Meet the Parents

Nope nope nope. I’m not meeting his dad, family are off limits, it’s much too early in the relationship to ask such things.

I got the, “But my dad is really great, you’ll love him.”

He got the, “This isn’t fair, you haven’t met my family yet, why do I have to meet yours?”

Yes, I am dramatic and immature and make a weak argument. Why he’s still with me, we’ll never know.

Long story short, he won and my pettiness was shown up.

He proudly introduced me to his dad, and I pathetically laughed at nothing funny and otherwise sat mute. Of the four times I spoke to him, two times I shouldn’t have opened my mouth. The first incident was worse than the second.

After boyfriend left to make us tea, it was just me and boyfriend’s dad. Boyfriend’s brother walked past and I said, “Hey, come sit with us.” His reply was, “I’m just going to put a shirt on.” I responded with, “No! You look great without a shirt, come sit.” All the while, boyfriend’s dad was watching.

The second, albeit not as bad, was finally building up the courage to make conversation with the dad by asking him if he enjoys living in the country that he has been living in for the last ten years. When he said yes, I replied with the most surprised, “Really?” He’s ever heard.

Now you’ll understand why I really didn’t want to meet the parents; not because I was worried that they wouldn’t be nice, but because I knew that I would be a complete disaster.

Good luck to his mom who gets to meet me next week.

Date Things

I’ll skip the farewells and welcomes that I alluded to in a previous post and hit you with the good stuff.

There was a date. There was a floor full of unwanted dresses. There was a friend throwing heels at me. There was a boy who was super on time.

There’s been some back and forth banter, shared instagram memes and group invitations to hangs with no real agenda. The “will you go on a date with me?” Was inevitable, how he actually asked… not so much.

In a far off land, full of work presentations and colleague roommates, he would find seconds of time to send me a message here and there. “When I get back from this work trip, we should totally hang and watch Friends.” My response encouraged him to take it one step further, “When I get back from this work trip, would you be keen for hangs and to watch Friends on Friday night?” Again he got a positive answer from me.

When he got back from his work trip, he gave me a call that went something like this, “Hey Jordy, I think watching Friends is a really bad idea, so we’re not going to do that.” Cue the crickets in the background of my unexpected call. Only, he continued, “so I’ll fetch you at 7, wear a dress, see you then, bye!”

Smooth operator.

Cue the floor full of unwanted dresses and friend throwing heels at me. In the end I went for a short black, long- sleeved dress and borrowed brown boots. I was still applying make up when he arrived at exactly 7:15, just like he said he would. Tough times. I scrambled for purse and lipstick and more perfume.

He finally saw my gate open, and his date walk out of her home, stress in her posture and deep breaths coming from her pursed lips.

He gave me a single white flower and opened the car door for me.

There was awkward small talk on the way there and general confusion as to where we were headed.

We stood in front of a classy restaurant, and he announced to me, “they serve seafood! You said seafood was your favourite right?”

He gingerly put the wine that he had brought on the table, and whispered that he didn’t really know how the whole corkage fee thing worked. The waiter had to explain it to him.

We spent the night munching on calamari in my case, steak in his and talking about family holidays and funny friendship stories. We spoke and ate and sipped coffee until the restaurant was empty and the waiters started locking up.

Unfortunately I needed to leave the province at four the next morning for the long weekend with my family, so my Cinderella story came to an end when he dropped me off right after dinner, ending the night rather abruptly.

My housemates sat waiting for me to return and enrapture them with stories of my romantical evening.

When my friend asked him a few days later how the food was at that particular restaurant, his reply was, “I don’t know, I remember nothing about the food.”

All the pre- date stress things

“It’s time to settle down, make a choice, pick a lane.” “Who’s Elaine?”

Crack.

I stare at shiny iPhone’s back as he lies face down on the ground. I’m whispering, “Please be okay, please be okay!” As my shaky hands reach down to pick him up. The screen flickers twice before giving up and ghost, and I hold my lifeless phone in my hands like I’m holding a flightless baby bird.

Goodbye photos, contacts, communication with the outside world, hopes and dreams. Goodbye details of the date I am going on in two hours time.

As if I wasn’t nervous enough already, I know have a dead phone and no way of contacting anyone. I send messages off of Facebook and hope that there’s a somebody out there who will reply. Luckily my mom is on the ball and sends me a game plan in terms of getting a new phone. Also Luckily upstairs housemate arrives home to a stress ball Jordy and she quickly hands me the phone before the tears can build up.

I tell date that I am phoneless and therefore he will have to make sure that he’s on time, I’m not waiting on the street for him to arrive. I’m finally calm enough to get changed, get make up, get ‘hair did.’ He has told me that I need sturdy shoes and casual clothes. I have no other instructions or hints as to where we’re headed.

He arrives on time, flowers in hand, and opens the door for me in true gentleman fashion. I’m awkward and a non- conversationalist in the car, completely out of my comfort zone and out of topic ideas on what to talk about. Why is it that you can have the most casual, easy conversations with a friend, but the moment you term your hang- out time as a date, your mind completely spazzes out?

He wants us to walk up a rock- clad koppie (little hill) and, backpack on back, he glides up that thing like a mountain goat, with unfit me panting behind him, tripping and hanging on to branches to steady myself.

At the top he unpacks fruit, Savannahs, chips and a blanket that he spreads out on the rock. Poor guy really had to carry the conversation while I tried to remind my lungs what oxygen felt like. We watched the sunset go down, and my nerves took over, not letting me eat much and making me look ungrateful towards his thoughtful spread.

