Saturday 30 November 2013

Dating 101 - Take a Deep Breath and Stay Calm

I'll let you in on a little secret about myself, I do not have nerves of steel.
Although I may look all calm, cool and collected at any given moment, I am a bundle of nerves in every new situation.  And because of this, I cannot be held responsible for anything that happens.

In my everyday life, I live by the mantra "act like you do, even though you don't". Confidence has a way of making people believe that you are a ROCK STAR!  It's not to say that I am a phony, by any stretch of the imagination.  I am as authentic as they come.
In the aftermath of my divorce, I was faced with the challenge of going back into the workforce. I had been on maternity leave when we split and the prospect of returning to teaching with two small children at home really didn't crank my chain.  Teaching is a noble profession but it also drains a lot out of you and I wanted to be there, physically and emotionally, for my own kids.  So, what did I do?  I changed careers.  Jumped right into the business world...with no business experience WHAT SO EVER.  Fear inhabited ever fibre of my being.  What did I know about business?  I had a liberal arts degree with a double major in Sociology and Languages. 

It was a HUGE curve and I was a nervous wreck every step of the way, especially when I had to stand up and give a presentation (people in the back row could see my hands shake!).  But I did it, with a constant fear of being "found out".  I played the part, learned my role and now am confident enough in my abilities to make me good at what I do. 
Too bad this didn't translate to the dating world.  
Yes, I know that with every new encounter there will be some level of "nervousness" but after being in the dating world for a while now, you would think that I would get a grip!

The proverbial butterflies take over and swarm my insides. My hands shake, my heart pounds, my sweet laugh turns into this creepy, maniacal chuckle. It is horrible!  Where does that confident woman go when in the company of a man???
I was asked out by Mr. Preppy Boy, another online dating prospect.  His suggestion was the driving range. Good, I thought, I can do this, taking a deep breath.  I was a pretty good golfer and I was thrilled that I would be able to showcase my skill in this sport.  We planned to meet one Sunday afternoon.

I sported my best golf outfit and brought out my new clubs, ready to show off.   I inhaled deeply, trying to calm the pounding of my heart. He was waiting for me inside the facility. As I made my way up the steps, making sure my walk was right and that I looked great, my right shoe caught half of the first step and down I went, clubs and all! RIGHT IN FRONT OF HIM!  

Great first impression. 

He hurried over to help me out and introduce himself formally.  I was so embarrassed and burst out into that maniacal laugh...could this get any worse?  

Well, yes.  Hold on.
The next hour was spent hitting balls and engaging in some interesting conversation.  That fall became a distant memory in our minds.  At the end of our time, Mr. Preppy Boy asked if I would like to grab a coffee.  Sure, why not?  I told him to lead the way, I would follow.
Sitting inside my car, I mentally patted myself on my back.  This was going well, even after the totally embarrassing start.  My nerves were still a bit wound up but I was sure I could handle the rest of the day without any major faux pas.
Driving out of parking lot, I followed him to the traffic light to get onto the main road. 
BANG!  My car jolted and it took me a few seconds to comprehend what happened.  
I HIT HIM!!  Yup, crashed my car into his back end.  I was mortified!
I didn't know what to do so I just sat there.  I could see Mr. Preppy run his hands through his hair before opening his door.  He walked over to my car, shaking his head with a crooked smile. 
Opening the window a smidge, I looked over and in my sweetest voice ever said, hi.
He was calm.  He was to the point.  "Maybe coffee isn't such a good idea."
At least he didn't ask me to pay for the damages...

First dates are challenging!  Tell me about a first date you had that ended up badly!


  1. OH MY GAWD. First, I think you're the bravest person I know, and I'm not just saying that! I'm such a chicken shit! Going out and finding a "real" job is one of my biggest fears....SO intimidating! The fact that you were scared but did it anyway is BALLSY! Wow.

    As for being adorkable, uh....if that guy couldn't see it, another one will! You'll find your mojo and won't be as nervous as you get more comfortable with dating again. Hopefully you won't get in too many car accidents with potential boyfriends anymore though! haha!

    seriously, Audrey, I think you're a superhero.

    1. Superhero? WOW! I like that!

      Fear propels me forward (sometimes too quickly, hence the car crash!) I never found it debilitating like many others. It makes all the little hair on the back of my neck stand on end and makes me get up and do things!

      I think you are cut from the same cloth Beth...ballsy, superheros with mojo!!
      <3 <3 <3
      ps. just thought of a great superhero name for me...Awesome Aud.... LOL!