Archive for the 'Friends' Category

30
Dec
10

Holiday Shmoliday

Sigh. The most dreaded holiday for all singleton’s is upon us. New Year’s.

I’ve never been a big fan of New Year’s even when I wasn’t single. It’s ALWAYS way too much hype and expectation; so much time thinking about what plans should be, where to go, what to do. I bring it on myself I guess, since I go through the same struggle year after year: do I do the annual house party at B&C’s with my bestest friends, yet all the same couples that we see year after year? Or, try something different and more my age with my VERY limited selection of single friends (2 to be exact).

I was feeling a little bit of guilt this year because I have skipped B&C’s party the last two years – not to mention the fact that there’s part of me that, of course, wants to spend NYE with my group of best friends. But, for whatever reason – my anxiety level goes sky high when I go to that party. This year will probably be 10 times better because X won’t be there, but at the same time, being there with 8-10 other couples is not a great way for an emotionally-messed up single person to start off the New Year. Already, my anxiety has been building about it all week….

I briefly explained to B&C (with few details) about why I find NYE at their place so hard – it’s not only because of the number of couples there, but also because every NYE, I wonder what events will transpire over the next year. And every year for as long as I can remember, there’s always that glimmer of hope that next NYE – I won’t be at the party alone. And that glimmer of hope has NEVER materialized. So every time I go there and relive the same party, with the same people, year after year – I don’t feel like much like celebrating because it feels like nothing has, or ever will change. And then I just become a downer and don’t have a good time. At least when I do something new and/or different (especially with some young, single people), I can forget about it for awhile and it doesn’t feel so much like New Year’s….it’s more of a fresh start. Maybe this is more my rambling than making sense, but it’s the only way I can explain it.

Another contributing factor to my anxiety right now, is that I’m feeling really anxious about the New Year – I think it will be one of the most challenging years for me. I have taken on an additional job teaching, which terrifies me to my very core. I question my decision to do it every day not only because it’s new, but because of the workload. I will have a new boss starting in March – someone whose working style I don’t respect and someone who I’m not a huge fan of personally. I’m going in with an open mind, but it will be a challenge. And, my roommate of three years is graduating and leaving me this year. Despite the minor annoyances, she’s been a great roommate and I’m struggling with whether or not to go it on my own financially, or risk having another roommate who ends up being a nightmare. Additionally, another couple in our friend group is having a baby. I worry about what this event will do in terms of changing my friendships with the people who are closest to me. The dynamics in our group will change dramatically, now that half the couples have children and I fear that I’ll only start to feel older than I already do.

Lastly, my little brother is getting married. It’s probably one of the most emotional challenges I’ll face this year. Not only because it’s difficult to be the older, single sister, but because it denotes a significant life change for both of us; where there’s now a fork in the road and he’s starting down a completely different path than me. A grown-up one 🙂 Adjusting to the way our relationship will change and getting used to the idea of him having a ‘separate’ life apart from our family, is a tough thought to grasp. Luckily, I am gaining a remarkable sister-in-law who has become an awesome addition to our family – I couldn’t have asked for someone more perfect for my brother and I am convinced there’s not another soul in this world who could make him any happier. Nonetheless, getting my head around this idea will be a tough, emotional challenge this year…..

Wow – writing that all out has upped my anxiety level about New Year’s 10 fold! LOL.

On a happier note (since this seems to have become kind of a ‘downer’ post), I went back and re-read my resolutions from last year. Surprisingly, I’m happy to report that I did very well with almost all of them. Some are goals that I have to keep working at – but the most critical ones (healing my issues with X, increasing my gym time, and making more of my own decisions) – I would argue I’ve been pretty successful at.

Not quite sure yet what my resolutions are for this year. But I can tell you that after writing out all the challenges I’m getting ready to face, getting through this year emotionally unscathed is probably at the top of my list!

12
Dec
10

acting our age

I’m starting to feel old.

I’m only 28 (29 in March). To me, this is NOT old. In fact, I would consider myself to be a “young professional.” But things are happening around me that are really starting to make me feel like I’m living in a time warp; one that’s warping me forward…

I’ve said before on this blog that I’m surrounded by an unusual group of friends; unusual in the sense that all three couples around me have been together since their high school/early university days. So, it’s NOT unusual that they have gotten married and are now in the stage of parenthood (one couple with a baby, and one couple with one on the way). As you can imagine, the transition from having friends, to having friends who are parents, has been an interesting one. B&C have done really well with the adjustment, and it seems our social life as remained some semblance of normalcy since Mr.C (as we affectionately call him) was born. But now that L&J are pregnant (side note: they just turned 26 and 27) and Mr.C is getting a bit older, things are starting to change.

