I have opened my eyes for the first time in a long time.
If you guys remember the last two personal posts I have written, you may have noticed that I've been doing some reflecting when it comes to my past. I would say that this really started about three weeks ago, but moreso in the past two weeks. There have been some external reasons behind this, but mostly it is in regards to my sudden comeback in a social life. I have gone out and done things every weekend (and sometimes during the week) for a month now. That is a HUGE jump compared to the past 3 years (which was maybe getting out once a month). I have greatly missed being able to do this, and now that I'm getting back into it, I fear that it will go away.
I remember when I was 19 years old. I consider that one of the best years of my life. I was going to college, working at a gymnastics facility (and later a video store), and spending TONS of time with my friends. Other than my classes and work, I had no worries. I felt invincible, like I could do anything. I randomly dated guys (the only time in my life I really did that... I'm more of a relationship person). I was discovering the wild and spontaneous side of me. I participated in a wet t-shirt contest (didn't win, lol). I cruised down Noland Road for the hell of it. I even had one guy I dated just want to sit at home instead of getting out. What did I do? I made him go to a toy store with me.
Then I turned 20 and was pregnant a few months later. Yes, some of you read about the trials I went through in my marriage. But this isn't about that.
I love Truman. I wouldn't trade him for anything in the world. I take pride in being his mom. But just being a parent in general (and a single parent at that) is starting to be a personal struggle for me. Yes, I chose to have Truman even though he wasn't planned. I accepted the responsibilities of taking care of him, but I had the support of his father (yep that shot to shit really fast). What I didn't expect to happen was to feel like I have missed out on things, like certain rites of passage that one needs to go through before having kids.
I look at some of my closest friends and see how the ones that are married with kids handle parenthood and a social life. For the most part, they are all about the family structure, but when they get out for a night, the kids the last thing that's on their mind. Ok, I admit, that's how I prefer it too. If I am not around Truman, I want to have adult conversation and to be able to do adult things, like drinking, cursing, and dating.
Then there are my friends who have not yet been married. They have a different kind of independence that I do. They can just hop in the car and make a road trip if they have a free weekend. They can make more commitments to a plethora of activities. They don't necessarily have to worry about someone else's well being in order to have a night out.
Last year, I remember thinking that whenever I get back into the dating world, that I would need to filter out potential guys. Guys with similarities to my ex-husband... RUN AWAY FAST! Guys that ask for blowjobs before they know my name... Hell no! Guys that are parents themselves... good, even idealistic. But does idealistic usually happen in the dating world? No.
After almost 3 years, I have returned to dating. I feel awkward. It's not because of who, but because I haven't been out there in so long that I don't know what to do or what to say most of the time. Add in the fact that I have a kid, and that can potentially scare someone away. It's a newfound fear that I have. I want to be seen as the individual I am, not as someone who has baggage.
I know I am my own person, and I personally believe that I'm unique. I also know that I am a parent. I am both of those people. The recent weeks have definately opened my eyes, for what exciting things I hope to come in my future, and my fears that having a kid is going to hold me back from being with someone that is compatible with me.