As you may or may not know I met my man the secretive Mr. S (well only secretive because I call him Mr. S and not by his name) on an internet date site, here in Australia. Some sites are reputable, others are shams. Fortunately the one that we used was reputable. Yesterday we celebrated 5 years today of knowing each other and sharing our lives. I had written a post some time back about Internet dating on-line-dating-its-not-just-for-the-desperate but after celebrating our fifth year, I thought I would revisit.
This post however is more about how we met and how life can change if you step outside of the box in a not so conventional way to try and meet someone. When we first met on line, we emailed and chatted back and forth (on the computer) for many weeks every night, we then plucked up the courage for phone calls, again a few weeks, every night, we would talk for hours and I mean hours. We also reached a point with these phone calls where we did the “You hang up…no you hang up” scenario. Strange you may say for a woman who was 52 years of age.
I had only seen one photo of him, on the dating site, I only heard his voice, or read what he was like when we emailed or chatted on line. Trying to gauge a person without physically seeing them can be daunting, but I had to have faith in my intuition by his down to earth nature and humour, that if nothing else I had found a friend. When we decided to meet it was a strange feeling, number one as I had never gone out with a bald man before (or nearly bald I should say) and number two, what if he wasn’t who I thought he was? The doubts came into play and some uneasiness. I had arranged the ‘phone call’ (from daughter # 2) to phone about an hour into our meeting just to check that everything was going smoothly. In the end though I put faith in my gut instinct that all would be well. We met in a public lounge in a large Hotel Foyer, plenty of people, plenty of noise for distraction if required.
If anyone is contemplating meeting someone off the Internet, this is a priority, do not meet them at their home or in a venue that you would not feel safe in. Our first night was pleasant, yes several drinks were consumed to take off the inevitable edge. The conversation did not flow as easily as what I thought it would, considering the amount of time we had talked on the phone and unfortunately I (even though I thought I had) had not quite reached a place of completely getting fully over my ex, which came to the fore later in the evening. Yes I cried tears when Mr S tried to kiss me, I was ready (or thought I was) and though we did, my heart was not there, my thoughts were elsewhere. It was traumatic, how could I treat someone like this, this was not fair on him, so at the end of our evening we both decided that it was best that we remained just friends.
As we were both single and mature adults, neither of us were into the pub-pick-up scene, so movies, dinners etc and having company we thought was better than spending our lives alone,. We also decided that if we met anyone else along the way then so be it, we would part our ways but hopefully still have a friendship. As the weeks passed we saw each other every weekend. Before either of us realised, our friendship had grown into something more. Was it love? The age old question of what is love, how do you define it, what should it feel like, were raised (in my head at least). As a teenager I had many boyfriends, I wasn’t a ‘tart’ but back in my ‘youth’ I thought there was only one sure fire way of hanging onto the ‘boy’ of your dreams… I think you can understand what I am saying here.
When our hormones were racing madly, all we thought about was sex or hanging off the arm of the best looking boy in school, we did not know at that stage it was merely lust not love. I was capricious in my teenage years, I look back now at the ‘want’ of having or being with the ‘boy’ that all the other girls wanted. Did we love each other..we said we did back then, but truly we did not know the meaning of the word. There were the butterflies every time you saw him and equally as much, the ache in your heart when you didn’t. Back then we did not care what they would make of themselves in the future. We cared for the superficial, or sadly to say I did.
As I grew older, I was able to look at the person for who they were, their core, their values in life. We all would like wondrous love that is forever romantic, but realistically in many cases, the romance does fade a little but love still remains. Mr. S and I promised each other (when our light bulbs went on and we knew that we were no longer friends and we were in a serious relationship), that we would never fall into the ‘rut’ – you all know what I mean. The relationship where you don’t appreciate each other, where you don’t make love, where you take each other for granted. Have we maintained this promise? For the most part yes.
Do we appreciate each other after 5 years? Yes we do, Mr. S will put the dishwasher on, or hang up washing, or vacuum floors, or clean the house, without me asking. He knows that I work and that the weekends are for ‘us’ as much as possible. I in turn, will mow the lawns, put the garbage out, or help him when I can. Do we take each other for granted? No, we thank each other still for helping, we tell each other continually that we have appreciated an action or a compliment given.
We laugh, we dance like teenagers crazily around the house, we compliment, we kiss, we hold hands, we hug, we make love, (whenever both of us are awake long enough), but I know that this man that I met five years ago, whom I only thought would only be a friend and nothing more has turned out to be the man that I love and care for, more than any other relationship I have ever had.
Love can develop from friendship.
Yes love , especially as we get older means certain aspects of your relationship slows down or changes, love is knowing that, that person is there for you, is there to share your sorrow and your joys, someone whom you can depend on, talk to and are comfortable with. The butterflies still flutter, just not to the same degree as in your youth, this is something that happens to all of us. Nothing to be afraid of, nothing to be ashamed of.
There are many forms of love, many degrees. No matter how old you are communication and respect for one another must be maintained. Finally the ability to make one another laugh, remember to laugh together.
Mr S and I have not had a cross word or argument in 5 years. Proof that LOVE can grow from friendship.