A Week of Dates

I love love.

There is nothing more beautiful than seeing two people in love. When you see them look at each other with this power that looks like moonbeams could just shoot out of their fingertips because the feelings they have for one another, you just wish that one day you give someone those moonbeams.

Don’t worry, I’m not going soft on you, readers.

This past weekend, a great friend from high school came back into town to get married. Her and her handsome beau live in Hawaii and wanted to celebrate with friends and family back in their home state, so they left paradise and came back to the goofy weather, that is Iowa. I was so thrilled to see my friend and catch up, but honestly, I was a little nervous at the same time.

I’d never gone to a wedding stag. Usually I’d go with my parents or my ex, so I at least would have someone to sit next to and chat with, but a few months ago when I received my RSVP, there was no plus one on my invite.

Honestly, I panicked. What the hell was I supposed to do? Be like fucking Steven Glansberg and eat by myself?? (Superbad reference for those who might not know…) Who was I going to dance with? This whole break up has given me opportunities to be on my own, but this was a first and it hadn’t even crossed my mind up until I saw my name solo.

Whatever. I’d own it. I chatted with a couple of my friends who were all going or going to be in it and they all offered me their dates to hang with throughout the night.

I decided to wholeheartedly embrace this stag wedding. Turns out, my friend’s wedding wasn’t about me. Weird, right?

I booked a blow out to get my hair done perfectly, found a dress that fit me like a glove, took my mom out for pedis and lunch and finished my makeup while talking with my roommate.

I was supposed to meet up with some couples at a brewery before, but I went to the venue on my own and just hung out until more couples came.

Once the ceremony started and I saw my friend walk down the aisle looking like she was floating on a cloud and a smile that showed so much love and happiness, I lost it. I just started crying out of joy. Seeing her so in love with her soon to be husband was the moment I didn’t know I needed to see.

Their faces throughout their ceremony and reception reminded me that I was going to be okay. I’d get my moonbeams. It was about their moonbeams that night and I couldn’t have been happier to be a part of it and see their love.

The wedding overall was just beautiful. The food was on point, my table was so fun and I even snagged a dance with a guy. I mean, yeah, it was my friend’s boyfriend, but still! I got to dance. I sweat in my dress, but my ride or die roomie picked me up from the reception with Secret Super Strength, perfume and my makeup bag. I held my dress out the window, spritzed some perfume and took care of my sweat and we headed out into the night to see what downtown had to offer. It was a fun filled night with so much love, I didn’t know what to do with myself.

Okay, welcome to Part Two.

I went on a date!

With a dude. Not myself!

So, I went on like one drink date in February, but I didn’t get nervous or anything, I just wanted to go on a date and it didn’t have the sparks I wanted, so I don’t think it counts.

I went on a semi date in May, but I didn’t get much planning in beforehand so I’m not sure it counts either.

So. I’m considering this one my first date. “Oh, that’s so sweet, Hannah! How’d you meet?”

Well. Um.

It all begins with a flame. A flame that burns many loins of 20 somethings. I’m talking Tinder.

For those of you who may not know what Tinder is, it’s basically a dating app that caters to your ego. You put up your best pictures that show your personality or whatever vibe you want to put out, followed by a tagline that sets you apart from the crowd. You can select your age and distance range and then the app goes through and finds other people who fall into both those categories. You swipe right on the ones who do it for ya and give em a big ole left swipe if they are snarfy. Lemme tell you. You see some things on there.

Rewind to 2 weeks ago. I was aimlessly swiping right and left and then I see this cutie with a funny tagline. Basically, if a guy has wit, he has my attention and probably my heart. So I gave him a like. Whoa! We matched! Awwwwww yeah!

I got a witty message right away and I was super excited. Of course, in order to not show him I was super excited, I waited a few to respond. We had a cute little banter back and forth and then he asked me to do a puzzle for him.

See, the thing about Tinder is, guys can either be super stupid and just flat out tell you something pervy, or they get crafty and make it fun to figure out what they mean, so I was a bit hesitant for this puzzle. It ended up being a fill in the blank that looked something like this “(___) – ___-____” since that looked longer than my social security number, I obliged and gave him my digits.

We had text seshes throughout the week and I learned he was an engineer with a local seeding company in the area and was only here temporarily before he moved back to finish his Masters at Cornell. Yeah, like the real one. This was a little intimidating because I got B’s in my Comm classes at my state university so I was a smidge nervous.

Anyway, he asked me for drinks and I was over the moon excited, so I accepted and suggested we go out to the bars near my apartment in case I got cat fished or whatever, I could dash home.

As previously stated, my roommate is the best and came home to help me get ready, glass of wine in hand for me. It may or may not have turned into a bottle of wine, but hey, I was nervous. She mastered the smoky eye look for me without making me look like a drag queen, put me in a flowy top and sent me on my way.

Thank goodness for me, no cat fishing occurred. He was definitely my Tinder man. He was even more handsome in person. We chatted all night and I had a smile glued to my face. We talked about our goals, exchanged funny stories, discussed a bit of politics (wait, you’re NOT supposed to do that on a first date????) and just had a perfect time.

He held my hand and it gave me butterflies. Butterflies are something I haven’t had in a while, so it was a nice reminder that they would show up again.

We stayed out till bar close and ended on a sweet note with plans of meeting up again before he had to leave the following week. We set up a movie date for wine and It’s Always Sunny. A man after my own heart, right?

He moved back to New York and it’s a total bummer, but we are still kind of texting. We will see. My friend told me that it was more of a reminder that there are guys out there who will make me feel that way again. It was a nice reminder and he is honestly an amazing guy, but the whole living like 8 states away is kind of a killer.