I don’t remember the last time we all went out and had drinks. Actually, I don’t remember that last time we all went out AT ALL! Our Saturday nights typically consist of us gathering at somebody’s house, maybe watching a hockey game and playing some board games. And B&C’s annual NYE party will be the same this year as it has been for the last seven years – a get together at their place with the same people (99% of whom are couples). I haven’t gone for the last 2 years, partly because X has been there and partly because it just got too emotionally difficult to be the only single person there. And don’t get me wrong, I’m all for not spending a fortune on NYE, which to me – is really just another day. But at the same time, wouldn’t it be nice for us to switch it up? Spend a little money one night, get dressed up and celebrate like we’re actually IN our 20s and not in our 40s???  This leaves me torn between wanting to do something more our age – like a hip party at a swanky hotel (my option this year), and wanting to spend NYE with my favourite friends. The problem is, I will never get to do both.

And it’s not just New Year’s. I had a Christmas party this weekend – I have thrown it every year for the last five, and it’s always a late-night/early morning good time. This year? Half of my guests were gone by 11:30pm. B&C had to go home with Mr C. and L&J (the pregnant couple) were tired as well, so….

I understand that this is what life is like when you have a baby, so I can’t blame them. But all it made me think about was how this is the direction that our lives are headed, and I’m not sure where that’s going to leave me in a couple of years. I feel soooooo far away from parenthood, and am feeling really sad thinking about how I’m going to fit in once the babies continue to come. Already, ALL conversations turn to baby or pregnancy. And THAT makes me feel old. And as much as I could take that in stride when it was about everybody else’s wedding, the baby talk is much, much harder to take because it’s a constant reminder that my friends are moving farther and farther away from the life I’m living. No one talks about dating, or what they did last Saturday night, a cute guy they met, or a cool party or new restaurant they tried.  I worry about how I will maintain these close friendships when I’m starting to feel such a large invisible age gap and our interests and lives are starting to go in different directions.

I mean, we have SO MUCH TIME for house parties and early nights. Should I be feeling old at age 28?? Am I the only one who thinks that 26 is young to be having babies?? Am I crazy for wishing that sometimes, we would act our age?

22
Oct
09

Friend.

My best friend is getting married on Saturday. And I can’t wait.

Despite the fact that I have had somewhat of an emotionally tough time making it through weddings this year, this one gives me no trepidation or anxiety whatsoever. I am beyond excited to celebrate this day with them, and even more excited that I get to be a part of it as C’s Maid of Honour. She has picked a great guy – and I’m so lucky that A. has become such a good friend to me as well. It’s great that I get to cap off my bridal party duties (this is number six) with two of my favourite people.

I really struggled trying to write my speech because C. has been such an amazing friend to me, and I wasn’t sure I could find the words to tell her just how much her support means to me. I hope that I have. There are a few surprises up my sleeve as well 🙂

C. is going to be the most beautiful bride ever – AND – she has the classiest taste, so I know that everything is going to look fantastic. She had a bit of bad luck today, and I am praying that things will work themselves out by Saturday. She deserves to have this day be perfect.

I love you C. and I can’t wait for Saturday!

05
Sep
09

Summer at last!

SummerSunflower1Today was a great day. It’s the 5th of September and summer has FINALLY arrived in the city. It has been a long string of cold, dreary, wet weather – unusual for Ontario this time of year.

It’s amazing how much the weather can change our mood. The sun was shining when I woke up this morning. And instead of having a long, lazy sleep in like I usually do on the weekends, I forced myself to get up at a reasonable hour (9:00ish – VERY early for me on a weekend!) I got caught up online, enjoyed a cup of tea, some Eggo waffles and headed out around 10:30 am to get a haircut. The downtown was buzzing – people were out and about, and in a good mood. After getting my haircut, I ran to the mall to run some errands, and pick up some stuff for C’s Bachelorette party this weekend! Where I would have otherwise just been getting out of bed at about 12:00pm, I had already done a full morning of stuff and still had the whole day ahead! I spent a really nice relaxing afternoon at my parents’ place, catching up and lazing in the hammock with a good book while the sun worked on my skin. Afterwards, I headed over to C&A’s place and had a beer with A. on the balcony, before we went to pick up C. from work. Then, the three of us headed to a patio downtown for some dinner and drinks. Now, I’m waiting for my cousin M. to come over for some wine, girl talk and a movie…

It’s been a long time since I’ve been in this good of a mood, and X. is this far from my mind. I am SO excited that it finally feels like summer. Tomorrow, the plan is to head to the beach with a group of friends – throw around the frizbee and have a little Bocce tournament. It will be the first time all summer that I will have put on my bathing suit! And on Monday (holiday in Canada – yay!!) I’ll be catching up with my friend/co-worker J., who’s been away for two weeks (during my whole emotional crises!) She and I have a ton of catching up to do.

