Taking My Life Back

I recently had a situation where I had to make a choice.

I had been renting a car from my old landlord. The car has been having trouble ever since I first got it.

The low tire light has been coming on every 2 months. The first time it happened, the landlord said to take it to a mechanic and have them put air in the tires.

When I did that, about a week later, the mechanic said that I need all new tires. He showed me some cracks that were in the tires and some bald areas on the tires. He also showed me what a tire is supposed to look like. From that time on, I was nervous to drive the car.

When I told my old landlord, he said the mechanic was just saying that because I was a woman and he wanted to make a sale. My instinct was telling me to trust the mechanic but I needed a vehicle at the time. He was giving me a good deal on the rental car. I wouldn’t be able to find a rental car for the price that I was paying. So against my better judgment, I kept driving the car.

Every two months, I would just text the landlord and he would come out and put air in the tires and check the car. I was too nervous to the drive the car when I went whale watching so I would rent a car from Turo. That was even more money that I was spending.

The proverbial straw that broke the camel’s back happened in November.

I went on vacation the second week of November. The week before, the tire light came on and the landlord fixed it while I was at work.

When I came back from vacation, one of the tires was completely flat. I had to take an Uber to the grocery store. The landlord was in Mexico, so he sent his associate to take the car to his mechanic in LA and fix the tire. When his associate came he found that the tag was expired. The tag had been expired for 5 months. I didn’t even know because I didn’t look at the tag. The associate was too nervous to drive it to the mechanic, so he took the tire to the mechanic. He was supposed to leave the car that he drove with me and take the car to the mechanic.

When he came back with the tire, he told me there was nothing wrong with the tire. My gut was telling me that there was something wrong. A tire just doesn’t go flat. I told my concerns to his associate but he told me that if I was pulled over by the cops they should just give me a warning. The hospital that I work at is right next to a police station.

The next day, the landlord calls me and says that the mechanic stated that someone was probably letting the air out of my tires at work. He said someone didn’t like me and that the tires were good. Again my gut was telling me that something was wrong with the tires. I only drive the car to work and the grocery store. My job is 10 minutes away and the grocery store is 5 minutes away from the house. He also said that someone stole my tag. He said that he put the new tag on in November when he last took the car to put some air in the tires. That still means that I was driving on an expired tag since the end of June.

My brother is a mechanic so I decided to get his opinion. I sent him pictures and videos of the tires. He confirmed what the first mechanic had said. There were cracks in the tires and they were about 7 years old. He said that I shouldn’t be driving on the tires.

I made a decision after that. I needed to get another rental car.

My landlord is a nice guy and I had asked him about two times if he had another rental car that I could rent. He had said no. I had asked if he would get the tires changed and he kept saying that he would but he never did.

I talked with my life coach about the situation and after that conversation it was clear that my landlord didn’t care about my feelings. He only cared that I was paying him on time. His actions were telling me that he didn’t care if I got pulled over for an expired tag or if the tires kept going flat. He allowed me to drive with an expired tag for 5 months.

I do take responsibility for the tag situation. I should have looked at the tag and let him know that it had expired. I was the one driving the car. He also had a responsibility to make sure the tag was up to date too. When the tag on my car is about to expire, I get something in the mail reminding me that the tag is about to expire.

This car situation was mirroring the situation at the hospital. In the hospital, we are reusing PPE that I was taught in nursing school was meant for one time use. Up until March, we could not use the same gown between multiple patients. We could not use the same mask more than once. Sometimes I feel like my life isn’t in my own hands anymore.

At least with the car situation, I could take my life back into my own hands. I could just rent another rental car.

I felt guilty about telling my old landlord that I wouldn’t be needing his car anymore. He was going through a lot of rough situations. I had asked for another rental car. He had also said many times before that he would replace the tires but he always came up with an excuse for not doing it. I needed to do what was best for me.

