important. Enjoy the present. Live for the moment. Don’t take today or tomorrow for granted. Appreciate what’s around you now.
Integrity. If you are hitching your star to someone else’s, it better be going in a direction you can appreciate as well. Someone you believe in, who believes in you, and that you can stand together and know that you are being the best you can be.

2. If you had to choose between staying single for the next two years (as in, no dating at all,) or receiving $10,000, which would you choose? Even if I was single, I’d pass on the money. Having a good relationship is such a gift, and if you are single you have no idea who is just around the corner. Timing is everything, and why mess with what could be your time over some cash?

3. What is your relationship status? Are you satisfied with it? I’m happily married! I covered everything I wanted to say about this above. I’m so glad I married the man I did. We’re better together than we ever were apart.

4. Would you date someone who has children? If I found myself single at this point, sure. I don’t plan on having children myself. I don’t like ALL kids. But, I don’t hate them either. At some stage in your life, having children in the mix is all but a given with dating. (And like I told a friend earlier tonight – if you are ever dating a man with kids who rails on his ex-wife as a harpy who makes his life hell – better run. Men that diss their baby mommas better look in the mirror. They were in that relationship, too.)

5. Would you date someone who’s shorter than you? I probably would have said no in my 20’s, but I don’t think it really matters much. I find myself attracted to really tall men. 6’4″ used to be my magic number, but I married a 6’1″ who slouches. A women being smaller than a man is such an outdated part of our collective culture. Women are not less than men, in any way. We can make more $, have a great job, and yes, be taller. I hate that diminutiveness is considered attractive in a woman.

Celebrating our wedding anniversary by doing one of our favorite things - drinking wine!

Celebrating our wedding anniversary by doing one of our favorite things – drinking wine!

6. Would you date someone who has different political views? I think that depends on HOW different. My husband and I have pretty similar views, but they definitely diverge in some areas. We’re both liberal. He’s more of an anarchist and I’m more of a socialist. No, I’m not a member of the Communist Party and he doesn’t destroy stuff. I think that political views and alignment over some issues are certainly part of the mix when finding someone you get along with. Some couples like Carville and Matalin find a way to make it work, so it can happen. (FYI, in college, actually before I got really liberal and I was still a registered Republican, a guy broke up with me for being “too liberal”. He’d really run now!)

7. If you were going on vacation together, would you choose the beach or the mountains? The beach because there’s likely more going on. My husband is a city boy through and through and quiet drives him crazy. Not having WiFi would kill him on vacation. I’d prefer the beach because I’m so comfortable whenever I’m near the water.

8. How do you show someone that you’re interested in them? Back in THE DAY (College!) I’d say I would show them I was interested basically by stalking them. I’d just happen to be where they were! Imagine that! In high school I’d time roughly how long it would take for a certain someone to go to his locker, get his stuff and walk by where mine was, so we always left the same time. In college I’d go to the dining hall nearest to his dorm. I would totally do drive bys! It was moderately creepy, but it got results for me AND my friends. I’d do crazy things to get a number for a friend. As I got older, and ballsier, I’d just tell them. But probably after a little stalking.

9. Do you prefer to date people who are older than you or younger? I always preferred older. But not too much. I dated younger guys and married someone 2 years younger than me. My rule was “Must be born in the 1970’s” when I was an active dater. I never broke it! I went from 1971 to 1979 though. 🙂

10. Share some details of your dream date. Okay, dream date with my husband! It would be here in San Diego. We’d spend part of the day at the Zoo or just doing stuff around the city. Then we’d have a nice dinner, hopefully involving red meat to help with my anemia. We’d go to a fantastic dessert restaurant to top it off, and then at the end if we could manage to keep going (but this is a dream, so let’s say we do) we’d end up at my favorite dueling piano bar.

Friend Makin’ Mondays: Getting to Know Each Other

I am back from my wedding anniversary trip! I got home around 10 last night and found a very cranky, needy kitty waiting for me. It was a rough night, she really missed me. She had a lot more separation anxiety than she usually does.

We drove to Paso Robles from Palo Alto and spent a day wine and olive oil tasting. It was a very low key trip, but super fun. And now, no more wine as we’re embarking on another Paleo cleanse. I’m not calling it Whole30 this time because I know I’m not going to be as strict and Patrick’s only committing to 28 days. So Whole28(sorta) wouldn’t be a good name, now would it?

FMM

If you’ve taken part in FMM then you know the rules. If you’re new, please take a moment to answer this week’s question on your own blog then add your link in the comments section here at: http://www.alltheweigh.com so we can all see your FMM questions and answers. Please invite your blog readers to add their links here too so everyone has to opportunity to be seen. The idea is to connect with other awesome bloggers so take a moment to post your own FMM post and comment on a couple of other posts. Now it’s time for this week’s topic!

Getting to Know Each Other

1. What is your favorite flower? By the strictest definition of this, I’m going to say Star-gazer Lilly. But, I also love lilac blooms. They smell amazing.

2. What is a date on the calendar that you’re looking forward to? October 12 because my friend Amiyah will be home from Singapore briefly! I miss her. She’s there working for 2 years and I definitely intend to go visit.

3. List at least five characteristics of your ideal mate. Sense of humor, integrity, open-mindedness, kind, must love cats.

4. What is your favorite travel destination? I’ve only been once, but I’d love to go back to London and show it to my husband. I love that there’s so much history there and that things have been there for a long time. We take for granted what a young country we are.

5. What is your idea of the perfect date? I’m a fan of dinner and a movie! A chance to talk, a chance to get entertained, it doesn’t get much better than that. I know it’s simple, but sometimes that’s better than the more elaborate things. I’m sure zip lining in the rainforest is awesome, but I like just being present.

6. What is your relationship with your family like? I’m close to my parents. We talk once a week and I think of them both often. My mom and I have a little trouble with boundaries. My dad is difficult to get to open up. I love my extended family, but there’s lots of hurt feelings that taints things. My mom has a lot of half siblings and I’m not that close to that side of the family. They are nice and we sometimes spend holidays with them, but I didn’t grow up with them. All of my grandparents have passed.

7. What time did you wake up this morning? 7:14 officially, but my cat didn’t let me sleep much at all. So probably that could be MANY times.

8. What characteristic do you like most about yourself? Which do you dislike most? I really like my memory. I retain so much. It annoys my friends that I can recall the dumb things they do. It helps me with trivia. It helps me remember which cart I was in on a ride so that I can collect my sunglasses when that cart comes back through. True story. Dislike? I’m not brief at all. I have to express myself in way to much detail. I have a really hard time distilling things to their core.

9. What is your favorite sport to watch?I love hockey, but I think tennis is my favorite. Since I play it, I understand the rules well and I understand what a mental game it is. It’s almost as dramatic as wrestling to me!

10. Share a few interesting things that you did over the weekend. We went olive oil tasting and I realized how different olive oils can taste – not just the infusion oils. I also tried ghost pepper salt, which was HOT. Of course we went wine tasting. We also saw The World’s End at a theater in Paso and that was really a fun movie! Of course, I had fun just being with my husband since we usually spend the week days apart.

This is what olive oil tasting can look like after 2 wine tasting trips.  Messy!

This is what olive oil tasting can look like after 2 wine tasting trips. Messy!