Remember in the last post how I mentioned that a few of my own flaws flared up and reared their ugly heads like angry stallions during the Georgia date? Yeah, I was hoping I’d forget too, but I didn’t. Let’s discuss!
My Flaws, 1: Communication
Visible even with strangers, my ability to communicate unfavorable information is not good. I know Yossi had his feather ruffled about the stipulations of our date. like complete spontaneity is off limits. Other stipulations that a few guys, Yossi included, have been irked about is time and location (like not going home with anyone). It hasn’t gone over well to explain this all to a lot of guys, so yes, I shy away from it. Understandably, my dates are annoyed by this. Not just because I’m not going to be sexing them up (I kid, I kid) but because this project is a little different than normal first dating circumstances based on the fact that I leave town, which makes people more apt to want to hang out longer. Their “one chance to make an impression” (words from dates themselves, not mine).*
My Flaws, 2: Overpromising
I hate letting people down. I can’t let clients/friends/strangers down in my real life without feeling like I’ve reached into my own spine, pulled it out of alignment, twisted it a hundred and eighty degrees, and shoved it back in place. Yes, that’s what it feels like. No, it’s not healthy. This goes double for dating. I told Yossi to call me if he felt better once I knew he was going to need some time alone with his stomach, and I knew Megs needed to detox and not be on a date with me. Was I expecting Yossi to feel better less than thirty minutes later, while Megan and I were not even sitting down to see Perks of Being a Wallflower?*** Nope. I told him I’d try to hang out with him later, not sure how this was all going to play out or if I’d be able to really meet him.
Later came, I realized I simply didn’t have time to reconnect with Yossi. I suppose I could have not taken care of what Megan needed and not listened to her when she said clearly “I really want X to make me feel better” (golly, not X the drug, X as a placeholder!) and potentially ruined our trust and friendship for the rest of the trip. Or I could let down Yossi.
My Flaws, 3: A Return to the Infamous Kristin and Eric Conversation
Back at our hotel on the outskirts of Savannah, and I took a phone call from Yossi, who was not pleased. At all. And he was right – I had tried to promise too much, couldn’t deliver, and he was annoyed. Not to mention, it sounded like he’d had some bad luck with people flaking on him recently, and I felt like the needle that broke his haystack’s back (that’s how the saying goes, right?). So I listened, empathized, and felt more and more like a horrible human being. I was busy being sweet instead of strong because that’s what I thought Yossi needed, because I was worried that he couldn’t handle it if I said, “Look, I understand you’re disappointed but this is hard on me too and I really need you to take this all in stride right now because this is how it is and it’s a lot harder on me when you act this way.” I apologized, apologized again, and listened some more. Why didn’t I just trust him to be an adult? He hadn’t given me a reason not to.
Am I destined to be my flaws? It’s hard to confront these same flaws again and again on this trip, seeing them front and center, and forty-plus dates in I’m not like, hey I’ve got a handle on this! And there’s part of me that does not want to change at all…because if I am my flaws, at least I’m me. And I kinda like myself, flaws and all.
Being different is hard.
Whee! Being a mature adult is funnnnnnn!
* I would never go to a first date’s home in my regular life, and thus I don’t do this during Fifty/Fifty. In fact, it’s unlikely I would make definite plans to stick around with a first date for more than a couple hours so as to uphold with my “low-stakes, low-pressure” dating environment (as much for me as for them).**
**Unless I was prepared for them to be expecting some sort of sexual healing.
***Nowhere near as good as the book; to be fair, if you don’t have the book half memorized (I’ve read it a lot) you probably would really enjoy the flick.