Now that I have another rental car, I can say that I feel safer in the car. I’m not afraid of the tires going flat. With a rental car company, if something goes wrong with this car, I can get a replacement car. I’m saving money because I don’t have to get another rental car when I go whale watching anymore. Yes, I am paying more money but I have peace of mind with this car. I’ve had the new rental car for 2 months and the low tire light hasn’t come on and the tires haven’t gone flat.

I am a little mad at myself for allowing this situation to go on for so long just to save money. I wasn’t even saving money because I was paying for 2 rental cars every week. The Turo car would be about $200 per month because I went whale watching every week.

Now that I look back at the situation, I have learned a lesson. Listen to myself. My gut was telling me that something was wrong with the car and I didn’t want to listen because another rental car would have been more expensive. I am committed to listening to my gut feeling. It hasn’t stirred me wrong yet. It is when I don’t listen that I get into trouble.

Have you ever had a situation where you didn’t listen to yourself?

One of my Worst Nightmares

Last week, I had one of my worst nightmares come true.

I went hiking, and as I was getting out of the car, I had this feeling that something bad was going to happen. I ignored the feeling because I really wanted to hike. I needed to be out in nature, and I needed to exercise.

As I was hiking, I was being careful. I thought the feeling meant that maybe I was going to fall and hurt myself. So, I was being very careful where I stepped and was going slow.

Towards the end of my hike, I took the road down the mountain. There were more people on the road than the nature trail, so I figured I would be safer with more people around. That feeling that something bad was going to happen wasn’t going away, it was getting stronger.

I was about 5 minutes from the parking lot and being done with my hike, when one of my worst nightmares happened.

I looked down and about 5 feet from my feet, there was a small snake.

I almost broke my ankle trying to run away.

I don’t know how I didn’t see it before then and there were people that were in front of me that didn’t see it either.

I guess I looked so freaked out that a man asked what was wrong with me. I told him about the snake, and he said that they come out at this time of day to feed.

I have been hiking at this mountain for years, and never seen one before then.

To say I was scared was an understatement. I hate snakes.

He walked with me a little way, until I calmed down.

I just couldn’t believe that I was that close to a snake. Thankfully I didn’t get bitten.

I usually go hiking at that mountain twice a week. I was so scared to go back because of what happened, but I also wanted to hike.

I gave myself four days to process what happened.

Five days after the incident, I went back to the mountain and went hiking.

I didn’t have that feeling that something bad was going to happen. I was more vigilant about my surroundings. I even saw a deer this time. I was nervous but by the end of the hike, I was relaxed.

I never want a repeat of what happened that day. From now on when I hike, I’m going to be more vigilant.

If I ever have that feeling again, I will listen to it. I will go home and hike another day. Maybe use the elliptical machine that day.

I am glad that I didn’t let one of my worst nightmares, scare me away from hiking again. I love to go hiking.

At least I know that my intuition works, even if I didn’t listen to it.

Have you ever known something was going to happen and you didn’t listen to your intuition? Or maybe you did listen.

Reasons

About 2 weeks ago, I was supposed to be flying to Italy.

Unfortunately, I got a text message around midnight the night before I was supposed to fly out, saying that my plans were cancelled.

I know that everything happens for a reason.

There is one good thing that came out of this situation.

My belly button piercing hasn’t been doing good at all lately. I developed an infection and then after that went away, a bump developed. It looked like my body was rejecting the piercing.

When I had the infection, the doctor said to take out the piercing. I didn’t do it because I wanted to keep my piercing. After the infection went away, the piercing was looking better until I wore some high waisted pants and it got really irritated.

The next day, a bump appeared. The skin started to shrink.

Two weeks ago, I had to take out the piercing because it looked like it was about to fall out on its own.

My plan was to go to a tattoo shop in Italy and see what could be done about the piercing. I don’t know how I was going to make it through the flight with my piercing still in. One good yank or if it got snagged on my clothing, the piercing was going to come out.

I went to a tattoo shop that was close to my parent’s house.

The tattoo artist looked at the piercing and said that it did need to come out. He made a plan for me and hopefully in 2 weeks I can get another belly button piercing. That all depends on what the old piercing site looks likes in 2 weeks.

