As I sit at home and wait…… trying not to be overwhelmed with inaccurate news and images…I still find myself moving in and out of panic. I am having an inner conflict not unlike many in the world wondering if I should A) be rushing out to the front lines to help or B)stay in place and practice social responsibility. Hmmmmmm even as I draw from my MSW toolkit, my days vacillate between exercise and productivity to this newfound routine of avoidance-eat, sleep, repeat.
If this wasn’t enough, I think I may be the only woman in America that is”Corona Dating”. Yup I said it….. I’m dating. I met this wonderful man on an empowering dating app called “bumble” three weeks ago. The first week he swept me off my feet (nothing like a Billy Joel” cover band to show a girl a good time). Could this be it? Is there still hope that there is someone out there that I want to spend time with????…….It was a wonderful week, we went together like peanut butter and jelly, both being ourselves and really having a good time- and then it hit me like a brick building, this Corona stuff isn’t gong away, it’s not a passing phase, I need to pay attention, I need to pull my head out of my infatuated ass and wake up!
Like any other normal woman who hasn’t been in the dating scene for years ( and I mean years) I know nothing about today’s “rules” or how things are supposed to go when you actually make it past the initial meeting and find someone you like. I immediately shut down-HARD and FAST! Petrified at what was going on in the world, with my friends and family and suffering from an innate sense of survival I called the ball- “sorry can’t see you anymore,” “practicing social distancing,” ” It’s been great but lets face it….. it’s been a week and if the chips come down to it we are both going to want to be with our families blah, blah , blah. I stopped answering phone calls, but he did not stop calling.
It was time to practice radical honesty something I’m extremely well versed at and probably one of the reasons I’m still single. We talked, well I talked- he listened. He said he understood and respected my decision and we would figure it out……..everything was going to be ok. WHO WAS THIS GUY???!!! Was he a psychotic, narcissist? Perhaps a lunatic? (Trust me I attract crazy). Alas, no, he is none of those things. He is a strong adaptable man who “likes me”. He is a man, as far as I can tell that also likes transparency and has resolved that he is going to continue to live!
I contemplated this while thinking of him on my yoga mat….my downward dog was NOT flowing and realized he represented the inner conflict I was experiencing in the flesh. I decided that I did not have to stop living either . I would however have to make some alterations to the way we continued to “see” each other. I wasn’t ready to let go of a possible relationship for if it survives this current adversity is the relationship I have been looking for my whole life…….one with a real partner.
So here is quick guide if there is anyone out there in the world who may need to navigate the beginning of a relationship in these uncertain times.
- Technology is our friend– use face time or zoom or the million other apps that allow you to see someones face, or other parts of the body. It goes a long way and reminds you that there is a real person out there that you are sharing “virtual” time with.
- Talk more not less – check in a few times a day either by phone or text just to let each other know you are thinking about the other because its extremely important to connect. Loneliness is a killer and there is no need to feel lonely especially when you are dating someone….
- If you have already been intimate.…..talk dirty, be playful, have phone sex….keep it light. Just because there is a pandemic out there doesn’t fast forward the relationship . It’s week three for us and even though we banter like an old married couple, that’s just our thing.
- Do you!!! Do what makes you comfortable – if bike riding 6 feet apart is acceptable do it….if it isn’t don’t . Do not feel pressured to do anything or be with anyone for fear of “losing” them or from fear of being alone in this uncomfortable time. Counseling and support of all types are available!!!!!
- Remember not to judge. Everyone deals with emotions differently. Grief, Anxiety, Fear, Passion, Pleasure, Pain etc. keep an open mind and an open heart.
- If it should end or be time to end it, just do it.