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One afternoon Kristin was telling me about this video because she knew it would make me mad. This is what friends do sometimes (at least female ones) and it’s not because we’re actually trying to piss each other off, it’s just because we know what each other care about and sometimes it comes out, “Ohhhhhh man I saw this thing that would drive you crazy!”
Of course I wanted to see the video after she mentioned it and of course she was right– my eye rolling began as soon as this “popular YouTube star and mother of two” started talking.
After it was over and I was just as annoyed as Kristin promised I’d be my thoughts went like this”
Don’t do it, Katie. Don’t take the bait. Click the ‘I don’t want to see this’ link in your mind.
At first it worked, I misplaced it in my mind and forgot all about it, but then it was everywhere. A million and two links on Facebook, blog posts, videos, and articles all defending mom-hood against the unenlightened minds of the childless who have (apparently) collectively decided that all of our now parent friends have entered the age of douch-i-ness.
And they’re all getting it wrong.
Put down your pitch forks and fire sticks, ladies. We don’t believe motherhood has made you an asshole anymore than being single and childless makes us idiots!
We know kids change everything and they suck up your time and energy, there’s really no need to explain or offer excuses for that, we get it. There may be a few of us who’ve never had a lot of experience with kids and maybe that few doesn’t know all of the details, but being logical human beings we all can reason that giving birth to and raising a child is not easy.
Maybe you could consider for one moment that just because we share our time with different things than you do now, doesn’t mean that we don’t share our time and that we’re obviously completely self-consumed. We still have worries and responsibilities and single person incomes. And yeah, WE KNOW that those things aren’t the same as having a child, but please don’t do us the injustice of acting like they are less important than motherhood because that really does make you look like an ass. The grass is always greener, right? We could compare notes all day.
Perhaps instead of feeling pressured by our text messages, emails, and invitations out, you might see them instead as us offering an olive branch– a way for us to remind you that you aren’t forgotten, you’re still important to us. Because for all of those same reasons your baby makes it hard for you to go out with us that you mentioned, it also makes it hard for us to go out with you and your baby. We aren’t trying to be demanding of your precious time, we just don’t want you to think that we have abandoned you since our lives have started going in different directions. It’s ok for you to take your time getting back to us and to decline invitations when you need to. We get it.
But really, here’s the thing: All that time you’re spending making YouTube videos or writing exhaustive lists of excuses for why we’re too much trouble for you in the midst of all of your heavy mom-responsibilities that you believe us to be totally clueless of, you could be sending us a three word text message that says the only thing we really want to hear from our friend whom we miss.
Motherhood, becoming a wife, work schedules, social events, being single– none of it is a good excuse to be a bad friend, and that’s the bottom line.
“I’m a phoenix in the water
A fish that’s learnt to fly
And I’ve always been a daughter
But feathers are meant for the sky
So I’m wishing, wishing further
For the excitement to arrive
It’s just I’d rather be causing the chaos
Than laying at the sharp end of this knife”
There are things I have to carry now and some days that’s easier than others. Today’s one of the harder days and it feels like all of the things that used comfort me feel far away. I’m lucky because these hard days are far out number by the good days.
What I need now is a good book, a long sleep, and some quiet dreams.
Speaking of dreams, I had a really weird one last night that involved being married to a prince, which, alone, sounds like something I would really enjoy. I didn’t, though. He was kind of a mean prince, and apparently I had been forced to marry him. Ick. Crossing fingers for better dreams tonight.
I’ve been away for a couple of days being with family and working on a new project.
I have vaguely alluded (at least I feel it has been vague) to having some fairly significant changes take place in my life recently, and while I’m not going to use this post to un-vague them (yes, I just made that word up) I am going to redirect your attention to what I’m doing with myself in the wake of those changes.
I’m single… … I know you probably needed a few beats to recover from the shock, but anyway, yes, single. Without having to dig up a lot of stuff I’d rather not shovel right now, I’ll just say that I don’t want to be single anymore. I’ve reached a place where I want to think about life, as in the rest of mine, with someone else, hopefully for the rest of theirs, and kids, and yards and the things that go with marriage.