I’m glad that I didn’t have to go to a tattoo shop in Italy. I had really wanted to go to one around my parent’s house. If I needed any medications, some of those medications may not have been available in Italy.

I found out the hard way, when I went to the United Kingdom that some medications that are over the counter in the United States, are not over the counter in the United Kingdom.

I’m just glad that I have a plan now on how to take care of my belly button piercing and hopefully will have another piercing in 2 weeks. This time I will follow all the aftercare instructions. I see what can happen when I don’t follow the instructions.

I do believe that everything happens for a reason. I also believed that I would make it to Greece next month.

I had already purchased a tour, and I didn’t cancel it.

I had been feeling a little bit stressed out because my company didn’t have any ships to put me on for the rest of the month. Thankfully I have a PRN job that I can pick up shifts at.

Yesterday I was playing Monopoly online and I was losing.

I had bought a lot of houses and hotels, but I had landed on chance and gotten the card that says you have to pay maintenance on your houses and hotels twice. I went from having over $4,000 to having a little over $400.

Then one roll changed it all.

My competitor landed on the space that had my hotel on it and from there on it was all downhill for my competitor. I ended up winning the game. Even though, I thought after I dropped down to $400, I was going to lose.

I had a thought after that, that my life can change for the better with one choice or decision.

Today, I got a call, and my company had a ship for me.

I’ll be going to Israel and Greece!!

I won’t have to cancel my tour. I just have to reschedule the date.

I’m thankful that I didn’t give up and stop asking my company for a spot.

Everything happens for a reason.

Words

Sticks and stones, may break my bones but words will never hurt me.

That was a saying that I learned when I was little.

When I first learned it, I believed it.

Now, I know that the saying wasn’t true.

Words can hurt you. Maybe not physically like sticks and stones. They can certainly hurt you emotionally.

I recently had someone tease me about not being one hundred percent black. I know she didn’t mean any harm by it, but it still hurt. Some of the things that were said, were the same things that I had heard from kids growing up about not being black enough.

I wish I could say that those words didn’t hurt anymore, but they did.

I wish I was at a point where I didn’t allow those words to hurt me but I’m not.

I’m forty years old and some things can still hurt me emotionally.

I’ve also had someone in my life, say that if you forgive someone then you should also forget what happened.

I’ve forgiven the people in my past, that said those things about me not being black enough. But I also can’t forget.

Why?

I don’t want to forget how they made me feel because I don’t want anybody to feel that way. By not forgetting that feeling, it helps me to be mindful of my words and actions. I don’t want to be the cause of anybody feeling how I felt in those moments of being called not black enough.

I know that people choose how they feel. No one can make you feel anything.

Being mean to people isn’t good for anybody. Saying mean things to people because of their heritage isn’t right. I can’t help the family that I was born into or my ancestors.

I appreciate all the people that came together to make me.

Words are very powerful.

They can hurt when not used properly. They can also uplift you.

I’m just going to be mindful of the words that I say and write.

Sticks and stones may break my bones and words can really hurt me.

Sometimes Listening is Hard to Do

Today, I landed in London.

My plan was to check into the hotel early and get a shower and then go see Stonehenge.

My plane landed at 6:30am and I had booked a tour that was at 8:30am.

I was hoping to get some sleep on the airplane. That didn’t happen at all. I was supposed to have the whole row to myself but there were some people that were flying stand by. So, both the seats next to me got taken at the last minute. I wasn’t able to lay down. It was also too noisy for me to sleep. I got about 2 hours of sleep.

I got to the hotel around 7:30am and they unfortunately didn’t have a room for me to check-in early.

I could have gone to the restroom and changed my clothes and freshened up.

I just didn’t feel like rushing.

So, I decided to listen to my body.

Sometimes listening to your body is hard to do.

It was a really hard decision to make because I really wanted to see Stonehenge.

I knew that if I went on the tour, I was going to have a very long day. The tour was 10 hours long. Hopefully I can get a refund.

