Redefining My Ideal Life

I’ve always pictured myself with a beautiful man about my age with a body that proved he worked hard to keep it up. This ideal man would be such a charmer that everyone I knew who met him would compliment me on what a catch I managed to reel in. I imagined him without children. He’d want so very much for me to carry his and we would raise and rear them together. I pictured that ours would be the traditional family unit. We’d live in a beautiful house that had a sizeable front yard and a backyard big enough to keep a swing set and monkey bars and anything else our children would want added to their playground. That was my ideal life.

It was in the summer of 2016 when I started to realize that that may not have been the life meant for me (“My Inner Battle” 7.22.16). In retrospect, I believe now that I was in desperate denial when I started my search for a husband (“The Husband Project” 3.30.16)– rushing the process just so that I could have something I felt I deserved. But what I didn’t take into consideration was the idea that my ideal life was not going to be some modern day fairytale. I now know that marrying someone quickly just to start a family would not necessarily equal happiness. I’m glad I let go of my husband search and continued my search for love. But again, I think I was short sighted— still only looking for that “perfect” man. What I met were men who didn’t really want to settle down or have more kids, and one who didn’t even live in this state. I tried telling myself that maybe they would change their minds or come to see how perfect I could be as a mate. Deep down, however, I knew that again, I was trying to create a fantasy out of reality.

Then, suddenly my gentleman was presented to me in a most unexpected way (“An Unexpected Interest” 7.8.17). Yes, there were feelings of doubt and uncertainty but I wanted to trust the situation. You’ll recall that a major concern of mine was his age. And he didn’t come in the physical package I’d always envisioned but that didn’t matter because I found him attractive anyway. That was important to me.

He told me from the beginning he didn’t want kids yet I told him from the beginning that I did. Why are we still together then? Well, we’ve kept the lines of communication open with conversations about what we were willing or not willing to settle for. We’ve come to respect each other for that.

Right now I’m pursuing my wish to have a child and he has made the decision to stand by me in full support.

When I first started this blog, I questioned why I was not yet married to the love of my life, living in a beautiful house with our beautiful children. That was my ideal life. Now I understand and accept that perhaps I wasn’t meant to live that life.

My ideal life has become getting to know myself through my search for love. It’s become recognizing when a good thing has come into my world. My ideal life is understanding that I can most certainly have everything that I’d ever wanted when it comes to having my own family. Yet I now realize that that ideal life may come in a different package and through unconventional ways…and I am so ready to accept that.

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The Marriage-Minded Man

Upon learning that I had a blog about my dating experiences, a male colleague of mine (let’s call him Corey) expressed interest in reading it so I gave him my business card and told him I was curious about his thoughts on it. Usually when I tell people about my blog they either read one or two posts or they don’t read it at all and never speak of it again. I believed Corey when he told me he’d read it but I certainly didn’t expect this colleague of mine to read all 98 of my posts in a two-hour period! Oh yes, ladies and gentlemen. I told him about it on Thursday and on Friday he was ready to discuss them all with me!

I thought to myself that either Corey must have found it extremely interesting or he was interested in me. Well, after discussing some of my posts with him, I began to understand that it was something entirely different.

Based on what I’ve seen, Corey seems to be somewhat of a rarity. He’s a thirty-something year old man who wants to–and is looking to– settle down and start a family. In fact, it seems as though everything he does is a deliberate action in preparation for his future family. Example? The man has refused to fall in line with the rest of our assimilating culture when it comes to buying a smart phone. His reason? Why spend so much on a smart phone now when he can use that money to save for a family?

It is my belief that Corey read my blog not for entertainment but as research. I’m a single woman who had declared to the world (okay, maybe declared it to my few readers) my wish to be married and have children. To him, I was a resource.

He questioned me about my online dating experiences. He wanted to know what kind of guy I’d give a chance to out of a myriad of men who approach me on a dating site. He wanted to know what kind of guys I wouldn’t give a chance to and why. He asked me questions about the profile picture. He asked me what traits I like seeing in someone’s profile and what would I want a man to know about me.

