Ok. Time to tackle a toughie subject. Dating.
As I've been losing weight and getting my life in order, I've been thinking more and more about finding the right person to share life with.
Truthfully, at 300 pounds I didn't respect myself enough to think I deserved a man in my life. I shut the door on every positive possibility that presented itself. Of course, there weren't too many positive possibilities because I wasn't happy with myself and therefore wasn't attracting good quality men.
I remember thinking though that I didn't necessarily deserve quality. The things that I truly wanted in a partner were put by the wayside when someone did show interest just because ... well ... I thought some interest was better than none and therefore why turn it away? I didn't date a lot but when I did, I settled.
These days, that sure has changed.
I'm not stopping traffic by any means, but I am getting noticed more. Doors are opened more often, I get more looks by passersby, occasionally someone will honk, and smiles in grocery stores come more easily.
I don't think this has to do with weight though. I mean, sure, guys are very visual so perhaps that plays into it somewhat. I think though that the self-confidence and self-worth that I'm building are playing a key role in my getting noticed. I feel better about who I am as a person. I know I've got some great qualities that others will appreciate and therefore I walk straighter, look people in the eye and (shockingly) might even offer a smile first!
Let me reflect back for a second.
At 300 pounds, I looked at the ground a lot when I was walking somewhere. I didn't meet people's gazes because I wanted to blend into the environment. I judged myself so harshly that I didn't want to open myself up to their judgment too even though most of them might not have been offering judgment. I didn't necessarily feel fat. I just felt worthless. Hence why I was fat! What an endless cycle! I was unapproachable, harsh, and self-demeaning.
Wow. Not a very easy combination to be around for anyone let alone a partner.
I might not have vocalized those things all the time to others, but it's how I felt inside and I know it worked it's way into my interactions.
As I've been going through my weight loss journey, I've been working hard to change my thinking. I've religiously been visiting with Glenda once a week to work on my personal stumbling blocks and with each little pound that falls off, a little bit of my emotional insecurity falls away too.
Anyway, I say all of this and am reflecting on it because (drum roll please) ... I have a date tonight.
It's such a different thing for me this time around that I'm still taking it all in. I'm excited about having a date, but I'm also not thinking I need to sacrifice who I am in order to make someone else happy. I'm looking at him and thinking, is he right for me? And not, am I right for him?
What a shift in thinking. Looking at dating in this light really takes a lot of the pressure off. I don't feel like I have to perform or change myself to fit his world. No, this time, he needs to fit into mine.
To clarify though, he doesn't need to change, he just needs to "fit". Make sense? It's a big and important distinction.
I'm excited about the evening ahead. I'll feel confident when I meet up with him (while wearing my size 10 jeans no less!). I know what I want in a relationship and I'll be sizing him up to see if he'll fit the bill.
And if not, hey, no worries. There will be someone out there that will. This time around, there is no need to settle.
It's time to get out, have some fun, and see what there is to see in this great big world! This is a new chapter in my life and instead of standing scared in the corner, I'm rushing out to meet it with a smile on my face.