I already had a long day. I didn’t get a room until 12pm. So, I sat in the lobby for about 4 and a half hours trying not to go to sleep. My flight had been 15 hours long.

Sometimes doing the right thing is hard.

I don’t know when I’m going to have another chance to go see Stonehenge. Maybe after my contract is over, I can stay a couple of days and then go see Stonehenge.

Do I regret my decision?

A little bit. I really did want to go but my body was just so tired after the day of traveling that I had just done.

I rested on and off the whole day which is exactly what my body needed. I feel so refreshed right now. I know that I wouldn’t have felt that way if I had gone on the tour.

In the end, I am glad that I listened to my body even though it was a hard decision.

Have you ever made a decision that was the right thing, but was really hard to make?

I know that I have seen my family make some decisions that were the right thing but was a hard decision to make.

Putting a loved one into a nursing home is a very hard decision to make. When that person needs 24-hour care and no one in the family can do it, then it becomes necessary to do the right thing for that loved one.

I saw firsthand how hard that decision was for my father. It was the right decision. No one in the family could stop working and be home with her.

I recently had to make a hard decision.

My belly button piercing got infected.

I went to the doctor.

The doctor recommended that I take out the belly button ring. The doctor said that it could turn into a bad wound and then my belly button would be messed up for life.

I listened to the doctor’s advice, but I also really wanted to keep my piercing.

I just got it in April, and I have come to love it.

I decided to keep it in.

The piercing is healing well now.

While I do recommend listening to your doctor, sometimes it helps to listen to your body.

I didn’t know for sure that my piercing was going to heal. I was nervous to leave it in because the doctor had said to take it out.

In the end, I made the best decision for me. I really had wanted to keep my piercing and if in the future I need to take it out, I will make the best decision for myself.

Turning the Big 4 0

Someone recently asked me how I feel because I’m about turn 40.

I told him that I feel great. This is the best that I’ve felt in my whole life.

If you had told me how my life was going to be when I was about to turn 40, I wouldn’t have believed you.

Ten years ago, I was depressed, battling an eating disorder, and I didn’t love myself. I avoided conflict and didn’t like to speak up for myself. I turned my life around by getting a life coach and working on my issues.

I recently had to have a hard conversation with someone. I messed up and I knew that I was going to have to tell this man what happened. I was so nervous that this man was going to say he didn’t want to speak to me anymore. I knew that I had to tell him what happened. As soon as I could, I had a face-to-face conversation with him. He ended up forgiving me and still wanting to talk to me.

The old Shavawn wouldn’t have been able to do that. I probably would have just ghosted the man because I just would have assumed that he wouldn’t want to talk to me anymore because of what I had done.

This new Shavawn talked about what happened and was honest with this man. I was able to communicate what I did and what I wanted. I’m excited to see what happens with this man.

I also told this man something that I’ve never said to anyone else.

I told him we can get to know each other and see where it goes.

I’m a relationship kind of woman. I love being in a relationship. I don’t like dating. Usually when I meet a guy that I like, I like to get into a relationship quickly and then we can get to know each other.

I decided to try something new this time. Because getting into a relationship quickly hasn’t been working for me. Maybe taking my time to get to know the guy before we get into a relationship will work this time.

I’m proud of most of the choices that I have made so far that lead me to this life.

Right now, I can say I love myself and I know myself. I finally have become the woman that I saw in my dreams. That woman was happy with her body and happy with herself.

I lost 50 pounds over 6 years ago, and I have kept it off. I found a lifestyle that I can maintain and doesn’t restrict me. I can eat a piece of cake if I want to. The difference now is that I don’t eat cake and doughnuts for breakfast, lunch, and dinner like I used to. For the most part, I eat healthy. I also exercise.

I found a job that I love. I work as a covid swabber on a cruise ship. I did love being a nurse, the pandemic burned me out.

Next week, I’m going to the United Kingdom and sailing to Norway, France, and Spain. That means that I will be spending my fortieth birthday internationally!!

