Girding My Loins

8 02 2011

As soon as I started to contemplate the idea of dating again the phrase “gird your loins” popped into my head.  All of the sudden it was just there.  Historically, the phrase refers to tying up loose clothing and strapping on armor to protect the area below the bottom of the ribs and between the hips.  The fact that I was now about to go forth on the battlefield of dating to meet 100 men with their man swords drawn made the notion of girding my loins extraordinarily apropos.

The truth is a full month and a half passed from the time my therapist suggested that I start dating to the time I started to make any initial moves to find a date.  I mulled the idea around in my head for quite a while.  I ran the idea past my friends.  Although I was still hesitant, most of them seemed supportive of the idea.  Like my therapist, I think they were worried that I was becoming too comfortable staying in, watching television with my dog every weekend.

My son gave me a Snuggie™ for Christmas, and my friends threatened an intervention.

But, dating after divorce is no small feat.  Divorce is change afterall, and how many people really enjoy change?  Especially change that we didn’t want?  There’s a certain comfort and predictability in marriage, even a bad marriage, that is not found in dating.  The idea of learning about someone else’s favorite things, pet peeves, and idiosyncracies seemed daunting.  I truly felt as though I was preparing for battle.

I knew my dog loved me.  Maybe that was enough.  He had even started sleeping on the bed after my husband left.  Any man who wanted a relationship with me now would have to get past the dog.

As part of my re-launch into singledom, one of my friends hosted an un-bachelorette party for me.  Approximately twenty of my closest girlfriends and gayfriends gathered for food and libations to celebrate my transition.  Bridget Quigg came and performed “Almost Female: A Jockette’s Awesome Journey,” and I broke down crying during the last song.   There were lavender martinis, a donkey piñata with my husband’s face taped to the ass, and a tube of meat-like  substance with a heavy mallet.  The object was to get me good and liquored up, inspire me to go forth in the world, and provide me with ample opportunity to beat the shit out of anything remotely reminding me of my husband.  It was both ceremonial and cathartic.

I recommend the un-bachelorette party as one of the best things a girlfriend can do for a friend going through a major transition such as mine.

By this point, Thanksgiving and Christmas had passed, and along came New Year’s Eve when you’re supposed to kiss someone at midnight.  Again, there was my dog and my girlfriends.  I made New Year’s Eve dinner for my friends and we toasted the new year, vowing that 2011 would be much better than 2010.  One of my friends stayed up, talking with me well past midnight about her dating experiences and where she was meeting people.  Although there were a lot of toads to kiss, she too encouraged me to get back out there.

That was the conversation that finally did it.  I decided I would  gird my loins and go forth on the battlefield of dating. I would find ways to meet new people.

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2 responses

8 02 2011
JJeffries

Watching from the front row. Subscribed.

9 02 2011
Leta Goldberg

This is one of the funniest commentaries on dating I’ve read!!! You should be writing a book seriously. I’d buy it in a hearbeat. Your writing style is smooth, honest and articulate. Thank you for sharing.

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