I guess I should start by explaining how and why "A Dater's Life" was born. Though now that I'm sitting here thinking about it, I don't even know if I can explain.
It was the summer of 2006, the summer before my 35th birthday, and I received a "Save the Date" e-mail from my years-younger friend MM, telling me that she was finally getting married. On my 35th birthday. It was the quintessential Sex and the City
moment, but I didn't find myself laughing. Sure, I could make jokes to people about the absurdity of going to a wedding alone (well, with a gay man) on my 35th birthday when I hadn't been in a real relationship for over two years, hadn't even really dated anyone in that time period. I could search for the perfect outfit, drink copious amounts of champagne, treat myself to my favorite foods and then dance like a madwoman until 3 a.m. But on the inside, if I'm being honest, it was painful. Over the months that followed, I came to the realization that I had simply given up on dating. Dating was exhausting and frustrating and confusing and stressful, and I found myself totally clueless as to how to approach meeting men, now that I had grown up and stopped picking up random strangers at bars (which was how the vast majority of my dating life had gone). I found myself sitting at home alone more nights than I was going out, and while I found myself enjoying the quiet, the solitude, I couldn't help but feel it was a resignation to a state of being single and not true acceptance.
Like I said, I had given up.
Now, perhaps I am destined to be single forever. Let's be clear: I don't view being single as a failed life; there are countless things that I have accomplished -- that I will continue accomplishing -- as a single woman, and I am proud of the life that I have lived thus far. And if my future is to remain single, that is something I can learn to embrace. However, to quit trying is not the way I want to go. Quitting would be the real evidence of failure, and that is something I cannot accept in myself.
So I find myself, eight days after my 35th birthday, ready to challenge myself to go out there again, to find new ways to take risks for the possibility of love, to not just give up because a dater's life is difficult but to keep going because through that same difficulty the life of a dater can also be beautiful.
Thus the birth of "A Dater's Life."