This new company that I found lets us work on international ships.

I’ve learned and done so much in my forty years on this Earth.

I’m so glad that I decided to confront my issues and deal with them. If I had not of done that, then I wouldn’t be where I am right now.

Living a life that I love.

Mac Anderson said that “you’re always one choice away from changing your life.”

I have certainly proven that quote right.

What choice have you made in your life that completely changed your life?

I Don’t Agree

I was recently turned down from a job that I really wanted.

They sent an email saying that I didn’t have the skills or experience needed for the position.

I disagreed with that email because my last job was the same position. I have been a covid swabber on a cruise ship and I was applying to be a covid swabber on a cruise ship with a new company. I was confused as to why they would say that I didn’t have the skills or experience needed.

I talked to my friends and told them what the email said. I had given them the companies information and two of them got hired. While I was happy for them, I was confused as to why I didn’t get the position.

I emailed the recruiter and then I called her.

We talked and it ended up being a simple misunderstanding and she set me up for an interview the very next day.

I did the interview and ended up getting hired. They said I had the experience and skills that they needed. I was glad to hear that.

If I had not of called the recruiter, I wouldn’t have this job.

Some of my friends said it was because they liked me.

I think it’s because I didn’t accept what was said in the email and I took action. If I hadn’t of called the recruiter and talked to her about the email, then I wouldn’t have gotten the interview set up and been hired.

I could have just accepted the email and then moved on. There is another company that is hiring for covid swabbers.

I really wanted to work for this company because they have a lot of ships, and I can work international with this company.

With my last company, I was told that it was frowned upon to request a ship or request where you wanted to go. The company would decide where you were needed.

It wasn’t in the contract that I couldn’t ask, so I asked. I wanted to stay on a certain ship, and I asked, and I got to stay. I wanted to go to Alaska and asked. I got to go to Alaska.

I don’t know if the manager liked it, but she gave me what I asked for. She never told me to stop asking or that she couldn’t do it.

If you don’t ask the answer will always be no. The worst that the manager could have said is no. But she never did. I got what I asked for.

I remember my life coach saying, the squeaky wheel gets the grease. That means that if you don’t ask for something then you won’t get what you need or want.

When I’m afraid to ask for something, I think of that saying and then I ask.

Have you ever asked for something and gotten it or been told, no?

I’m not saying that you will get everything that you ask for but if you are told no, at least you asked. I’ve been told no before. I’m still proud of myself for asking.

I was nervous when I was calling the recruiter about the rejection email. She could have said that she agreed with the hiring managers and told me sorry. Thankfully she didn’t agree with the email and talked to the hiring manager for me.

For Old People?

I recently had someone tell me that whale watching is for old people.

I was telling this person that I was going to go whale watching before I got on my new ship. My plan was to fly to Newport Beach and then Seattle to whale watch.

I wasn’t expecting this person to say that whale watching is for older people. Whale watching doesn’t have an age limit.

I had a love for whales since I was little. I wanted to be an oceanographer, but I gave up on that idea because I couldn’t swim.

When I went whale watching yesterday, the captain said that I should be a naturalist because he could hear and see the passion that I had for whales. He said that he learned a lot from me about whales. I could talk about whales all day and not get bored, especially killer whales.

Two of my favorite movies are about killer whales, The Whale that Ate Jaws and The Killers in Eden. I could watch those movies all day long. I’ll post the links to them.

https://www.nationalgeographic.com/tv/movies-and-specials/the-whale-that-ate-jaws-new-evidence

I’m going to watch these movies after I finish this post.

I thought about what that person said, and I decided that it didn’t matter. I know that whale watching isn’t just for old people. Whale watching is relaxing to me. I love to see the whales and dolphins. I try to go whale watching every chance that I get.

I can’t base my life on what other people think and say. I’m not hurting anyone going whale watching and I’m going to continue.

I’ve done so many things that other people told me not to do. If I had of listened to them, then I wouldn’t be living the life that I love right now. I wouldn’t have done sky diving, paragliding, travel nursing, or working on a cruise ship.