In an effort to make the most of my free time, which I have very little of these days, I have made the horrifyingly brave decision to try dating websites. If you know me at all you will understand how extremely difficult even typing those words are for me. However, I’ve decided that dating websites don’t have to be the official stamp of desperation, and that for a person like myself who is working/volunteering/involved in church and ministry/and has good relationships with close friends and family they should and can be a valuable tool for meeting new people with similar goals and interests.
In order for this process not to be completely mortifying, I’ve decided to turn it into an on-going writing project about all of my dating experiences. This new endeavor will include, but certainly not be limited to what I find on the dating websites. I will cover dating mishaps and high points from the past and hope that they are fun, funny, and keep bitterness at bay.
That said, this is my official launch post for Dating Katie Brown. I hope you’ll all stop by, I’m only two posts in, but I have an ever growing pile of material that will go up with a quickness. Enjoy and let me know what you think.
This evening I found myself with some extra free time after nannying late and before a coffee date with a friend. I was hungry and very tired (still getting used to this low, low, caffeine in-take thing), so I decided to do something I don’t get to do very often anymore– take myself to dinner.
There’s this small local restaurant that I like for it’s casual quietness and the best burger I have ever tasted. Period. If you know much about me or my relationship to food (mostly estranged or awkward, but I’m working on it) you know that if I am going out of my way to eat it, it has to be a pretty damned good burger. Typically I’ll look for reasons not to eat a burger.
I walk into the restaurant and am greeted by two young hostesses, I’m guessing that they’re eighteen or nineteenish. They both look at me expectantly, waiting to hear how many people are in my party and I have to disappoint them with the news that it will only be me. I learned a long time ago to expect a certain amount of weirdness at this moment, but these two girls acted as though they weren’t sure what to do with me. One of them looked around the not nearly full dining room as though she wasn’t sure where to sit a single diner, even though there were small tables set for two aplenty. Obvious choice, young lady, come on.
I’m seated (at one of the two-seater tables) and wait a few minutes before a waitress comes over. My menu is closed because this is a restaurant I’m familiar with and I came in knowing what I wanted to order. The waitress looks a little distressed when she asks to take my drink order and I’m thinking maybe she’s just had a rough table. I order water and then she notes my closed menu and asks, sounding even more concerned, “You already know what you want?” I nod my affirmation and give her my order and she hurries off, assuring me that she will be right back. I was really grateful for the attention, but she said it as though she was afraid to leave me alone for to long for fear she might come back to find me trying to drown myself in my water glass in despair over having dinner alone.
At this point I start to notice the eyes of every single waitress in the place. I also notice that I am the sole single diner in the entire place. No big deal, but apparently the staff things something horrible has gone wrong with my evening to leave me on my own for a meal. I’m kind of amusing myself with the idea of waitresses imagining that I had been stood up when my waitress brings my food. She hands me my burger with a look that I feel is meant to be sympathetic but is only coming across as pitying and she asks, “can I bring you mustard?” in a tone that implies that her desire to provide companionship is so great that she’ll do it with a condiment if she has to. I pass on the mustard and she walks away shaking her head. Clearly I have lost all hope.
I enjoy my food, I read my news feeds in peace and quiet and without rushing. I am able to ignore the staring that is unabashedly taking place and I am managing not to be annoyed by the over-attentiveness and what seems like the overwhelming urge to refill my water glass of my waitress. Then the restaurant owner comes by, I know he’s the owner because most of the occasions I’ve been in his restaurant with my Dad the two of them have stopped to speak to one another. He approaches my table with a look of alarm and I’m preparing to hear that there may have been a finger in my burger or something when he asks me how my meal is, while furrowing his brow like he’s looking at a puzzle he just can’t quite figure out.
