A couple of weeks ago I was sitting with my date at a fondue restaurant. Typically I only eat dinner at this place for birthdays or other bigger moments. After our delicious Wisconsin beer cheddar fondue, salad, and beyond tasty meat course it was time for chocolate. (Can you tell I LOVED this meal?!)
As the woman was heating up our chocolate she asks us “Are you celebrating something special?”
“It is the big 10!” I answer a big smile.
“Whoa 10 years!”
“Nope our 10th date!” Excited jazz hands again and a pat on my date’s back. “I’m hoping we make it to our 11th!”
My date laughs out loud and the waitress just shakes her head with a smile. Yes readers… I am dating a new guy and I’ll call him Kevin*. He wants to be called “The Great Bearded Wonder” and while I agree he does have a great beard, Kevin is much easier to write.
So when I first matched with Kevin he was one of many. I would love to say I knew that I’d like him from first swipe but it was on Bumble and people don’t put a lot of information on their profile. Heck even mine was a one liner from The Office. So the extent of the swipe was “Hot first picture” and that was it.
For those of you outside the dating app world, Bumble requires the woman to send the first message. I actually love this because I can unmatch if I’m not interested before he messages me. It was Christmas day when we matched. I sent him and my other matches a Christmasy message the next day and put my phone down. He replied shortly after and we started talking.
After only a few days of chatting. We agreed to meet and he was going to plan the first date. He gave me two options… One was go to an early dinner OR we could watch the Ohio State game together at a sports bar.
I really do love to watch sports and beer/wings but I’m not a big college sports fan. Also, I know how I can get watching a game (please only talk to me during the commercials) so I opted for the early dinner.
We joked about how we were like old people when we planned to eat at like 5. So when it came for us to pick the place he suggested a family restaurant that is known for an elderly crowd. To match our time. I loved it! Cute, creative and got jokes.
It took me a long time to get ready for the date. I was planning to go ALL OUT with the elderly look. I put on a floral dress, gray leggings, thick white sweater socks, and a gray cardigan. I stared at myself in the mirror and kept thinking…
1. Do I have the balls to wear this?
2. Is it that funny in a first date?
3. Would he get the joke or just think I’m a weirdo?
I wish I could say I went along with it. But about 5 minutes before I left I went with a grandma type cardigan (that I wear all the time 😀) and a floral scarf. An ode to granny without going over board. I had the balls but liked this guy and didn’t want to scare him off. Now knowing Kevin… He would have gotten the joke and enjoyed it. On the date he even said “you can wear that look next time!”
We chatted for a couple of hours, drinking beers and eating. I am not sure the beer selections and food choices matched the patrons (a lot of old people). I think this restaurant may be realizing a lot of their clientele is dying off and they need to attract a longer lasting group.
The date felt very natural and comfortable. Once I met him I didn’t feel nervous and that I could chat about anything. I very rarely meet a stranger but getting back out there had been a little bit of a struggle so it was nice. There was no pressure, just conversation. Our date ended in a nice big hug and plans to go out a couple days from then.
On our second date we went to a WuTang night at a local bar and an improv show. I realized he laughed at the same things I did at the show. This was a great sign! As he was driving me home he suggested we stop at a hole in the wall bar in my town. This bar had made headlines during the summer for a double stabbing. So needless to say I was not a regular. He thought it would be fun and I thought why not?!
We walked in and clearly we were not regulars. I was wearing a tshirt my sister bought me for Christmas that said “Kinda Hood Kinda Classy.” It did not match the motorcycle ambience of this particular location. But we walked in and I smiled and waved at everyone. Kevin and I are pretty friendly and non threatening. So I got a few half smiles and head nods back.
That was until Kevin gave me a couple dollars for the jukebox. He said “pick songs you would like, don’t worry about the place.”
I chose Rake It Up by Yo Gotti. It had been my jam for a while now.
I am not going to say it was a crowd pleaser but we didn’t get yelled at or kicked out. This continued even after we spent 20 more dollars building the soundtrack for the night. Trap music, country music and some old school WuTang to match the early part of the night.
There was one point when someone said “Who picked this shit?” For the record Kevin picked that particular song, although I told the nice young bar lady it was me. I was already in the inner crowd with the head nod group. I didn’t want any drama. I believe the song was Method Man.
The highlight of the night when I gave him a high five while we were talking at the bar. Kevin inner laced our fingers for about a minute. Seriously, I felt a small shock through my arm. Up until that moment I knew he was really good looking and super nice but I wasn’t sure if this was going to turn into a romantic vibe. The kisses at the end of the night sealed that decision. 💋
We’ve had many dates since those. What I really like about Kevin is that he always makes time for me. Our dates sometimes consist of a quick dinner or desserts / drinks. Meeting for lunch in the middle of a hectic day to eat chicken sandwiches and drink lemonade. Making dinner and a movie night. Yet some are a fondue night at a nice restaurant or karaoke at a bar! I never know what we will do together but I don’t worry that we won’t see eachother.
I just feel relaxed and myself when I am with him. When he first came to my house I didn’t even think about the fact that my dishes weren’t done and my dogs were extra crazy. I just felt at home. I credit some of that to Kevin but most to myself and the work I’ve done the last few months.
I’ve realized that my job in life is to try to be the best version of me. To try what I’m afraid of and to seek gratitude and joy. The person meant for me will encourage me and I them. If I do my best then I’ll get out of life what and who I’m meant to. No need to put pressure on it.
Kevin and I are taking things slowly. We are exclusive but no titles. We are both not ready. A year ago I’d be asking and curious when it will happen. But for now I still have work to do on me and my moving on. I’ve got to fully move on from my past relationship before I can be fully committed to a relationship. This is getting much easier but I’m not quite there yet and still have tough moments. For now, I’m just enjoying this adventure and the guy I’m sharing it with 😘