Sorry if this blog has read like an itinerary of my weekend, but the sun is shining, I’m in a great mood, and I had to share 🙂

31
Aug
09

Moving on…

DSCN0182So I promised to update on my weekend and the anxiety that accompanied last week…

The bottom line of all of it is that I found out that X has a new GF. How did I find out? Yep – completely fell of the wagon (after hearing that he had been in a car accident) and emailed to see how he was doing and what was new. He told me he had “kind of, just started seeing someone.” Now – to my complete and pleasant surprise, this actually didn’t bother me as much as I had anticipated it would. Maybe because it was new, and didn’t sound all that serious. Maybe because I feel like I’ve finally gotten to a point where I can recognize that my issues with X aren’t so much with him, the person, but with what he represented in my life. But, the second I found out that X was bringing her to C’s surprise birthday party (that I was co-hosting with B), I completely freaked out. It’s one thing to be OK with an X moving on, but it’s another thing to have to deal with seeing them together, being around them, sharing mutual friends. It’s something I didn’t have to worry about with X and his x-girlfriend, because she lived out of town and we never had to really hang out together. Plus, B&C didn’t really like her so there was never really any instances where we all had to hang out. But for some reason, this one hit me particularly hard. I think part of it was because it made me realize that his relationship with her is probably more serious than I initially thought, and that it’s unlikely he’s dating widely inappropriate people anymore – I mean – this could be the girl he ends up with! Why do I care about that? I don’t know.

As ridiculous as it sounds, part of me just thinks that it’s completely unfair that X has had two relationships since our break-up, and I am in the same spot that I was when we broke up five years ago. I know it’s not a competition, and it’s not that I see it like that – but at the same time, I just don’t understand why he has been lucky enough to meet people that he can have a relationship with, and I am still lonely, alone and waiting. I just didn’t want to have that reminder shoved in my face on Saturday night, while I already had to deal with the fact that I was the only single person at the party.

Unfortunately for me, I’ve always been the kind of person whose emotions completely overrun her body. All week, I was nauseous and sleep-deprived, just dreading having to deal with Saturday. And when the day finally came, I had a full blown panic attack at the party, just before X and his gf arrived (only the second time in my life that has ever happened). I was ready to just walk out the door, and honestly didn’t think I was going to be able to get it together. The entire night, I didn’t eat one morsel of food, and I didn’t drink anything but water – I felt physically ill the entire night. I don’t know why I couldn’t get a grip. I don’t know why X having a GF bothers me so much. I don’t know why I can’t let him go. I don’t know why I can’t listen to the advice of those around me and just cut him off once and for all. I don’t know why I still insist on hanging on to something that brings me nothing but misery and sadness. I don’t know why I can’t see X for the jerk that he is (and he is). I don’t know why I feel this inexplicable, incessant need to carry on a relationship with someone who doesn’t respect me, and doesn’t really seem to care about me either.

The one good thing that came out of the party was this: my brother (who attended as well), got into the car on our way home and said to me (having had a few drinks): “Man – X is really an a**.” If you knew my brother, you’d know that he is someone who never has a bad word to say about anyone. He likes everyone, and everyone likes him. Even when people are at less than their best, he can always see the positive and had always been the one trying to help me see things from X’s point of view. But to hear him say that he thinks X is a jerk (actually – his choice of words were a little more explicit!) made me feel completely justified in finally starting to see X for the jerk he is. I had always defended X as being a nice, caring guy who has had some asshole moments. But really, he’s a  jerk more often than he is a nice guy. And his actions towards me over the last year or two have been less than kind – in fact – they’ve been downright rude and cruel. Who wants someone like that in their life, no matter how much they may have meant to you at one point? Seeing X move on is certainly not easy, and I’m going to have to keep my distance from him (even if it means keeping some distance from B&C too). But it just means I’m going to reassess the relationships in my life and decide which ones are the most important – which ones are good for me and which ones aren’t.

And while I’m on that note, there was another good thing that came out of the party. I realized that I have the absolute, bestest best friend in the entire world. Honestly, C. (not to be confused with C. of B&C) was the only reason I got through the night. Not only was she never further then steps from my side all night, but she did everything she could to make sure that I was OK, and not in the eye-line of X and his GF. When I freaked out and panicked, she just stayed with me and asked what I needed her to do. And even when there was nothing she could do but just be there, she was. I don’t know what I’d do without her. Having people like her in my life make me realize the kinds of friends that I want to surround myself with. And they don’t include X.

