Category Archives: Dating

Engaged!

I meant to write this awhile ago and I just didn’t (I even wrote a draft in a notebook that now I am completely ditching). But, if you don’t follow me on social media, here’s what’s up: I’m engaged.Pink with Diamond Icon Photo Engagement Announcement

The past few months have been filled with peaks and valleys that are just a part of life but all the while my relationship with C has deepened. He is an incredible teammate, kind, patient, and funny. It’s been a few weeks since he proposed and it still feels surreal even though we are in full wedding planning mode.

If you would have asked me if this is where I would be one year ago, I’d have laughed. And I know that C can say the same. The way God knit together our story is so unique. Parts of it are so special that I am keeping them private. At the same time, I want to share our joy and excitement with you all since you have been with me through other seasons of my life too.

We are better together than we are apart which is what makes it so cool. At the same time, I’m very aware of the parts of myself I am stubborn or prideful over. Like all things, God is using this relationship to sanctify both C and I. I’d just say this feels very intense at times. And from what I’ve been told from what married friends, that will only become more intense. I’m more aware of my need for Jesus than ever and we are both keenly aware that our relationship needs Him too. He is, after all, the author of it.

So, some questions you may have…

How did he do it?

I always say I want to be surprised but I also am so impatient that they never work out. So the day it happened, I knew it was coming. But when he told me the plan for the day he talked about going to several places that are important to us and dinner. It made me think he would do it then obviously. Instead, he surprised me as I was getting ready for the day as in if he would have done it two minutes later, I might have been wearing a face mask and there was a podcast blaring as I settled in to “get ready.” So I didn’t imagine I would be in the middle of washing my face with wet hair but it was perfect. He ended up actually proposing in front of a piece of furniture I helped him to make. (He is a woodworker as a hobby and I was his assistant on his project). I cried. He cried. I whispered the word, “Yes,” way more quietly than either of us imagined and then leaped into his arms.

When are you getting married?

March! C is a teacher so to a certain extent we are the mercy of that calendar. Originally, we considered doing it over winter break but the way the holidays fall this year would have made it very difficult for the people we love and would like there so: looks like Spring Break!

How is planning going?

In fits and bursts. A lot of things have (thankfully) fallen into place in a beautiful way. C has been helpful and both of our families have also been supportive. The main stuff is booked and now we just have random things to nail down.

We are also making the conscious choice not to just be planning for a wedding but a marriage. So it means premarital, financial courses, etc. That’s really important to us, building a foundation, and knowing that it doesn’t just happen. But that’s something that is just important to us. Everyone and every relationship is different.

Dress?!

Not yet. I’m waiting to be able to share the day with my mom, who isn’t local. So that will be in a few weeks. I have no idea what I want except that I would like it to be flattering and comfortable.

To be honest, one of the biggest challenges to wedding planning has simply been that I never really thought I would meet the guy and get married. So I never really was that little girl who pictured some things. I had some vague ideas like I would like for it to be in church (Spoiler: it’s not because of my chronic illness we are doing everything in all one place because I want to make it through the day and to my wedding night too! I’ve waited a long time. Ha. So that means cutting down on anything that would expend more energy than necessary and one of those things is travel in the city. What a nightmare.).

But anyway, because I hadn’t dreamt of this day my whole life, only just hoped I would someday be married, I didn’t really know what I liked or wanted. After a lot of talking with C and pinteresting, we definitely have a vision and a vibe.

But as for a dress, I just want to be comfortable in the dress and in my own skin

Where’s the ring?

I’m a little paranoid so I have been really careful about what I post on social media and here too. I did want an engagement ring but I had no idea what I wanted so C suggested I go look. I fell in love with a yellow gold setting but he surprised me with the shape of the center stone and I’m so in love with it. It’s everything I never knew I wanted and I can’t imagine anything else on my hand. Although I am still getting used to having it on my finger and will be for a long time. I feel like I can objectively say it’s beautiful and classic with a twist (which is the perfect mix of me and C to be honest. Ha!)

If you made it this far, you’re kind and sweet. I am so behind in announcing it here but I do want to chronicle the wedding planning process to a certain degree. So…here we go.

xo

Subscribe to the Monthly Newsletter!

* indicates required

Hello: A Real Update!

Hey, there. I’m stopping by this place for two reasons. One, I’ve missed it (and all of you) and two, I just had to pay for my hosting and had to make a major decision. Was I ready to quit blogging completely? The answer was no. So I am dipping my toe in. I just want to update you on what’s been going on with me.lifeupdate

I’ve been writing full time which is both super rewarding and also a major hustle. I think that’s one reason this space has been kind of vacant because for so long it was an outlet. And now I am doing the thing I love. But I have realized no matter how much freelancing writing I do, there are some creative parts of blogging (and the community!) that can’t be replaced. And so I decided I just can’t quit you yet.

