Wednesday, March 26, 2008

A year ago today

After I was divorced, like a lot of people, I ventured into the world of online dating. It's such a wacky time, there's this hole in your life because you're used to being the other half of a couple. At the beginning, on the one hand, you know you're supposed to establish yourself as this independent person. One the other hand, the loneliness seems overwhelming, so you want companionship.

I filled out my profile and began to correspond with men about this and that. And over the course of 2006 went out on a lot of first dates. There were no psychos, but there was always the imbalance of one person liking the match and the other person not feeling the chemistry. And sometimes, both parties felt that way! I wasn't a patient online dater, either. I could check my inbox 25 times a day to see if I had gotten correspondence.

By the end of 2006 I had about had it with online dating. I wasn't meeting anyone I really wanted to spend time with, hadn't really clicked with anyone. Then I read an article in Discover magazine, which is a magazine about science, about an online dating service for scientists, call Science Connection.

It's a small operation, and they don't match people. You put up your profile, and if you see someone you are interested in, you email them on your own. I think it was $10 a month, and I joined for three months. With SciConnect, you can list what your degree(s) are in, and what types of biology (cell? or organismal?) you're interested in. And you get to display one picture, none of this 'here are 10 photos of me and my dog and my mom and my beautiful friends'.

The downside of a small operation that caters to a small subset of people is that there may not be anyone local that you find worth emailing. Sure enough, while there were a couple (really, just a couple) of men from the area, I had to expand my idea of what was an acceptable distance quite a bit. I thought, "well, within a day's drive". Then I saw this one guy's profile...

He was from AZ (not too bad, our states touch at least), he had kids, was about my age, liked the same kinds of biology, and worked as a tour guide. Interesting. But I figured, having kids, he'd not want to correspond with someone so far away. However, I figured he should at least know that someone with similar interests found him interesting, so I emailed him a short note.

Then he replied, and asked questions in his reply. A good sign, as it necessitates further replies!

The story of when we actually met is a good one and I'll save that for another time.

Long story short, it is now a year later, and we are in a long distance relationship that is working, at least for the moment. I don't feel lonely when I'm alone (too busy!) and we see each other when we can. Skype, cell phones and email are good things indeed. I don't know how people did it when all they could do was write letters.

So, it's a bit of a celebratory day, and I'm so pleased CB is in my life!

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Hi, sorry to make the humans do an extra step.