Dating


Seriously, is 2010 thisclose to being over?

As I look back at 2010, it’s really hard for me to capture my favorite moments of the year, but I plan to do that, as this year as turned into one of the best years of my life…something I never dreamed possible so soon after my divorce.

As part of that, I wanted to look back at some of my favorite posts of 2010 (here’s my list from last year – some of these continue to be my all-time favorites!):

  1. My blog series on my divorce: Probably one of the hardest things I have ever written, but with the most reward. The comments and feedback (emails and on my blog directly) were simply amazing.
  2. There’s Gotta Be Someone for Me Out There: My dealbreakers (and this list also ties in). And man, Doctor Boy fits all of these. Realizing that now as I re-read that post. Wow.
  3. Happy Birthday To Be Determined!: My blogoversary post was fun to write, and also tied back to some of my favorite posts and reasons why I blog.
  4. “When the world whispers ‘give up, Hope whispers, try it one more time:” One of several posts on Nala’s illness this year that I cried through writing (this was the other one) and knowing now that she is SO much better, my heart sings. I remember writing this and just praying so hard for improvement. Wow.
  5. “If I had a single flower for every time I think about you, I could walk forever in my garden:” One year anniversary of my Nonna’s passing. I still miss her every single day, but can feel her all around me. Always.
  6. My Man Audits (I and II) – these are just funny. Give ’em a read (perhaps gives new appreciation for finally finding love with Doctor Boy, no?
  7. Maine, if you were a man, I’d marry you. Wow, I already can’t wait to get back to Maine this summer. Absolutely my favorite memories and posts this year were about Maine. Brings me back to that happiness instantly.
  8. Sometimes all you need is family and a lot of faith: I wrote a lot about my sister Jen’s illness after she had my niece Isabel and this post makes me cry every time I read it. I was scared, I was worried and my heart was breaking for my sister. Looking back now, I am eternally grateful for her health now and my dear niece Isabel, well, I just love her to pieces…cue, next favorite blog:
  9. An Open Letter to my Niece Isabel Ann: This post is probably one of my top 3 favorite posts this year. I love her so much and the instantaneously love I felt for her will never, ever wane.
  10. Defining the Feeling and “Can I ask you a Question?”Two defining moments for me this year, beyond all else. I found love. Finally. Yes, this is it.
  11. And my bonus favorite post this year? My “I want” post – is still my all-time favorite post for the sheer fact that I got some of the best feedback I have ever gotten from you all. Thank you. Always.

It was so hard to pick some of my favorites because each and every post I write, I write with purpose and with meaning. I love to write, I love to share my story and I love, love, love all of the feedback and this blog family that gets bigger by the day.

2010…well, she had a fair share of ups and downs by as this year slowly comes to a close, the ups far outweigh the downs, like whoa.

I’m learning a lot from my relationship with Doctor Boy.

Like being honest is key.

Like allowing for a little “room” in my routine.

…but also making sure I don’t get lost in un-routine either.

Yesterday morning, we woke up and I was hell-bent on getting my workout done (and not sleeping in *too* much, as I knew I had a lot to get done at home, like errands, and cleaning and my “usual” Saturday routine that calms me. Yes, cleaning and errands calm me and organize me! It’s part of my type A- nature!) and then going home to get started on said routine.

Doctor Boy asked me to stay for breakfast. And knowing that I had a lot to get done, I thanked him, but opted to go home to get things done.

When I left, I immediately felt a little selfish and too rigid in my “routine” (even though, for the record, I tossed said routine out the window the weekend prior because I had a busy weekend and sometimes it just doesn’t get done, even for me). And I texted him and told him that I felt badly for leaving without breakfast with him first, but that sometimes I just need to get to my routine.

And he said that it’s one thing he’s tried to do…de-routine sometimes.

Which made me feel worse.

But then he proceeded to tell me “not to change a thing” because it’s what makes me “me” and he loves for who I am (even with my sometimes-rigid routine).

So, I’m learning.