My building was bought by someone new which forced me to move again. Yeahhhhh. Maybe you’re glad I wasn’t blogging regularly during that time because how many times have y’all heard me complain about moving (many times because I’ve moved many times and it is always the worst). But I am still in Chicago.

I’m in a serious relationship. Surprise! Around this time last year (actually, exactly around this time) my old roomie and bestie forced me to get out there and start dating which I did with gusto. I learned a lot. I even wrote a bit about dating during the election for HelloGiggles. Post election, I was seeing someone kind of regularly…in that we were talking but he lived out of state. He did come visit and it was great. Except it was the weekend after the election and what I had seen as mostly minor political differences before suddenly could not be ignored. I was just…I couldn’t.

A bit later, I was on a random app that a girl at church recommended (Coffee Meets Bagel…honestly I love that app, especially if you are in a city. I also wrote a review about all the apps/sites I tried here).  One of the first guys on there asked to see me that night. He will be called C.

I didn’t want to go. I’m not good at being spontaneous because of my chronic illness. But my roomie/bestie pushed me. And I went. And it was really good. As were our subsequent dates. Then my grandmother fell.

My mom actually moved to take care of my grandparents (my papa passed away two and a half years ago). The only way to get there is either a six-hour drive or an hour flight and then a two-hour car ride. It wasn’t the easiest. But as soon as she fell my bestie/roomie insisted that she make the drive so I could see her. I will forever be grateful for that because I was able to tell her I loved her and talk to her when she was lucid (though she had a very serious brain bleed). Even writing it, it’s hard to fathom that the next morning I left with my friend to go back to Chicago and Granny went into surgery. She never fully woke up again. There was a lot of back and forth and it was just a really hard time. I cannot emphasize how indebted I am to my roomie for driving and insisting I go.

I’m not going to linger on this topic because, honestly, it’s hard. So, please don’t take me skipping around as being flippant.

While all this was going on, C and I had just started seeing one another exclusively. Wow. Talk about a lot for the beginning of a relationship. Because we all know it’s not just losing someone – that’s hard enough – there is other baggage that comes out of the woodwork. And so.

But God has been faithful and good both to me (and us) and also my family. The last couple months (including moving) have been some of the most difficult and rewarding. In that time, I also fostered C’s puppy. We went to Austin to visit his aunt and uncle. I was published in my dream publication. Somehow winter turned to spring here in Chicago which is always one of the best times of the year.

And here we are.

This past year has been full. And that’s one reason I wasn’t here either I suppose. But I also know now that I don’t want to stay away anymore. And so I’ll see you tomorrow. Yes, really.

(follow me on IG/ twitter: @nbwearsflowers)

xo,
Signature

Subscribe to the Monthly Newsletter!

* indicates required

2017: The Year of Grit.

gritThere were a lot of words I want my 2017 word to represent: perseverance, fearlessness, tenacity, and determination. And I think I’ve finally settled on it: Grit. So bring it on – 2017: The Year of Grit.brownie2

For me, it’s a companion and continuation to last year’s choice of “gumption.” I opened myself up. I tried new things. I learned to be vulnerable. Now, I want to be fearless in the face of that vulnerability. Those new things I tried? Things I have wanted to try for so long but just didn’t have the gumption? Now, I am chasing after them with as much grit as possible. Rejection won’t get me down and neither will failure (after all, what is failure? In my book, this year, failure is only not trying).

paris

Grit, girls. It’s a tough world we live in. We are better for having and living with grit and steely eyes. We are not hard, though. It’s possible to be both tough and vulnerable. Sometimes vulnerability is the toughest choice we can make (at least for me). For me, vulnerability is awfully tough and is going to require some grit as I continue on this journey.converserug

So watch out world. I’m coming for you, full of grit. Maybe I’ll fall on my face. Maybe I’ll get hurt. It doesn’t matter like it once did. It’s worth it, the trying. Because you just might get that thing you’ve been dreaming of.
Signature

Subscribe to the Monthly Newsletter!

* indicates required

365 Days Full of Gumption.

The title of this is slightly misleading because I cannot say I lived every day, 365 days full of gumption in 2016. But actually, a few weeks ago, when I was considering picking a new word for a new year, I couldn’t help but reflect on the last one.

