Sunday, February 12, 2023

Dear Grandpa: 2023 Edition


Dear Grandpa,

How are you liking it up there? I can imagine it's better than adapting to all the changes down here. I was very proud of my look this day. I even wore a belt, which you knew I was never a fan of all the time you knew me. I guess it shows that one can always be open to change.

I'm not feeling my best today. Normally I would have just come back from the gym, but even if I'd gone today, it wouldn't have been the best workout. I think under the circumstances, I've done the right thing.

If I had to choose a theme that describes what I've been going through at the start of 2023, it was best sung by Sting ... or was it U2? I believe it's the latter, but I'll find the video and post it here.

It's true. I still haven't found what I'm looking for.

This March will make six years since my divorce. However, I marked the official end of my relationship with him when I booted him out on my birthday in 2015. I have spent lots of time rediscovering what I enjoy and working on my health in all aspects. After noticing that my attitude toward dating and relationships was shifting somewhat near the winter of last year, I decided to step back out into the stratosphere of online dating at the start of this year.

I have encountered individuals who reflect one thing on their profile only for me to discover they are fake. That's also known as being a catfish.

No, not the fish that we love to eat.

One does have to ask all the right questions to suss the person out. I would outline the ways, but it's not really important to the overall conversation.

I have encountered people who are in a rush to meet right away without having conversations first. There was this one individual who wanted to meet me after one text conversation and one phone conversation that only lasted thirty-five minutes. He didn't have any respect for my work schedule, so he was constantly texting me, even when I told him I would be unavailable during those hours because I was working. I didn't see our lifestyles being compatible, so I did what I believed was the right thing. I let him know that we wouldn't be compatible with anything romantic. He got so upset and attempted to make me feel bad for making a decision I knew was right. In these modern times, it's called gaslighting. I didn't know about this until just last year that it had an official term. We would just chalk it up to the person "lying and acting a fool". Needless to say, even though we had a rapport that could have established a friendship (because he seemed like an interesting person), because of how immature he acted with the truth, I had to delete and block him.

Side Note: Going through this makes me really miss the camaraderie I had with the late Zuberi (my best friend from high school) and Harry (my closest friend from college that I've since lost touch with). They were so easy to talk to, and they were there for me when it counted. Especially Zuberi. He was there for me when you passed on, and that meant the world to me.

You know, that for me, especially since living in New Jersey, finding genuine connections through friendship puts a person on a higher pedestal. Like, almost family.

But the way people view friendship here is with a bit of disdain. They think that being "friend-zoned" is disrespectful or just code speak for being sexual without the label of relationship (friends with benefits or situationship). It's tough to find individuals that agree with my philosophy, much less understand it.

I have encountered people who love to text but it's like pulling teeth to have a phone conversation. One person asked me out on a date. I agreed, but as the day got closer to the date, the text conversations became less. For me, I need some level of advanced notice, but he hadn't even told me where he had selected or what type of cuisine. These days I'm mostly lacto-ovo-vegetarian but eat meat once a week. It was two days prior to when he wanted to meet, but I had only heard from him once. I concluded he couldn't provide the type of availability needed for us to get to know each other, so I let him know to circle back when his schedule was more flexible. I haven't heard from him since.

I know my life is rather busy, but I am willing to carve out time. It has to be the right person. However, the person on the other end has to be willing too. Especially, if the other person has kids, but is trying to connect with me, knowing that I don't have any.

The worse culprits of all I deem the "hot and colds". They come on like gangbusters and proclaim that I'm the most awesome person they've ever encountered, only to go silent for days at a time. I kid you not. Then, they return, as if they haven't been gone for days. Yet, they expect me not to speak on the lack of engagement.

I am willing to give grace on the first "cold" scenario. When I did address it, the main thing I asked was if you are going to go on hiatus, let me know. Or even say that you're busy and that you will circle around when you're less busy. To me, that's not hard to do. I've learned that to go full ghost on people I care about without letting them know what's going on is not good for their spirit. I have learned and I do my best to be mindful of this.

With people I'm not that invested in, well ... you know me because I'm like you in that way: I can't get upset over people who I wasn't rocking with in the first place.

When the second "cold front" arrived, I gave some side-eye. I stepped back to observe behavior. Yes, there are apologies but are there corrections? By the third "cold front", I delivered the "Come to Jesus" moment. I said what I said. Don't wait until I've washed my hands of it to come correct. If that person doesn't know, they're going to know today, tomorrow, and beyond this time that once I get to a certain decision, I tend to stay in that.

My brother recently passed away. Yes, it is sad, but I am not connected with him enough to feel grief or sorrow. I do have a theory he was in the wrong place at the wrong time. I know he struggled with adjusting once he was released. When battling his demons, he lost the fight.

Mom didn't talk about what he was doing once he got out. I know she mentioned his interest in music. Everyone wants to become a rapper, it seems. Mom comes up with her own image of us to put her in a better light. I'm sure you know what that means. I feel for her, but I know I am not the best person to console her. Quite frankly, I have enough to juggle on my plate.

I know where we are now no longer fits where I want to go. It does suck because we tried to give the other person a chance, but it sucks when your own treats you the worst. That's where I'm going to leave that.

I confess, at times, I've felt overwhelmed and have to reign in the anxiety. I just have not okay days that I have to work through the moment they pop up. Therapy has been very helpful to me and I'm learning ways to navigate through it all.

I know everything will happen as it should. I'm just trying to be as patient as I can. I know with you watching over me, it'll be okay.

Happy Birthday, Grandpa.

1 comment:

Unknown said...

Sending all my love to you and Grandpa Brown. <3
~ TheRoo