To be honest and stick to what I want to do, even if it isn’t always compromise. (because as much as I am all for compromise and meeting in the middle, I also think there is value with sticking to what you want, even if it’s as ‘small’ as simpling going home sans breakfast)

But also that as much as I have my own routine, I also have someone else in my ‘routine’ with me and I need (and want) to allow for that too. I’m still adjusting to maintaining balance and the in-between, and it takes a level of deliberance (is that a word), that I often think about. As natural and as much as I want to spend every waking minute with Doctor Boy, I also still completely enjoy my ‘me’ time (which includes my routine) and I think that’s okay.

I think it’s important to maintain that sense of self and individuality in a relationship. At least it is for me.

And the fact that Doctor Boy loves that about me means a lot. He respects it, and I respect his similar need to spend time with his friends and family too.

It feels as though the making for something special, long term, is really and truly there. I’ve felt it for awhile now, but I’m more sure than ever now. I learn every day, I learn.

After so many comments on my blog posts the last two days (here and here), and my own frustration over feeling misunderstood, and in a sense, judged, I thought I needed clarity.

But I don’t.

After sleeping on it, and realizing that a) everyone has an opinion and it may not be the same as mine and b) I am choosing happiness whenever I can, because it works for me (doesn’t mean it’ll work for you), and c) I’m blessed to have so many people actually reading and engaging in my blog.

It means much more than I ever thought possible.

So, thank you, for all of your comments, whether I agreed with them or not. They gave me food for thought, and even though I did feel the need to justify myself, in a sense, with parts of yesterday’s post, I stand by my view – happiness is a choice – for me.

~~

On the note of blogs, a few that made me beam today?

First, my sister Jen’s latest installment of her blog posts recapping her ordeal after my niece Isabel’s birth. It’s a touching read, and I feel so blessed and grateful that things are getting back to (a new) normal, and that I have been able to play a part in helping my sister recover and spend some invaluable time with my niece, who I love dearly.

Second, T’s post on ‘everyone deserves to feel beautiful AND worth it.” Amen to that, and it’s a beautiful poem.

Third, Use Your Words Mommy’s post that mentions my story as part of her inspiration that love IS out there again. Wow, I really never thought I’d be “that” person that others would look towards as an example that it can happen. Finding love. I was that person, looking for it, and seeing beautiful love stories (like Sunshine and CGB – congrats you two, two years strong!) helped me when I doubted it would happen for me.

And finally, Soccer Mom’s “award” which included me and Magnolia’s beautiful words, wow, just wow – thank you – you made my day!

It’s the first morning in awhile that I’ve had a chance to “do” my Saturday routine, which goes something like this: workout, make breakfast, clean my place, do laundry and grocery shop, and then catch up on blogs and DVR, as time permits 😉

It’s been a string of busy – but fun – weekends with Doctor Boy as well as with friends and family, so I am by far not complaining in the least, but it brings me back to a point I’ve blogged about before.

The balance between the “me” and the “us.”

I like to think of where I am right now is the “in-between.”

We aren’t at the point where it’s more “we” than “me” and “him” but we are completely comfortable spending time with each other where we aren’t go-go-go all the time, and there is still a healthy balance of family, friend and “me” time with a healthy dose of “us” time. I am glad we have come to this point together, and I haven’t compromised what I think I would be in danger of doing if I was with someone that I didn’t click so well with, or someone that I didn’t know exactly where I stand in his heart. If I were worried about him “losing interest” or something, I think I would be more tempted to just become the “yes woman” – someone I never want to be.

What else is different now than a few months ago when Doctor Boy and I first started dating?

I’m at the point that I enjoy every last minute with him even more than the last. And I’m at the point where it’s no longer necessary to “entertain” each other every minute we are together. We can co-exist and do our thing but together at the same time. I really dig that. The other night I needed to get some work done, but had planned to go to his place for dinner, and he happily set about making dinner (delicious chickpea soup and a shrimp stir-fry. Yum!) while I got things done. I really dig that too.

We’re entering a phase in our emerging relationship that I am really loving. We’re getting deeper and deeper into figuring out what makes each other tick (such as our inability to make a decision!), how we feel about each other (the love I see in his eyes, and mine in return is quite powerful. Even my dad – who’s not the most touchy-feely emotional guy in the world – said I had a glow about me when he met him last weekend), and goals we both have in our careers, lives, and things we see sharing together in the future (hello, vacation…Playa del Carmen, anyone?).