At one point in my life, someone told me not to do any of those things. I did them anyway and had a great time.

There is a time and place to listen to some people’s advice but at the end of the day, you have to do what you feel is best for your life.

I did take into account all of the advice that I had received but I wanted to live a life that I loved.

I found a job on Facebook that sounded too good to be true, but it was the best decision that I could have made. I’ll be working in Alaska over the summer and go whale watching too.

Your life is for you to live.

Have you ever made a decision that other people said you shouldn’t have made but it turned out to be a great decision for you?

For example, when I wanted to be a travel nurse, so many people said that it wasn’t a good decision. It turned out to be a great decision for me and it led me to the life that I’m living right now.

I’ll continue to go whale watching whether people think that it’s for older people. There is no age limit on living your dreams or doing a hobby that you love.

What Are You Known For?

I recently saw this post in a Facebook group that made me think.

This woman didn’t like the fact that she was known for her hair. She wore a wig and got complimented on it almost every day. She said she didn’t like it because it wasn’t her hair.

That got me thinking because on the cruise ship that I’m on, I’m known for my hair. When people describe me, they say the girl with the big curly hair. There is only one other woman on the ship that wears her hair like me. Every time we see each other, we compliment each other on our hair because our hair looks similar.

I usually wear my hair straight but I don’t have the time or my straight hair products to do that.

In the beginning, that did irritate me that people would compliment my hair first. I think I have a beautiful smile.

I realize now, that my hair is more noticeable when I wear it naturally curly. It stands out more than my smile.

I also realize that I was letting my alopecia get in the way. I don’t know if I’m going to get another bald spot or not. I don’t know if my hair will thin. I would rather have people notice my smile just in case my hair won’t be this beautiful again. Right now my hair is doing good! No bald spots, thinning, or excessive shedding. I’m going to enjoy that while it lasts. I hope it lasts!

I also realize that I can’t control what people know me for. Some people know me for my big smile. Some people know me for my hair. Some people know me as the girl who loves to take pictures of rainbows.

I can’t control what people know me for any more than I can control the rainbow when I’m trying to take a picture of them. Sometimes they go away before I can take a picture. Sometimes they transform before my eyes into something even more incredible. This next picture, I was trying to take a picture of a rainbow in a cloud and then the moon appeared!

This rainbow was right outside my balcony!

So while I do understand this womans frustration over what people compliment her on, I also understand that I can’t control what people say or what they notice about me.

Think about what you are known for. What compliment do people give you? Do you agree with them or do you not?

This is my curly hair, my smile, and Bonnie the sea lion!

It’s ok to take the compliments. You don’t have to agree with them but you also can’t control what people notice about you.

Grief

I’m learning that grief is not ending.

There are said to be five stages of grief. They are denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance.

Ever since my Aunt Charlotte died, I haven’t been the same. Some days I feel ok and other days I don’t. I still wish that I could talk to her.

I’m probably in the depression stage of grief over my Aunt Charlotte right now.

I know that I will be grieving over my Aunt Charlotte for the rest of my life and bouncing in between the stages of grief.

My aunt died only a few months ago. Her birthday was the day after mine. This will be my first birthday without her. I don’t know how I’m going to feel on my birthday or the next day.

I still grieve over my best friend. She and I had been friends for over 10 years when she and I decided not to be friends anymore. That was about 5 years ago.

Some days I’m fine and other days I’m not. I do think about her and hope that she is happy. I heard a song recently and it reminded me of her and I wanted to cry.

Even though I have accepted that we can’t be friends anymore that doesn’t stop me from having memories of our friendship and grieving that loss. She was a huge part of my life just like my aunt.

I’m still learning how to grieve a relationship that I thought could be but it didn’t last. I do wish that I had never met this guy so that I wouldn’t be heartbroken right now but it did happen. It was also a mistake going back to the same ship after he left. I thought I could handle it but I’m learning that I can’t. There are memories everywhere of him.