When I asked Corey why ask me all these questions, he responded that he wanted to know how a girl would think about her dating prospects because he’s about to start dating again. Instinctively, I said, “But I’m just one girl!” What I failed to see was that to him, I was more than just one girl. Sure he understood that my experience is very unique to me, but I was a girl who was looking for a relationship just like he was. So to him, whatever I had to say was valuable in his search for the woman he wanted to marry.

I’ve never met a man who was so focused on marriage as Corey seems to be. In fact, it has been my belief that the thought of marriage scares young men away. I thought that all a young single man wanted to do was date and have fun and should that girl come upon him that he knew was great wife-material, that’s when he would start to think seriously about settling down. But I never met someone who was actually on a hunt for a wife; someone who has plans for his financial future with his woman before he even meets her.

Yet there he was, in the flesh- an actual, existing, marriage-minded young man!

For all you hopeful gals out there, younger than me or not, the fact that one man like that is out there means that there are more. We just have to be patient, keep searching, and continue to believe that one day, our paths will cross with these marriage-minded men. And when they do, it may not be a fairytale ending, but it will definitely be the beginning of something new. And that’s always a good thing.


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Honoring Ourselves

A friend of mine (let’s call her Erica) recently told me about her experience with a man who she felt led her on. She had been seeing him on and off for a few years and only recently learned that he had been dishonest with her. Though he had broken up with the mother of his daughter, he couldn’t promise Erica anything as far as a relationship was concerned. He wanted to take things slowly with her and if she brought up the topic of his situation, he’d get upset.  Erica knew something wasn’t right with her guy and actually broke it off with him several times. But one phone call from him would reel her back in. Upon digging further, she learned that his ex-girlfriend was actually his wife!! They didn’t just have one child but they had two! Erica was deeply hurt and confused by all of this. She couldn’t believe that she fell for all of his lies and excuses.

In cases like this, we women feel like we suffer so much from the lies and games that men play. But I wonder if we invite those very lies and games into our experience. I told Erica that next time, she has to be firm from the very beginning and tell the man she’s dating exactly what she wants out of the relationship. However, can it be said that if Erica already knew exactly what she wanted, she would not have attracted such a man to her? In other words, once you know what you want and you carry yourself as such, the right man will be presented to you and you won’t have to demand anything because he will be the right man. And, in knowing what you want, you will not be fooled by any kind of deceit because you simply won’t stand for any foolishness.

Well, contradicting this idea, my friend Erica did tell the man what she wanted at the beginning of and throughout the relationship. Yet, when presented with what he was willing to give her, she did not honor what she had originally told him she wanted. She thought that he’d eventually change and I think that so many women out there believe the same thing. I’ve been in a few relationships where I not only thought the guy would change, but I thought I’d be the one to help him change. Ha! Men pretty much stay true to themselves. They are usually up front with what they are willing to give but we always think they’ll change because we know that we, as women, easily change what we’re willing to put with. We need to start honoring ourselves by honoring what we want out of a relationship.

I think it goes without saying that as soon as something happens in a relationship that does not sit right with you, it needs to be addressed immediately, whether it’s through a mature conversation with the man or a decision to move on. Trust me, I know how hard it can be to communicate feelings about what may be wrong in a relationship. However, it is a woman’s right to question and discuss and explore in order to make an informative decision. That’s how many of us can avoid getting hurt. We sometimes walk on eggshells, being careful of our words and behavior, that we forget about our own happiness. (That’s what I did with the Puerto Rican!) But I think as soon as we feel the need to walk on eggshells, the issue must be addressed. It will save us from heartache; and addressing the issue will help us to continue to honor our feelings and honor what we want out of a relationship.

Obviously, I’m not writing as an expert; I’m writing out of logic- what seems to make sense. When feelings are involved, it seems like we throw sense out the window. Let’s try to hold on to our senses. We need to keep reminding ourselves about what we feel will make us happy. And if that thing is not happening in the relationship, we need to honor ourselves by walking away (and staying away!)- no matter how painful we feel it may be.


