Since I’ve been back home in Colorado, I’ve been asked the question four times by four different people. The question I’m guessing pretty much all single women my age absolutely despise. It often makes them feel isolated, sometimes socially inadequate, perhaps even a failure at this point in their lives. Quite frankly, any version of this question just pretty much irks me.
“So do you have anybody special in your life?” “Are you dating anybody?” And probably the ugliest, most heebie jeebie inducing question of them all: “Are you married?”
In their defense, I haven’t seen or spoken with two of these four people in a year and a half and about four years; and one is a new coworker. As for the fourth person, she has asked me the question twice this year already. No hard feelings, grandma. I know you mean well.
No matter how the question’s asked, the same answer flashes in my mind’s eye like a bright red neon sign, a blaring, abrasive ‘EEEHHH EEEHHH’ sound rattling my ear drums like an obnoxious car alarm going off every time the light comes on. It’s not only ‘No.’ It’s a monstrous, resounding, ‘OH HEEEEEEELLLLL NO!’
This is what goes on in my internal monologue, at least. I’ve gotten pretty good at smiling politely and saying something like, “No, not for me!” or “Nope, nope, not right now” and laughing it off for a moment before I change the subject.
I just don’t have any time to dedicate to the dating scene. All summer long, I’ve been settling into the new job. As if that itself wasn’t busy enough, I was quickly reminded of just how time consuming and exhausting marathon training truly is. And then there was that little bump on my knee, uh, twice. Now add hours upon hours of icing and heating nearly daily while firmly planted on the couch in front of the TV to the equation.
Not to mention first finding, and now moving, into a new apartment. Then, there’s carving time from a few evenings a week to grace your starving eyes with my most exemplary and exquisite talents of the feathered pen and scroll kind. And last, but far, far from least, simply wanting to spend some good quality time with family and friends to make up for lost time.
Dating? To quote Sweet Brown, “Ain’t nobody got time for that!”
At the same time, I must confess. . . I am quite taken with someone. His reputation most definitely precedes him, a quality I find quite attractive. I think about him every day, several times a day. Can’t tear my eyes away whenever I see him. He’s literally made me weak in the knees. You might even call me obsessed.
Truth be told, we have a date. It’s on Sunday, August 18th. On that day, I will look up at him and dreamily gaze into his eyes, which may involve squinting because he’s quite tall – 14,115 feet tall, to be exact.
I look forward to dinner. . .carbing up the night - and even days – before the race. . .drinks. . .the orange Gatorade I’ll alternate with water each time I need to hydrate between aid stations. . .and let’s not forget dancing. I love to dance! Navigating the technical trail of the Ws, the Cirque, and the 16 Golden Stairs on my way to the top of Pikes Peak and back down to the finish line will require quite sophisticated footwork.
I can’t wait to see you on our date, m’love:
Melissa Mincic, Ph.D., a long-time road and trail runner, conducts applied child development research and works to influence child development policy at the University of Denver. Follow Melissa on Twitter at @nerdinrunshoes.