Dating has been interesting. I feel as though the more I practice and meditate the more the universe sends me the most curious of suitors. But then there are those who are genuinely very kind people, generous with their time, honest with their intention and forthcoming with their situations. I’ve considered how to write this blog from the perspective of life as a more mindful woman. Here are a few of my own realizations about mindfully dating in my quest of being consciously cuffed.
It seems as though my marital status helps me in some ways and limits me in others. I’ve been through the whole I do thing and I don’t want to I do myself into despair ever again. People totally change and change is a part of life but I have to be honest folks out here claiming ownership over a partner and marriage seems more like a hostage situation for a lot of people. I use my practice of mindfulness to work through the fear of how a future partner could change on me in ways that are abusive and toxic. But instead of letting the fear consume me I forgive myself for being afraid and allow myself to experience moments without looking for reminders of what hurt me in the past. If I hear something familiar or see something that looks like what I experienced in the past I take some time to work through the feelings of familiarity to find with is authentic with this person right now.
I’m a mother.
Him: I don’t want any new kids
Me: …….well you know I have three kids
Him:…… At the moment I can’t see myself raising other peoples kids when I don’t have my children full time
I remember how devastating it was to hear that from someone I truly adored. I absolutely could have rolled my eyes and chucked the deuces but then I thought why is how he feels not ok. I fully acknowledge there are men out there who for their own reasons may be financial, emotional, or life plan do not see a family of 4 as something they are interested in. I learned to forgive men like that but learned how to listen to the truth of others. It is ok for people to have preferences for their lives and while it was hurtful to hear I too know that caring for a family of 10 is not easy. My being a mother and dating has allowed me to see that I may keep kind company who never interacts with my children and even if they do nothing serious has to come of it. It is ok to chill as families make some memories and keep life light.
I ended up on the phone with Oeski talking about dating and he asked me what I wanted and what I was looking for. I couldn’t even answer the question because I had no clue. I knew what I didn’t want and that was getting me nowhere. Now I at least know what I value in a potential partner and also am clear on what it is that I have to offer (cause when you’ve been in grad school as long as I have you begin to wonder LOL).
So how does one mindfully date?
- Be aware of your habits in thought. All situations are not exactly the same. The person in front of you is not the person you divorced (unless it is the person you divorced and you’re giving them another chance WAY TO GO!!!)
- Be kind. Dating can be really uncomfortable and new especially if you’re not used to it. Care about the person who you are sharing time with be considerate of their work schedule and their energy. While we would like to be prioritized be reasonable if someone is writing a thesis then value the time spent together instead of hitting them with some passive aggressive kind of love.
- Have gratitude. I think I may have fallen in love the moment someone said to me they appreciated being able to have the opportunity to get to know me. It isn’t easy to let people into your lives or to have access to your thoughts, body, your home so when there is closeness allowed to see it and bathe in it with lots of gratitude.
- Extend forgiveness. People will be late, people will miss calls, people will reschedule. Things come up. It isn’t to say that a skittish kind of person shouldn’t be side-eyed I’m saying what is the big deal with some hiccups in the road? Now if those hiccups are potholes then read number 5.
- Discernment is bae! LOL, My mom is the MVP for telling me to stop bringing home strays. Everyone who looks good doesn’t fill your cup. It is ok to realize there is an attraction with little compatibility. Move accordingly through your moments and be courageous for asking yourself is this what you really want.
- Listen to your heart. You may have a list….I didn’t and I don’t have a list (well its more of a table than a list LOL) listen to what your heart says about people. They may not have the car you want or credit you prefer, they may already have a family but it is ok to have patience and it is ok to fall in love and choose not to move forward. I was planning a wedding in Ireland a few years ago lol….we realized this isn’t going to work, we deeply loved each other but it wasn’t in the cards for us. We let each other go and listened to our hearts. Surely it was a moment I accepted this is why he was such a good man…..he knew how to listen to himself and that is always attractive.
- Be patient and be aware of how you are choosing to live uncuffed. Deciding to be in a relationship comes with responsibilities and transparency.
- Take care to address your own needs before creating a situation where your partner is responsible for your self-care. Expecting others to know how to handle your emotions or know the exact words to say is unreasonable. Compassion and empathy may be your superpowers, you may truly have all the right things to say at the right time…..but that is you.
- Expectations are limitations, enjoy making moments into memories and when and if things don’t pan out hold onto the valuable vibes and all the others let go.
- Sharing time takes time. Place your dating life into the framework of your week in ways that don’t take away from the other things you love or the other people you love. Create time for just you during your week as well as time for sharing with love interests. The more practice you have loving on you the easier it is to feel whole and yummy as company for others.
Life uncuffed has been so different and stressful lol….but I’m so grateful to have a mindset that allows me to enjoy company without being too entrenched in my feelings. I’m grateful for the kindness and offerings from people genuinely wanting to get to know me and I look forward to what the future brings me as I continue to work on myself. Happy cuffing!