Having finished my food and paid, I was over it and ready to get to Starbucks, a land in which it is PERFECTLY FINE to be alone… in fact, in some ways I feel like the single customer is rewarded for their independence by being left alone, by being given quiet to work, write, read, or whatever singular activity you might like. In the land of Starbucks the single coffee-sippers are in the majority and they are also the ones looking on with some frustration of parties of more than three who are probably being noisier than is appropriate for a library, which is the ideal noise level for a Starbucks save for the occasional sound of a blender or coffee grinder.
I’m not scared to eat alone. Clearly. I just remember now why I don’t do it very often. Do men go through this when they dine alone? I don’t want to believe that this is just a girl problem, but I almost feel as if the perception is way worse when it’s a woman eating alone than if it’s a man, and I bet, just considering that there are a few more female waitstaff than there are male, that single male diners probably get hit on more often than female ones do.
Anyway, I appreciate Starbucks for it’s single-diner friendliness.
Day 4 in Dallas went pretty smoothly! I got my first taste of traffic and it didn’t suck that bad, but I do worry that yesterday was nothing compared to what it will be today. 😦
Also, after the panic, anxiety, and nervousness finally passed about being in a new store, I finally looked up and realized that up a floor and across from me is a Lush store. This is where, in a movie, you would hear that little “ahhh” of angels singing, signifying a golden moment, a parting of the clouds and a holy grail being illuminated. OK so Lush isn’t -that- fantastic, but let me tell you, I was thrilled!
I went over right after work, just to look around and see all the things I’ve never gotten to see or experience in person. It was awesome. It’s such a bright, soapy, change from my black and white store! The ladies there were exceptionally nice, they weren’t pushy, they just told me about products and let me ask questions and choose what i wanted.
I ended up getting the Head, Shoulders, Knees, and Toes deal… its 9 products for $25! At some point later, once I’ve used the stuff, I’ll probably write in more detail about the products I took home, but this morning I’m just waking up and trying to counter act a nose and throat that are determined to convince me that I’ve caught a cold, and random facts and excitedness are all I have patience for at this point.
So far I haven’t done any major socializing in Dallas, I haven’t even been to church yet, and I wont get to go this weekend either because I work during all of the services of the one church I know how to get to. Right now I’m just kind of exhausted. All of my energy has gone into trying to make my apartment feel homey, and coping with new work people, new clients, new everything. At the end of the day I want to sit on my ridiculously comfortable bed, make myself dinner, and read until I can’t hold my eyes open anymore and then sleep.
Next week I’ll have days off that don’t have to be centered on moving or unpacking and I can get some real rest and then after that… well then after that we’ll see what we see. It’s not that I don’t want to make friends, it’s not that I don’t want to be social, it’s just that there are some specific things that I don’t want to do. For instance, I am completely over going out. When I entertain the thought of social activities these days, I picture things that take place during the day time, things that are intellectually and spiritually stimulating, things that don’t involve stumbling drunk or being hit on by random people who are stumbling drunk. Which brings me to another point….
I am over dating… which is honestly old news because I’ve been over dating for about a year and a half now. Oddly, at least I considered it odd, upon moving to Dallas I received an uncanny amount of relationship advice. It was as if the whole point of moving at this point in my life, nearly 29 and single, was to enter a new dating pool in which I might have more success. *sigh*
I’m not going to go all I Kissed Dating Goodbye on you were, but something I’ve learned in the last 10 (it kind of hurts to realize that 10 years ago I was 19) years of my life is that dating doesn’t work. Also, that’s the last thing in the world I need right now. Right now I need friends, both male and female. I wish that somehow I could instill in the words I type the sincerity I feel when I use that word friend. Never in my life have I needed real friends the way I need them right now. I need friendship that will make downtime in Dallas less empty and more normal. I need people to hang out with, to talk to, see movies and live music with, without there being any pressure for anything else. I can’t stress that point enough.
So no, I don’t want to go out, I don’t want to date, and I do want to take naps and read books and laugh at ridiculous things on tv because I think my sense of humor might be strange. Maybe.
As this post has now lost all of it’s flow, I think I’ll finish my waffles and go get ready for work. This entire weekend we have to wear pink wigs. Prepare yourself for pictures.