My first response when reflecting on how I did with a year of gumption was, “Oh, man. I totally forgot to focus on that. I did not have gumption at all.” And then the voice in my head immediately told that voice to shut up. Because this year was all about gumption.gumption

Sure, when I decided on gumption, I was talking about my career and personal life. And I fell short in terms of career. I let fear and rejection get in my way until the last few months of the year. But every other part of my life? Man, this was a growing year. I talked about courage, spunk, guts and if learning how to date–and ending the year in a relationship–isn’t those things, I don’t know what is.

(For the record, I am fully aware that most people know how to date just fine. But for me, being vulnerable, putting myself out there was the opposite of natural. I had to start using emotional muscles I didn’t even know I had. And with the support of some important people, I learned so much and grew so much).gumptiongirl

When I talk about the dating I did this year, I will be the first to say that it was work. Not just the time investment but the emotional one. But it was worth it and it paid off in spades because of…you guessed it…gumption.

Because of all this, I feel more myself than ever in my life. I feel more at peace with the woman than I am. And I am more dedicated than ever to growing. I don’t want to be stagnant and I don’t want these muscles to atrophy.

And in many ways, 2016 was a garbage year for a lot of people. I’m talking news wise and personal stuff. But at the same time…some incredible stuff happened in 2016 too. Nothing is all good or all bad. Not even 2016. The best parts though were personally fueled by gumption, by God’s grace. gumption

As for next year, or rather, this year? I have settled on a new word. I know this hasn’t been a place I have written in super regularly but I can promise you that my word will be here tomorrow ready to be unveiled…because I know you are just dying to know it. 🙂

Cheers to gumption. As I said originally, it will get you everywhere.

Love,
Signature

Subscribe to the Monthly Newsletter!

* indicates required

The Truth about Ghosting.

The Truth about Ghosting

For the record, I have said I would never ghost someone. For the record, I also said I would never do online dating. I am online dating. And I have ghosted. I had reasons. So here we are: the truth about ghosting.

But first…

(Please know I am writing this because I was asked too. I want to respect everyone, really. Also, the graphic is not a real conversation…I made it up on a website LOL but is perhaps inspired by real events).

For those of you who did not know what ghosting is, the urban dictionary defines it as: “The act of suddenly ceasing all communication with someone the subject is dating, but no longer wishes to date. This is done in hopes that the ghostee will just “get the hint” and leave the subject alone, as opposed to the subject simply telling them he/she is no longer interested. Ghosting is not specific to a certain gender and is closely related to the subject’s maturity and communication skills. Many attempt to justify ghosting as a way to cease dating the ghostee without hurting their feelings, but it in fact proves the subject is thinking more of themselves, as ghosting often creates more confusion for the ghostee than if the subject kindly stated how he/she feels.”

Now, based on that definition, I guess I have not ghosted.

Let me explain. I never thought I would ghost someone because I really do seek to treat people the way I want to be treated. It would hurt my feelings, no matter how invested I was or wasn’t, if someone just ceased talking to me. So I made a policy to never ghost.

But did I mention that I made that policy at a time when I wasn’t really dating, let alone internet dating?

What I have come to understand about internet dating (and, in some cases, dating in general) is that sometimes I have to go with my gut. I am all about meeting sooner rather than later (safely though) (and I should probably do a post on that concept too!) but depending on if they are close or far away, you may not meet them before your gut is telling you: uh oh. I’ve gone on plenty of dates from online dating and even briefly dated someone from it. But in the two cases where I ghosted on purpose, my gut was going off like a car alarm.

Ghosting Case Number One:

Let’s call him Sam. Sam seemed super nice and intentional…at first. We had a skype date after communicating for awhile. He was a couple of minutes late because he wanted to iron his shirt (he confessed with embarrassment to me). This endeared Sam to me. I share these details to show you that Sam was and I am sure, is not, a monster. He appeared sweet and kind. After the skype date, we started to text. This is when things went to a place I was not comfortable.

He started talking to me a lot, including many selfies and pictures of every part of his day…and I do mean every part of his day. This would still not be reason enough to ghost for me, especially with my relatively little experience with internet dating at this point. He started asking me for photos, specific photos. Nothing totally dirty. Sam is a Christian. But when I said no, I will not send you a picture of me in my pjs (!!!), he did not respect my boundaries.

He also started using terms of endearment as soon as we finished with the skype date. Again, this would not be reason enough for me to ghost someone. But when I was really upfront about the fact that it made me uncomfortable because we had only skyped once, he argued with me. Continue reading

Subscribe to the Monthly Newsletter!

* indicates required