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Delight Steers Strength

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A Lesson from On-Line Dating

After hearing on the news that we’d likely be living this Corona-lifestyle for another year. I joined a dating site!

This was a change of heart. It happened after years of nudging friends urged me to try internet dating. And I saying, “No way! I’m not proving my desirability with my resume’. I’m a being, not a doing!

But we’ve all had to pivot in many ways to survive this pandemic. How I meet a fella suddenly felt less important than meeting a fella.

An interesting man and I started messaging back and forth. Every time he’d message me, I’d linger 3-4 days before responding. Because the delight I felt, that someone saw me and liked me, kept growing for that many consecutive days. It was delightful. I didn’t want to interrupt the stretch inside me by responding immediately.

Apparently, a little attention goes a long way, when you’ve been living alone for 6-months in a pandemic–– single! Finally, when the delight leveled off, I’d message him back.

Within a half-day he’d retort. And the same rhythm continued. I’d respond in 3-4 days and he’d respond within a day.

Our banter was enjoyable, for about three or four exchanges. Then I was like, is he gonna ask me out or what? I had no interest to meander along fantasizing about a man I’d never really met. We live in the same city after all.

Believing that a strong man asks a woman out, and I want a strong man, I waited.

But when the ask didn’t come as soon as I wanted it, the delight turned to disappointment. My belief interpreted his reserve as weak.

I suddenly realized, I was misguided.

I wasn’t being me. I wasn’t serving my rhythm when I didn’t, wouldn’t or couldn’t ask him out. I was instead, doing me. I was doing what I had done for years with in-person dating. I was doing my resume’ while running interference with dating.

Shocked that I was hiding behind a belief that kept me powerless to choose what I wanted. I realized I was protecting myself from choosing wrong. A belief that kept me safe and free, but unfulfilled.

I wanted to follow the inner stretch of being delighted.

In my next message, as if my body’s need to get real led my fingers, I gave him my phone number. I could feel my mind hesitating, holding fast to safety, but I carried on and pushed SEND.

In his typical style, in half an hour he called. He asked me out to a museum that afternoon!

What is strength to you?

Does strength have a look or feeling or rule? How do you measure strength beyond the weight of a barbell? Is strength vulnerable or stoic?

In this story, I don’t believe strength lies in who called who or who asked who out. Finally listening for what brought me delight and acting on it, was where strength lied.

Strength was had by living what was feeding my delight. And the level of delight measured my honesty with myself.

Where is your doing misaligned with your being? When or where do you lose the feeling of delight? What beliefs need review to reclaim your delight?

To my surprise, on-line dating opened my eyes to something that in-person dating hadn’t been able to do. Maybe on-line working and socializing has more depth than we realize at first glance?

Please comment below about your view on STRENGTH.