For the last few dates, I haven’t really felt much.
They’ve been standard. Even pleasant. I wondered if I had lost the ability to get that extra kick in my stomach.
Until today, anyway. Until Gareth.
We connected on Tinder, and I went to Clapham to meet him. At 6 ft 4, with a toned swimmer’s body, I was immediately struck by how handsome he was. Blonde, stubbled and striding, he was that sort of specimen of manhood you can’t help but be attracted to. The fact that the conversation flowed easily, that he was geeky and comfortable with himself, just made the magic happen. I felt that feeling, that wonderfully, inexplicable feeling as though you’ve just tasted the most warm, delicious chocolate. When you look at the other person and just think how beautiful they are. But not just in the shallow “they’re hot” sense, in the way that you can somehow see into them; that you hope that the beauty you see will be reflected back to you. That they’ll see you in the same way, and that your faith in their own beauty will be somehow justified.
After drinks, he had a peppermint tea and I had green, we went for a walk, popping into some sort of funny little nostalgia shop. It was full of those quirks and little household items which look like they’ve stepped out of some historical period or other. Which I suppose some of them have.
He invited me back to his house to watch a DVD, and I couldn’t help but accept. It didn’t feel right to leave then, it would have been too soon. I wanted to enjoy him just a little more.
In his house, after a little tour, he held me and kissed me. I could feel his warm body through his t-shirt, feel the rough, manly stubble as he kissed me. His arms went around me and he held me close. I refused to let myself be guided to the bed, despite feeling that both our bodies were eager and ready. On the sofa, we alternated between watching TV and kissing. All the while he held me. Sometimes I straddled him, feeling his hardness through our clothing as his hands moved over my buttocks, delighting in my body, which made me delight in him.
Too soon, I had to leave. I will admit I was proud for not sleeping with him, but on the other I hope he felt what I felt. I hope we can see each other again. I can’t help but feel there was the potential for something there, something wonderful.
I have resolved not to let my mind and heart run away with me again. I will be sensible and calm, not burn and feel, as I usually do in the all-too-rare instances that my heart stirs.
In meditation, we learn to be thankful for what we have in the present, not yearning over the things we think we should have in the future.
It made me think today of when I’ve seen relationships fail, so many times its because the person was justifying themselves through that very relationship, through another person. Their existence becomes all about their partner. I realised that, although it may sound romantic on the page, pinning your entire life and existence to another person is a road to destruction. It means you’re living on a house of cards, which will collapse at any seconds. All that can result from that is your own ruin and heartbreak.
So this time, I will simply let it be, whatever it may be.
But I sincerely hope it can be something. It just felt so right. It was as though Mr. Gareth was somehow the best parts of Mr. Will and Mr. Chris rolled into one. A handsome and interesting guy with a good job, gorgeous visage and his own dream little apartment in Clapham.
I do so hope something happens. Perhaps so much I barely will let myself admit it.
But even if it doesn’t, even if he’s not interested, and I must accept that he may not be – signals can be misread, or perhaps he just wanted some “fun” – at least he reminded me of one very important fact since Chris hurt me so: they’re out there. The nice guys are out there and waiting. The next romance is waiting. All we have to do is find them.
And even better, they’re on Tinder.