Girl with ruby slippers finds herself in unfamiliar territory. Looking for a man with courage, brains and heart to take the first tentative steps on this new journey.
These are the opening lines of the first online dating profile I ever posted. It was eight months after my seventeen-year marriage ended, and I was still shell-shocked and wounded. A couple of months before going online, I’d written in my journal, “Who will ever find me beautiful again? Who will love this face, this body, this woman on the other side of beautiful?” I didn’t really believe that I would love or be loved again in my life.
Turns out I was wrong. Enter Andrew, a research scientist who could write circles around me, who read all the books I’d been meaning to read, but hadn’t gotten around to, and who could make me laugh out loud. He also had a lovely English accent and wrote me love letters with a fountain pen; I couldn’t have conjured anyone more perfect. From our earliest emails and phone calls, I was hooked.
Andrew lived one ferry ride and another two hour drive from me (which at the time seemed a safe distance away). Before we even met, we both understood that it could never work out for us. Neither of us was in a position to move. But for some reason, we decided to meet any way. Our entire relationship consisted of a handful of delicious summer weekends. I remember the two of us, tumbled together in clean white sheets, slow dancing to Stan Getz, watching the sun set with a bottle of wine on a local beach. This, I would think to myself, is what divorce looks like ten months on. It’s not a bad gig.
Our relationship was as brief as the summer, but it was such a gift in my life: it was an affirmation that I was still desirable and sexy, a lesson in the value of loving recklessly, and a reminder that I would love deeply again. Andrew showed me that my heart still worked, something I had questioned after my divorce.
I thought about Andrew today after reading “Every Woman Has the Love Life She Wants” at Fingers Crossed. When I returned to my profile after Andrew and I broke up, I realized that I got exactly what I had asked for. I had asked for a man to accompany me on the first tentative steps of my new journey. Andrew was the perfect companion.