I suspect this won’t be the last you hear on this story…

08
Aug
09

Girls Night

So, the problem with trying to write a blog about my single life is that when there’s not much going on – there’s not much to write about! And while I wouldn’t really call it a ‘dry’ spell that I’m going through, I would say that I’m definitely trying to take a step back from focusing on my dating life so much, and just concentrate on myself (that sounds like such a cliche but – I think I need it). So – although I will certainly continue to write about my thoughts on being single (I still have many – they may just be fewer and far between), you may find that my posts might be more about random things going on in my life that I want to share.

For example…

Tonight I had a really fun girl’s night out. It wasn’t anything extravagant – I didn’t get super dressed up, and we didn’t have a crazy night on the town. But me and my best friend C. got together with another acquaintance of ours, who we actually met through B & C., and it was so nice spending some time with a new friend! S. has been a good friend of B&C for quite some time, and I have always enjoyed spending time with both her and her fiancee when we’ve all hung out. They’re both just really great, lovely people. S and C’s fiances work together, and were getting together for boy’s night. So – C. and I invited S. along for our own girl’s night out. We had a great dinner with lots of good conversation, and then went to see the movie “Julie/Julia.” FANTASTIC! Meryl Streep is exceptional in this movie and it’s the perfect movie to see with your girlfriends. In addition, the company was particularly nice tonight. I spend a lot of time hanging out with couples (friends whom I love) – but tonight reminded me of how much I also love just spending time with the girls; something every Single Girl needs to do on a regular basis. It also reminded me of how nice it can be when you discover the potential for new friendships. I’m still learning (in more recent months) that friendships can be unpredictable and are subject to change. However, with those changes comes the potential for letting new people into your life, and who knows what could come of that?! Anyway, I plan to make an effort to a) have more girls nights out, and b) spend more time getting to know S. and her fiancee.

While I’m making plans, let’s also say that I’m going to make an effort to blog more regularly! If I eliminate the need to simply write about my single life, maybe I’ll surprise myself by getting distracted from it all together – and wouldn’t that be nice! Call it a step in my “X Rehab Plan” (We’ll see though…my singleness does tend to be the thought that occupies my mind the most).

Stay tuned…

P.S. I have just finished the book The Time Traveler’s Wife. I was determined to finish reading it before the movie comes out in a few weeks. AMAZING!! If you’re looking for a good, romantic read, check this one out. But – hang in there for the first 100 pages – it gets much better/easier to follow! You can check out a few more of my book recommendations here.

15
Jun
09

the single girl’s best friend

Diamonds may be a girl’s best friend, but the Single Girl’s best friend? Gay men.

Let me preface the following by saying that this post is based solely on my experiences with my own gay friends (G&W) and their friends, so I’m not saying that everyone’s experiences are the same. But, I was hanging out with G&W and their friends the other night, and it dawned on me just how good I feel about myself when I’m around them. They are fun, inclusive, accepting, kind, open and honest. Sometimes I don’t realize that I’m not being myself the rest of the time I’m not with them, until I AM around them and realize that I feel like I can be 100% myself.

Why is that?

Well, hanging out with my gay friends is really the best of both worlds. Not only do I feel loved and appreciated by them (which I don’t really seem to get from other men outside of family), but there’s also no pretense for having to impress, or watch what I say, or get nervous about how I am coming off – I’m not really self-conscious about anything. And I know that there’s not going to be an awkward situation where one of us likes the other one more than someone else, or I have to worry about whether or not “he likes me” – because – he doesn’t! I also think it’s because the gay population has endured centuries (and is still enduring, to this day) the need to shed off judgment, deal with discrimination and do their own thing despite what everyone else thinks.  So for that reason, they are comfortable being 100% themselves and it is contagious for everyone else around them to be 100% themselves too.

Even when we women hang out with other women – there always seems to be a subtle, underlying sense of competition or self-consciousness – especially when you’re talking to the pretty-put-together ones and you feel completely inadequate. My gay friends give me the comfort and approval I’m looking for from a man, and yet I don’t have to deal with the drama that comes along with being around other women, or the insecurities that come from trying to ‘impress’ straight men.

Believe it or not, it was one of my gay acquaintances who actually made me feel more desirable than any other man ever has before, when he said to me once: “If I wasn’t gay, I’d be all over you like a fat kid to chocolate.” (Ok – so it’s less than romantic, but it made me feel good nonetheless.)

So, if you don’t have any good gay friends, I encourage you to go out and befriend some. Based on my own experience, it seems that having to constantly deal with discrimination and judgement makes this group particularly sympathetic and accepting to those who feel different or insecure. G & W are two of my best friends in the entire world, and I hope you are lucky enough to find those men in your life (gay OR straight) who make you feel as appreciated as they do for me.




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