So even though I told my company that I would stay on the ship, I think for my peace of mind, I’m going to go to another ship. To get over him, I need to be in a different environment that doesn’t have any memories of him.

Unfortunately I might always have memories of him but hopefully with time, I won’t think of him as often.

Grief is a life long process.

I’m going to be fluctuating between all the stages for my entire life. I will learn how to navigate grief. Sometimes I just need to talk and sometimes I just need to cry.

Some experiences in life will have a person grieving and some experiences won’t. Navigating through grief can be overwhelming at times. It’s ok to ask for help. Sometimes therapy is needed to help a person through grief.

Because whether we like it or not, at some point in our lives, we all will welcome grief into our lives.

Every body moves through grief at there own pace. So if you feel like you should be over a situation, don’t be hard on yourself.

Grieve at your own pace and be patient with yourself.

I do feel like I should be over this man and not be sad. I want to move very fast through the grieving process with this situation. But unfortunately I can’t. I need to give myself time, patience, and grace. One day I might even be grateful for this situation.

If you ever feel like you’re moving slowly through the grieving process, just know that you’re going at your own pace. Every one is different.

Grief is not linear.

One day, you might be in acceptance and the very next day be angry.

Heartbreaking Lessons

I just got home from working on a cruise ship since October.

I had a great time up until the end.

I met a great guy and thought it could turn into something real but it didn’t work out that way. I let myself get caught up in what was happening.

I was trying to not let myself hope for a future and just enjoy the moment. I realized that I had already begun to hope without realizing it. I had got my feelings involved.

I learned some lessons through this heartbreak.

The first lesson I learned is to tell the person early on what I’m looking for. That way I don’t waste my time on a guy that doesn’t want what I want.

I’m looking for a long-term relationship and if I had of spoken up in the beginning then maybe I wouldn’t have started to really like the guy and hope for a future with him. He was a great guy, and we had a lot in common. But his job takes him away a lot and it would be hard to see him even if we had tried to make it work.

The advice that I had received about this idea of saying what you want too early in a relationship can make the guy uncomfortable. I had always wanted to tell the guy around the third date what I was looking for. Some people have told me that that is too early. I feel like that could weed out the people that are just looking for a fling or a short-term relationship. I also wouldn’t get my feelings hurt if the guy chose to leave.

I realized that I had unconsciously been following the advice that I had been given. I remember one friend telling me that you want to get to know the guy first before even deciding if he is worth having in your life. At the time, this advice made sense to me. Now it doesn’t. By the time that I figure that out, I may already have feelings for the guy and then I may want a certain outcome to happen.

If I had taken my own advice, then I might not be in the situation that I’m in now. Liking a guy and him not wanting to do a long-distance relationship. I would have known what he was looking for and not continued to see him and catch some feelings.

I’ve learned that what works for other people may not work for me. Other people may not discuss early in the dating game what they are looking for but that doesn’t work for me. I want to know what the other person wants and if we want the same things. That way I can make an informed decision about what to do or not do.

Speaking up for what I want and speaking my boundaries will work for me.

Some dating advice that I have gotten is to date multiple people at the same time. That way you have options and you get to chose which one is the best for you.

I’ve never been the person to do that. I like to date one guy at a time. I don’t like to date multiple guys at the same time. That may work for some people but not me.

I did have a lot of admirers on the ship. I wouldn’t feel good if I had started to try to date all of them at the same time. It would have caused a lot of drama. Even just dating one person caused some drama.

There are many approaches to dating that work for some and don’t work for others.

I just have to find my own way that works for me and listen to my own voice.

I also learned what kind of man I want in my life from this situation. I want a man that is honest about his feelings and respects me. Looking back at this guy he didn’t respect me. I did allow the disrespect so I can’t even be mad at him. I didn’t tell the guy what I was feeling.

Now looking back at the whole situation, I can say that we wouldn’t have worked out in the long run. So, I just have to get over my feelings and move on.

Hopefully I will apply these lessons to the next relationship that I have because I don’t like to be sad or heartbroken.