So, while I am thoroughly enjoying my “me” day today, and feel gloriously caught up on everything I hadn’t been before, it’s not something that throws me off balance as much as I feared, when we first started dating. It’s something I know I can have when I need it, and it’s something I can have with him around, too, which I think is very important, as we continue our relationship.

It’s just so interesting to me to see how things are unfolding so naturally with him. Every day I have a smile on my face. Every day I feel loved and cared for. And every day I feel those emotions growing more and more in me. Where the in-between grows smaller, naturally, and normally.

Because even though the “we”continues to grow and develop, it still means I can have the “me” and that’s the happy medium I strive for.

Balance. Happiness. Love. It can all co-exist.

Two people that can’t make a decision.

😉

Look! It’s the first thing I’ve identified that is something that I know Doctor Boy and I will have to work on together. Simply put, we are both 100% Libras through and through that we love compromise *almost* as much as we love each other, and I think that could eventually be something that could be problematic.

And I don’t say that in the sense that it’ll be some huge make-or-break, but just that it could be something we will have to work through, so we both are happy, but not bending so much to the other for the sake of compromise.

A small example of that happened today.

He asked if I would be free to meet his parents for lunch tomorrow (we are going to a wine event tomorrow night in Boston with some friends and my sister, a detail worth noting for this story, and hey, it’s going to be a blast!). And knowing that the drive to where lunch is and getting back in time to get ready for the evening, I was stressing about trying to jam it all in.

So he said I didn’t have to, there would be another time.

But then I asked him but what do YOU want me to do?

And he said, “whatever works is fine, either tomorrow or during Thanksgiving. I don’t want you to be stressed about getting back in time for the evening.”

Now, we went back and forth like this all afternoon. “I’ll try to make it work, I want to meet your parents, and I know you would do it for me.”

Sort of like that question of “what do you want to do?” “I dunno, what do you want to do?” that never ending cycle of niceties. (and despite my feeling selfish for even considering *not* meeting his parents tomorrow, he still told me how much it means to him that I even want to, and that I am trying to make it work regardless. Swoon.)

It was a pretty humorous afternoon of back and forth, to the point of, “really, are we really overcomplicating this that much?” and we settled on a plan that works to fit it all in. But it struck me – it’s something that will probably come up in the future, and as I learned in my (former) marriage, I never want to “not fight” if that means resolution and communication.  And what I mean by that is – healthy fighting (arguing) is just that – healthy. And when you never fight, issues grow, and deepen and become so massive that it becomes counter-productive and damaging.

I feel good realizing this now, and learning that sometimes our best qualities…compromise, willingness, balance, can sometimes be inadvertently negative.

(and part of me wonders if my initial hesitation to jam everything into one day for the sake of meeting his parents has something to do with my past rocky relationship with my ex in-laws…a post for another time, something I will ruminate on…).

Regardless, I’m looking forward to yet another weekend of friends, family and Doctor Boy and I hope you all have a great weekend (and consider my post yesterday as my ‘Quote Friday’ – tonight’s post was too timely to put off!).

When you’re happy, there’s *less* to blog about.

Funny how that works, isn’t it?

I have tried to remain somewhat restrained in how often I blog about Doctor Boy for fear of sounding overly, sickingly gushy, and puppies, rainbows, muffins, and kitties *all* the time, but dammit, that’s how I feel right now!

Is that so wrong? Are you sick of my bantering on about how well things are going? Do share, because I honestly don’t want to be *that* person either.

I do, however, want to share just how refreshing it is to be with someone that you honestly, 100% enjoy spending time with. And to not overthink about, and to be able to talk futures without it feeling scary or rushed. Like vacations. Holidays. Even…living together.

No, not now, but it’s definitely something that came up this weekend. For the future.

…and that doesn’t scare me at all.

…and that doesn’t make me feel like we’re rushing.

…because even though he mentioned it, I was thinking it.

We’re on the same page, and as Shannon aptly put it, there is a “brilliant jive” between us that I can’t even capture as perfectly as it is.

It’s just there.

Swoon.

(I showed him my “Swoon” post last night and he was pretty much floored, because it was exactly how he felt after that date, as I suspected. I just don’t think he realized how very much on the same page we were on that from day one as we are. And today, two months later to the day, I can’t believe how happily in love with this man as I am).

