Greetings to all! The Unleashed One here. I hope everyone is doing well, or at least, the best they can. For me, it has been a "challenging" (understatement) couple of months since my last entry on Easter. Some of the tumult I won't be discussing ... because it isn't my story to tell ... but I can't deny the number it did on my mental health, which also, subsequently, manifested physically.
And this was before the air quality issue brought about by the Canadian wildfires. Once that hit, then my respiratory issues became exaggerated and did me in a few days as well.
To top that off, I ended up suffering severe pain, irritation, and inflammation that landed me in Urgent Care where I had to get put on a series of antibiotics and pain medication. Luckily, this has helped. I should be done with the antibiotics by Tuesday.
It seems to be my pattern ... the lulls coming in threes.
Today was the first day in nearly two weeks I had gone to the gym. I was tempted to go back sooner but I wanted to make sure that most of the pain and inflammation had subsided. It felt great to return to an area I believe to be one of my happy places.
Now that the short version recap is out of the way, I want to speak on my reflections.
At the end of 2022, I hinted at the possibility of dating.
At the beginning of the year (2023), I signed up for a few websites/apps. I won't mention the apps by name in case any of you want to explore them for yourself.
I kept my profile relatively simple and put up different pictures of myself (some engaged in an activity, some dolled up, some full body shots, yes even some with no makeup). One of the main things I requested is (a) they not be smokers (because of my respiratory issues) and (b) that they have something to say other than one-line answers or acronyms. Other than that, I kept everything baseline, believing that through interaction, I would be able to determine whether the person was date-worthy.
In the beginning, I got lots of hits from different people. Perhaps dating was on their New Year's Resolution list ... who knows? In any event, I went through each one, carefully screening profiles. By the time I was done, the lot turned into a select few. I gave higher preference to those who actually sent a message or intro along with liking the picture.
I based my continuation of interaction based on these factors (in no particular order): (a) Variety of topics discussed (b) Consistency (c) How fast or reluctant the person was in advancing beyond the app (aka asking for a phone number to talk, asked out on a date) (d) Any yellow, orange, or red flags
Using those as measuring sticks, it became easier to determine which people I wanted to continue talking to and what people I wanted to cease communication with. I don't give out my phone number unless I am open to seeing where things go.
You must be wondering by now: How many dates did I end up going on?
Answer (by how I classify a date): One
I had one person ghost me the day we were supposed to meet but tried to gaslight me into not classifying it as such. Sorry, if one sets a date, time, and location, and that person doesn't show up or even reach out to me to alert me there's been a delay, that's ghosting. Then, when I tried to give him leeway and a second opportunity, his energy was different. He would never call me, despite knowing my schedule. When I finally let him know that his vibe had been strange leading up to the second date, he caught an attitude and said he was "giving me space", rather than being transparent enough to let me know that he really wasn't all that into me.
News flash: I know there are some guys that believe that the backing away method is kinder, but for me, it's more cruel. I prefer a person who is honest. Just give me respect instead of leading a person on. Also, I'm not going to give friendship as a consolation prize. I only offer friendship if I'm interested in a friendship with you. For the people I'm not developing a friendly rapport with, or if there's nothing left to build a friendship on, I have no issue with just never speaking to the person again.
There was another person that was nice. The drawback was that there was nothing but pre-dates and meet-ups. When there were conversations about an actual date, we could never get to a meeting of the minds. Also, his time was always filled with work. I don't have anything against a hard-working man, but in order to date, at the bare minimum, you need:
In my opinion, he didn't have those in alignment, and that isn't my responsibility. One carves the time for the activities they want to do and the people they want to engage with.
Here's a sum of the rest of the "mis" adventures (Note: "The person" represents different people.) :
(1) The person likes me but is dealing with complications.
(2) The person texts me but never wants to have phone conversations.
(3) The person texts me but never says anything of substance.
(4) The person wants to meet but doesn't advance with any particulars. (#IHateLastMinuteStuff)
(5) The person asks for the number, gets it, but never reaches out. However, the person keeps hitting me up on the app. That annoys me because if you have my number, use it.
(6) The person liking my profile only to give his opinion on my profile.
(7) People liking my profile, then sending me sexually explicit and derogatory messages (these people were reported).
Overall, it's been a wash.
For me, there are a slew of individuals that haven't done the healing on themselves and haven't rid themselves of their loose ends. In other words, these people have no business seeking long-term relationships at this juncture.
I confess to no longer being that person who is left on standby until another individual figures it out. I am not responsible for healing another person's baggage or being the cure for what ails them. My empath has been through enough of it; I'm not going through it again.
The dating space is too polluted with catfish, damaged people who refused to heal, people who want to experiment with other forms of sexuality without it being deemed cheating ... everything I'm not seeking and is not going to complement my life.
Yesterday, I put a pause on #AllThingsDating. I know, at least, for the remainder of 2023, dating is not in the forecast. I am going to reset and return to what gives me purpose, peace, and happiness.
Until next time,