Anyway, that was my week. Sorry for the long post, but it was eventful and happy. I felt amazing on both of my dates, whether if it was just enjoying myself at a wedding or being with a guy from Tinder, it just got me excited for what’s to come. Hopefully moonbeams.

Dear 18 Year Old Hannah

Hey Hannah,

Oh look at you, bright eyed and bushy tailed and grabbing life by the balls. You’ve got everything figured out, don’t you? You’re going to live in Chicago and become a writer, right? Oh, that’s so cool. I’ve got some bad news for ya, sweetheart. The closest you’ll get to living in Chicago is liking one of Liz’s photos on Instagram. (I’ll fill you in on Instagram later).

I’m not going to sugar coat it for you: You’re kind of an idiot. You did not seriously just roll your eyes at me, did you? Well, I hate to break it to you, but you’re going to do so many dumb things in your life, it’s honestly amazing that you’ve made it this far without ending up in some Turkish prison.

Sure, you also do amazing and daring things that none of your friends do, but you’re also going to find yourself stumbling and in a big mess that you made and you’re going to have to clean it up yourself. (I’m not talking about the super awesome fitted Abercrombie and Fitch sweats you bought with your mom’s Discover.) I’m talking about truly messed up pickles you will find yourself in, and believe it or not, they’re 100% avoidable.

Let’s start with your grades in high school. They sure were colorful. Naturally, you did wonderful in English, German and any writing course, but you know what you completely slacked in and didn’t even care to learn about? Economics. Had you maybe opened up the book instead of copying Derek Meyers’ papers, you might have learned a thing or two about the financial world instead of just relying on that same Discover card to help you through life. Seriously, it would have helped. Not even going to mention math because, it won’t get any better. Even if your accounting professor in college is the man, he will tell you that he’d never trust you with books, but he’d trust you with anything else. Just smile about it and use your phone’s calculator.

You graduated ALMOST in the top half of your class, just under 2%, which in turn, made you go to a community college instead of the university you had hoped to attend. If you applied yourself a liiiiittle more and got off AIM, you easily could have gone. Come on. I’ll let you in on a secret (the dude you like so much will totally end up with someone who’s not you over and over and over again. Just hang up the phone on that one.) Your not so subtle lyrics as your away message are more obvious than you thought, too. Seriously, just give it up.

So, you get this once in a lifetime opportunity to go to Germany for a year. That’s so, so, so amazing! Trust me, it’ll set you apart from the crowd and you seriously need this to grow up because right now, you’re a loose canon who thinks a movie theatre job could turn into a career. Your host family is so caring and perfect, you’ll have to pinch yourself to believe you’re really there with them. You’ll have many firsts there, and you need to embrace every moment because you’re in for a long ride when you get back to The States. You’ll be out in weird situations, which honestly, you handle yourself pretty well in, despite everything. You’re ballsy and you use your wit to get yourself out of some weird situations. Heads up, don’t leave Brian and Ian to go get beer at a soccer game. You’ll wind up getting mugged and breaking someone’s hand. That’s neither here nor there, though.

Anyway.

You’re going to meet a boy.

Omg he’s so perfect and sweet and funny and smart and thoughtful and omg you’ve never had a boy that makes your heart feel like this.

IT’S THE FIRST WEEK OF SCHOOL. He’s great and at the time, everything you want, but my sweet girl, you are going to get bored. A young, butterfly like you should not be put in a cage this early! Go out there! Just be yourself and don’t get so intertwined with a boy who doesn’t have any other hobby besides you. Don’t be someone’s hobby, go find a hobby! Seriously, what do you do besides skate through community college classes, eat Papa Johns and booze? Find an interest! Join a club! F, Hannah! Get out there! You’re going to find out some bad news years later that will literally crush you and you’ll have to pick up the pieces and it’ll take a long, long time. When you get that feeling you shouldn’t be with him, go with it and end it.

Seriously, get out there! I don’t mean go bang a bunch of dudes, I mean go run! Ride a bike! Shit, just anything besides slamming down Busch Lites. You’re gonna get fat. Again, not sugar coating it for you (mmmmmmmm sugar), but you’re going to have to untag a lot of pics on Facebook because you look like an Iowa version of fat Kristie Alley. Just put down the 40 and hop on a trail.

You know who turns out to not suck so much? Your parents. Whaaaaat??? They’re not trying to ruin everything and be buzz kills in your life? No. They are going to help you out in literally every aspect in your life. They’re going to fund your school, rent and be there at 3 am when you’re bawling because of the boy you’re with. They’re your best friends. They understand you more than you know. They honestly want what’s best for you and will give up anything in their lives to help you out. Quit being so selfish and open up to them and be nice. They’re going to bend over backwards for you. Your mom is going to go through some things that will effect everyone and you’ll take it hard. Chin up, darling. She’ll need you.

Your brother is pretty cool too and is going through his own junk, but he’s the man and he will also be one of your best friends. He won’t beat up dudes you like, but sit and make you laugh till you cry. He’s good stuff. And he’ll lend you $1000 for a class (pay him back. It’s been like 3 years.)

Anyway, this has probably been a lot for you to take in. Your life isn’t awful, in fact it’s wonderful. It’s wonderful because of all of this stuff you’ll go through. You’re going to have times when you have no idea what to do, and that’s okay. Take your time and think about things. Go with your gut. (Lose that gut, but go with the metaphorical gut.) Keep the good people close and lose the bad ones. You know who they are. Take a step back to appreciate what you have instead of trying to keep up with everyone else. Be you. You’ve got some nifty things about you that you should run with. You’re gonna be alright, kid. Just shut up every once in a while and listen to those who are smarter than you.

I love you, you whimsical girl, but you’ve got a lot to learn.

-25 year old Hannah

PS- you’re gonna have 2 cats. They’re cool, but seriously keep it as a slow play.

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