Sunday, July 18, 2010

Last-Minute Man

This weekend set up an interesting internal question: Can the woman that is dating everyone, have certain expectations for anyone?

Back Story: Today is Sunday.
Lewis and I made plans to hang out for the first time ever. We have chilled together numerous times, now. We just haven't ever made plans to hang out. It's always been a last minute thing. In part, because I like spontaneity. It's one of my themes for this summer. And, in part, because I think it's just the way Lewis rolls. I like it. I like the seat of the pants, no plans way we have handled things. It's worked. But, earlier this week, we made plans for Friday night.

In our usual spontaneous way, we ended up hanging out on Thursday night. It started with a few afternoon drinks at a friends' place. All the other guests left and our mutual friend went to sleep. I was crashing on her couch, so I asked Lewis to hang out for a bit. By the time we were done making out on our friend's couch and at her front door, it was pretty late. I assumed this late night would some how affect our Friday night plans. No big deal. I enjoyed the time we had spent and I would just play it by ear.

Friday evening, Lewis calls and asks if we can reschedule our Friday date to Sunday. I say it's no problem, because it's truly no problem. He didn't leave till around 2 the night before. He's worked all day and I am sure he has work to do tonight. No big deal.

Saturday, Lewis and I talk and turns out he went out on Friday night after all. Enter salt. I hear it in my own voice. "Oh." This is the part where I question myself. Why did this information make me raise an eyebrow? I really hadn't cared that we didn't hang out. I actually spent the night snuggled up with Lynn watching La Vie en Rose. It had been a truly great night. Plus, I needed the rest. Then I realized, it was because I was setting up for a cancellation on Sunday. I was making assumptions... Enter my old shit. I was setting this guy up for failure of sorts. Part of me was sure that he was going to cancel the plans for Sunday or just never mention that he had called it a "reschedule." I spent Saturday giving him the business. I was already in a mood anyway. I would have found something to bust his balls about. I was quite sure of it.

Back to my question -- Can the woman that is dating everyone, have certain expectations for anyone?
Lewis and I have discussed the fact that neither of us want a relationship. He has been very open and understanding. He is a pretty great guy. I think we both see the freedom of this thing we are doing: not a relationship, not just a friendship. But, do we know the limitations? I am discovering the limitations and setting boundaries for myself and my attitude as I go. Here's what I have so far.

*I can bust his balls every once in a while -- its good for him.
*I cannot take frustrations out on him. I don't do this with my friends. This is an old habit of my past life. I do this in romantic relationships. It stops here. He's offering me free goodness and you don't look a gift-horse in the mouth.
*Lewis can cancel. We are not in a relationship. This dude is mad attentive. We talk all the time and we enjoy each other. If he chooses to cancel and do anything else he wants, it's his life and it's his business. We'll catch up later.
*I have to decide what it is I want and I have to keep this goal in mind with each individual guy. If a guy leaves me sitting at a bar alone waiting for him, he's probably out. If he frequently cancels plans, that's called a phase out. He is simply phasing himself out of my dating life. Less work for me. But one or two cancellations from a guy that is proving to be more of the spontaneous kind, not an issue.

These are just a few of the boundaries I will lay out for myself. Some will be universal and some will be created to deal with each type of guy I date. It is Sunday afternoon and I have not heard anything about tonight's 'plans'. Lewis has earned the title of "Last-Minute Man." I will treat him as such. I might not always shave my legs in prep for our 'plans', but he's still a favorite of the summer. Hands down; time with him makes me a happier person. Having lofty, unrealistic expectations will make for a lot of unhappy and that's not even a sub-theme of this phase of my life.

Boundaries. Overstepping them is both tempting and ill-advised.

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About Me

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I am the product-child of the Women's Lib movement. I have a grade A education, a promising career and no immediate goal for children or a spouse. I will be 30 this year and I have spent many years in monogamous relationships. In and out of 1 to 2 year relationships, I always dated with the goal of meeting someone special. Most of the time I didn't date. Most of the time I found myself falling into relationship after relationship. These relationships were doomed to fail. They were all built on expectations that were, for me, unattainable. I love meeting new people. I find sex enjoyable and empowering and I am not happy when I am monogamous. So, after my last break-up, after taking some time to grieve, I decided to cut my societal puppet strings and get back in the game. I set out on a mission to spend the Summer of 2010 dating as many men as possible. My only initial criteria was attraction. My only limitation was - no love and no structured relationships. This is my date by date tale of what life can be like outside of the goals of relationships and love.