Before it’s completely dark, we head back to the car and stop at an American- style old- fashioned restaurant. We order decadent, over- sized, over- embellished milkshakes. Delicious! And yet, I struggle to drink even half of it, my jumbled thoughts not helping a girl out with words that make sense to say to him.

Eventually the painful, stunted interaction comes to an end and he asks for the bill. I want to apologize to him for being the world’s worst conversationalist, but no meager  “sorry” could undo the damage that my evening- long silence has created.

When we get to the end of the longest drive in the world, I mumble something about it being super late, and try leaning over to give him an awkward goodbye hug, while being restrained by the seat belt. Important dating rule: always remember to unbuckle your seatbelt before saying your goodbyes.

Important dating rule number two: always always remember to unbuckle your seatbelt before getting out of the car.

All in all I made for a pretty bad date, and yet even despite this, I got asked out by the same guy a few weeks later.

My stupid 22 year old brain wanted some rebellious, ‘bad boy’ kind of guy, and so I turned down the second date. If only I could tell past me that I would later be hurt by such a guy.

Take it from me, you want the fun, adventurous guy, the gentleman guy, the good guy. But then that’s just my two cents

Some fantabulous sunset views

“Your Love Life’s DOA”

After church on Sunday night, my housemates and I love to have tea on the couches and rehash the week that has just gone by. This Sunday was no different… Well apart from the left over carrot cake from our Saturday tea party that we got to enjoy for a second day.

My Honorary housemate was extremely angry over the fact that an old flame of mine had chosen to sit in our row of seats, right next to her in church, with his new girlfriend. She ranted over his audacity, when there were hundreds of empty seats all over the building. Her outrage was entertaining and we joined in with her when we weren’t laughing at her.

As it often happens, male housemate (he’s home!) turned the tone of the talk into a life lesson, analyzing were I went wrong, who I had let into my life, and warning all of us to not make my mistakes. He wasn’t saying that I was the culprit in the failed attempt of a relationship, but even I know that I could have done some things better. The main problem area being that I was so worried about looking like your typical needy, clingy stereotype of a female that I didn’t speak up when I wanted to ask a question.

After dates and hangouts and kisses and hand holding and months of togetherness, I was still too scared to ask if “this was going anywhere.” I feared that asking such questions would lead him to see me as some pushy, desperate thing that I never wanted to be. So I let whatever kind of relationship we were in continue until it came to its inevitable death.

Male housemate used this as a lesson to his three single housemates, “If you don’t feel safe enough to ask the important questions at the right time, then should you be in that relationship?” Amen brother, I back you on that point.

Guys, if you’re happy to be up front about your intentions from the semi- beginning of the relationship, that would make our jobs so much easier. If not, however, then at least take our concerns and questions seriously and not turn us into some sort of whiny girl that we’re not. Girls, obviously don’t ask a guy when he intends to “make it official” on date one, but also don’t let him string you along for months. Ask the questions, get the lowdown on his thoughts. If you don’t like his thoughts, get out; and if you don’t feel like you would be taken seriously, ask the questions anyway. Either your perception of how he will take the questions is warped and you just need to get over yourself, or he doesn’t make you feel safe enough to ask. Of both these potential reasons, the action should still be the same, because you either end up in a relationship that actually has meaning, or you get out of a relationship that will hurt you even more in the future.

I know that this is a rant and a half of relationship advice from someone with less wisdom than her dog, but hey, if you don’t receive my thought process well, then are we really meant to be?

Married housemate said that next time, she would give me three months, and if my questions have not been answered by then, she would intervene. In the words of Barney Stinson, “Challenge accepted.”

The One with the Candy Hearts

Dear Breakers of Hearts,

Here’s one thing you should know before you set your eyes on another:

Girls’ hearts are unfortunately rather delicate. You message them and sometimes they see it as interest. You want to hangout, just the two of you, and she might begin looking forward to more one- on- one hangouts. You ask her to be your girlfriend and, shocker, she may get a little excited about future plans with you.

I know, she crazy, right?

Here’s a wild idea; instead of having to endure such madness, why not spend more time with the boys? Why not resist the urge to slide into a DM? Maybe group hangouts are a better idea?

If you’re going to be surprised every time a girl wraps her heart around near future plans, and even sometimes far future plans, with you maybe don’t lead a girl on, maybe just let her be happy in her lovely singleness, or at least wait until you’re not rookie enough, and are ready to messily wrap your heart around those future plans too.

Mending broken hearts is a little harder than mending torn jeans, I mean, have you tried sticking a needle into a heart? Just kidding, you’ve already done that, but without the thread or the intention of fixing anything.

Okay, I know that was harsh, but after watching another friend hurt over a guy who still wasn’t ready to even hint at making any plans more than, “what are we doing this weekend?” after dating her for years, I might be a little bitter. I said might be.

And calm down, I’m not saying give up on the dream of having someone to love, and love you back. I’m also not saying that you mustn’t date anyone until you’re certain you’ll marry her, we’ve got to be able to leave a relationship when we know it’s not right.

All I’m saying is that, maybe just come to terms with this crazy fact that girls can sometimes get a little more invested than you, that they think about things in advance – I mean, they think that you’re so great that they actually want to plan hanging out with you again and again- and they might put their hearts on the line a little faster than you might.

Fortunately for you, girls hearts are rather delicate, and extremely strong. They can hurt for other broken hearts, and they can fight for yours if you’re willing to fight for hers. Don’t stupidly make the same mistake again, she will have a posse of angry females willing to break more than your heart if you do.

Sincerely,

The girl who was more upset over her friends’ broken hearts, than her own