*end happy gushy post*

So, on this lazy Sunday evening, I’ve decided to post the responses from Doctor Boy to all of your questions…here goes!

From Susan:

Do you think it was love at first sight for both of you? Did you have a funny feeling you’d met doctor boy before you met him if that makes sense?

I think that there was something special there when I met you. I feel like I knew you more than I did when we first met, there was definitely a connection that was beyond just a first date. I couldn’t wait for our next date!

From Lisa:

I’ve worked in the medical field for 20 years in a teaching hospital. What stage of his residency is he in? Or has he completed medical school and in private practice? Specializing in anything in particular?

I specialize in family medicine. Originally, I was going to do pediatrics but decided to go into family because I wanted to be more versatile. In family, I can still care of children, but I wanted to take care of children throughout their whole life span. Elders present a growing group of at-risk people that need primary care providers to take care of them. (note: he is a nurse practitioner, not a physician).

From NYSoonerGirl:

What specifically interested him in becoming a doctor?

I naturally like taking care of people. I enjoy helping others. I felt that this field was a natural choice for me. Plus there is always job security! 😉

How does he feel about cats?

I love cats. I am definitely a cat lover. I like dogs, but I like cats better. Sometimes I wish I could lounge around the house all day like a cat (note: Nala and Kayla absolutely LOVE him…and that takes a lot of trust, at least for Kayla. A good sign, no?!)

What’s his favorite thing to do when he has down time?

In a perfect world, I’d spend most of my time with you (me!). Other than that, in my little downtime, I enjoy cooking, working out, reading a good book, and obviously just lounging around and relaxing (I concur!).

From Nuttycow:

Does he know about the blog? What does he think (if yes) and would you ever tell him (if no?)

(note: he doesn’t read my blog but is aware of it).

I know about it, I don’t know exactly what goes into it, and I respect your privacy for it, so I don’t press the issue to read it. Maybe one day when you are ready, you will show it to me. I support it 100% if it’s a method for you to share and discuss your feelings.

From Jess:

What do you see in my sister that made you fall for her (I mean, I KNOW what makes her awesome, she’s hot stuff, super smart, wicked funny, has a nice ass, a great catch all in all). But I want to know what did it for you.

Well Jess, I think you’ve done all the work for me on that one! I think that the outward things, like beauty and intelligence, not just physically and inward beauty, patience, hot body too, sure, but ultimately it’s what is on the inside. It’s the feeling I get when I look into your eyes, the emotion I feel when I am with you and in my arms. The feeling of excitement I get when I think about the future together. (aww…)

PS – my career choice has made it difficult for me to be calm in life. Stuff is always in the back of my mind that makes it difficult. But when I am with you, it all goes away.

From T (adapted a few from her post she suggested):

Do you believe in God? What is your relationship with God? (important/not important to share similar beliefs?

I do believe in God. I believe that God is my creator. I used to have a much better relationship with God in the past, but I find I am more distant from God now, for several reasons, nothing specific, no good reason why, just busy. I do want to get that relationship back, first was working on weekends, which made it hard. I do have a connection, I believe I should treat others how they want to be treated.

Do you accept her for who she is and her past?

I think one of the things that attracts me to you is sharing similar pasts, in many ways. Our trials and tribulations, good and bad, has led us to where we are today. Made us appreciate who we are, as a couple, not just as people. I appreciate her for all she is. (man, he should be writing this blog! ;-))

(and one from me, cuz I’m slightly curious, though I think I know the answer):

What do you think about her relationship with her ex? Does it make you jealous at all?

Not jealous at all. Ten years ago, I would have been somewhat jealous. At this point, I trust her and understand their relationship is a friendship and I don’t question it. And I trust her enough to know that if she had feelings for her ex, she would tell me (I don’t.).

(and I just told him I added that question in…he called me a sneak!) 😉

So, there you have it, whatcha think!?

~~

It’s been another amazing weekend. Good mix of friend, family, and time with Doctor Boy. I’ll leave you with a picture of us before we headed out to Boston for dinner and then drinks with two of his closest friends (hopefully I made  a good impression!) Happy Sunday!

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