A few of my more seasoned co-workers are single. The unattached ones (and some of the married ones) are interested in how I met my late-in-life beau.
I get it.
Meeting a significant other can be challenging. Add in the baggage carried by the average 50-something, and finding love can seem impossible. Stir in a global pandemic heading into its third year and you might as well give up and get thee to a nunnery.
Flo, a bubbly purple-haired grandma/cashier, shared that she’s dipped her toe into the pool of online dating. She’d gone so far as to exchange a few messages with a prospective suitor.
“I had a good feeling about him,” she began. “Then he said if this was going any further, I’d have to send him a picture of my feet.”
“Your feet?” I asked.
She nodded. “I’d just finished work, and they were swollen with sock marks on my ankles. It just didn’t seem like a good idea.”
If it doesn’t seem like a good idea, it usually isn’t.
Yes, you read that correctly. A small company called Wooland (Wool&) came up with an intriguing marketing idea. They challenged their customers to wear one of their merino blend dresses for 100 days straight.
What’s the catch, you ask? There isn’t one.
Once the challenge is completed and 100 photos documenting your dress journey are submitted to Wool&, they send successful participants a coupon code to order another one of their merino dresses.
I’m doing my challenge in their Maggie dress. It’s a short sleeved scoop neck in a fine woolen knit, so it lends itself to a variety of looks. Since it’s been super cold this last little while, I was relieved to discover that my dress is a layering champ. I’ve been wearing shirts under it and sweaters over it all along.
Since it’s often layered and not next to my skin, I don’t need to wash it every day. It’s machine washable and dries nicely overnight when it does need to be freshened up. My Maggie gets bonus points because dog hair doesn’t stick to it.
I’m on day 35, and I’m not going to lie–I’m looking forward to day 101, and a return to the rest of my neglected wardrobe. But I’ve got my eye on the prize, so I’m not ready to give up.
I lost Penny, my beloved Chihuahua, over a year ago. She and I were together fifteen years. Of all the dogs I’ve loved, she was the special-est. She’ll be the one waiting for me when it’s my turn to cross over the rainbow ridge into eternity.
Although Penny is irreplaceable, a house without a dog is not a home. I have another puppy–a feisty American Eskimo named Murphy.
I retired from teaching in June, and moved to a beach-side resort on the other side of the island.
Although I was done with teaching, I wasn’t ready to do nothing. Now I work at a grocery store–a seasonal Christmas job that became permanent. I quite enjoy being a cashier, but I’m not very fast, so I spend most of my shifts packing groceries for the real talent at Club Pricey Freeze. (I’m not allowed to mention my employer on social media, so that’s a made up name.)
And, perhaps best of all, I have a new man. He’s kind and generous and handsome. I feel safe and cared for when I’m with him. More about him (much more!) in later posts.
What hasn’t changed? I still think about things too much and waste endless amounts of energy second guessing every decision I make.
Although it’s not officially spring, it feels like winter is finally over.
I’ve spent the long, dark months with my nose to grindstone trying to keep up with the nineteen wonderful five year-olds in my class. I’ve crawled home every evening, exhausted. No energy to do anything more strenuous than watch a little Netflix, drink a little wine and snuggle the little dog.
I finally feel (somewhat) on top of things. (Sunshine recharges my batteries, and I’ve been basking in the soothing rays for the past few weeks.)
Me: You know how we sometimes hear mysterious sounds coming from the back of the car?
My Boy: No.
Me: Sure you do…like last night when I was parking…
My Boy: That wasn’t a mysterious sound. You backed into something.
I don’t know where he gets it from (probably my dad), but my Boy can be quite logical–almost Spock-like–whereas I tend toward the whimsical (shades of my Welsh mom’s fey?)
***Check out the photo of the three of us at my Boy’s Christening. My dad’s wearing a cardigan under his suit! I love cardigans so much! I wear them almost constantly through the cold seasons. Noticing that my dad wore a cardigan to this special event felt like a connection through the years. File this under the Power of Fashion to Enrich our Lives.
It’s a pity, really. If we went into it with our eyes open, aware that we’d likely be untying the knot in a decade or two, it might not be such a jarring shock.
As I navigate this process (and believe me, it is a process!), I’ve learned a few things:
Getting married is way easier than getting divorced. It’s more fun, too, and the clothing options are better. No one loves a fancy dress more than me, but I’ve yet to find an occasion to wear a divorce gown.
Divorce lawyers cost as much as a buffet dinner for your nearest and dearest at the local Lions Club. You’ll spend all your money on this special “life event,” but there is no wine and no one brings you presents.
Dogs are not just man’s best friend. They are woman’s, too. (Forget everything Marilyn Monroe ever told you about diamonds!) Unlike your lying bastard soon-to-be ex-husband, your dog will never let you down. Treat her well.