Sometimes over the last couple of years I've sailed through the weeks and months and everything has fallen into place, I've gone to bed, slept really well and I've genuinely felt like life was mine for the taking, other times though, I get a knot in my stomach, I have the overwhelming feeling that I might be alone for the rest of my life and my whole body feels anxious.
I'm 42 and a lot of my life was spent being married, being the other half, being a whole together and I'd like to hope that one day someone is going to come along who's going to love me, to embrace me, to actually appreciate me for all of my guts, determination, my courage, my strength, my slight eccentricity but the thought of actually having to be in that place where you start again, where you have to talk to the opposite sex and be mildly interesting and make small talk just absolutely terrifies my big girl pants off me!
I've mentioned this before, dating has changed from what it was when I was 24, it's app based, it's Tinder, it's Match, it's swiping, it's photos of men with their shirts off and sometimes with puppies, yes really, I've supported my girlfriends through their internet dating adventures and it's just plain scary, one of my friends was approached by a man who would have made a serial killer look like a catch. I wonder, have people actually married people they've met on Tinder?
I perhaps should see it as an exciting adventure, after all I'm someone who loves people, who loves spending time with friends, I love to do things and go places, I like exploration and adventure, I love holidays and day trips alike, I like being spontaneous and I am prone to impetuous travel, i'm not really one for home making, I'd prefer to be out there creating memories and having nourishing experiences, I don't want to read the book, I just want to do it!!
When I go out to dinner with couples who's weddings I'm shooting I usually ask them how they met, I like to find out their story, I like them to tell me about the engagement because I love that stuff, I am truly a die hard romantic who has read and watched too much Shakespeare, Austin and Bronte, it's the reason I fell in love with Moulin Rouge the first time I watched it, no matter how many times I watch that movie I cry, it's about infinite love, love that lives forever...
I have found through my chats that a lot of people meet at work, on work nights out etc and so obviously I'm at a bit of a disadvantage with that one, or they meet in the pub, yeah, another thing I don't really do and sometimes, just sometimes they've met online, that's the terrifying bit I've already mentioned and something which I'm not really sure I'm cut out for. If online dating is anything like the telephone dating of the 90's it's all completely fake, mostly people have one thing on their mind and it's not a game of dominos in a snug somewhere on a Sunday afternoon. I think some people are lucky, perhaps though they were predestined to meet. I do believe in soulmates after all, what I consciously need to ask myself now is, do I believe there are multiple soulmates out there for us all?
I should say that at this point, where I am right now, I am not ready, I need time and more time and then probably a little more time after that but watching friends in similar situations has made me question about the way the world of dating has changed in the last 20 years, heck the whole world entire has changed in the last 20 years, can you imagine a world without reality television? I came from that world, it was a simpler time I can tell you, of course I also came from a time where every children's TV heroes have now turned out to be somewhat more sinister!
One thing is for sure though, I hope if I am ever ready again it happens in a completely organic untinderless (yes I just made that word up) way, you know when your eyes meet across a crowded room...does that still happen?