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My Revelation

If you spend any time with me you will learn very quickly that it’s very hard for me to make decisions. Whether it is the choice of ice cream, a meal, or what outfit to Grey dresswear, my indecisiveness becomes comical to the patient person or very annoying to the impatient. You can imagine that this indecisiveness does spill in to the very important decisions in my life– like my decision to get married and have the twins I always thought I wanted.

Those of you who follow my blog already know that back in March of this year, I decided to follow a 12 step program that would lead me to my husband. And the reason I had decided to do this was because I just knew that I wanted to get pregnant and have twins very soon. Never wanting to have children outside of wedlock, I’ve always envisioned having a traditional family unit. However, with each step I took with the program, whenever it involved including others into my husband search, I dramatically stalled. It was always as if I was waiting for the perfect moment of inspiration to actually perform the step I was up to. Example, you ask? Step 6: Promoting myself and my brand by sending letters (emails) to everyone I knew. The purpose was to tell them what a wonderful catch I am and to ask them if they knew anyone they could set me up with. The thought of it terrified me: putting myself out there like that? No way! What would they say? (who cares!) What if they thought I was a loser? (so what?!)

So every day, I sat myself down in front of the computer, trying to force myself to look into who to send these emails to. I was forcing myself to do something I didn’t want to do under the guise of stepping outside of my comfort zone. What I was not doing was looking at the underlying reasons why I did not want to do what I was forcing myself to do. I mean, if I took finding a husband seriously, would I really hesitate in completing the steps required? When I finally looked at the underlying reasons, I realized something new about myself.

I started to question my wants. Do I really want a husband? Or is it that I just want a lover? Do I even want children anymore? Am I emotionally ready to care for children and put them first? All of these questions and more were going on in my mind. All of these questions left me with answers of yes, no, and maybe. My thoughts and ideas, my wants– they were all over the place. And then I realized, suddenly, that I was doing the same thing with these ideas and thoughts that I’ve been doing all of my life. I was being indecisive.

Makes you happyDiscussing these concerns with my sister, I told her that I just don’t know what I want anymore. I have always wanted to be married and have a family but at this age, it doesn’t even matter if I get married anymore. I could easily start dating someone, get pregnant and if I never get married, I think I will really be emotionally OK. I don’t need the engagement ring and the bachelorette party. I don’t need the wedding dress. I don’t even think I need to say the words I do in front of dozens of people just to prove that I am finally successful in a relationship. My sister made me realize that all I want to be is happy, in whatever form that may come in. If I am with the man that I love from head to toe and I know– I am certain— of his love for me, then that’s enough. I don’t need him to bend down on one knee. I don’t need those papers that say husband-and-wife.

I realize that all I want to be is happy. And what an important revelation! I would’ve never come to this had I not started reading the book Find a Husband After 35. That book has put me on a journey I did not even realize I was going to go on. I thought my journey was going to be about finding my husband. But my journey in the last few months has been really forcing me to dig deep into my head, dig deep into my thoughts and really come up with this beautiful idea that happiness is all I ever wanted. And if that happiness leads to marriage and a family, I’ll take it! If it leads to children and no man in the picture, I’ll take that too! If happiness comes in the form of a series of lovers who enhance my experience of life, I will accept it. That’s all any of us really want. I don’t know if in 5 months I will again change my mind. Perhaps in 5 years I may be wishing to be married. I just don’t know. All I know is that right now, I just really want to be happy. Of this I am certain.

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The Twins Festival and Dating

13872735_10208405879039017_5101840766776167996_nLast weekend, my sister and I embarked on our yearly pilgrimage to Twinsburg, Ohio, where the largest amount of twins and multiples gather to celebrate the genetic anomaly that is us. This was our twelfth year and I have to say that for us, it never gets old.
I found out about the Twins Days twin festival 12 years ago as I was doing research for a proposed book that never amounted to anything. I wanted to publish a book about the unique experience of being a twin. When I told my sister about the festival, she thought it sounded corny. I was more curious than she was and I don’t remember if I begged her to go but I know that she agreed to go with me under the condition that I book the flight, make the hotel reservation, and register for the festival. I was excited!
When we arrived, to say that we were overwhelmed with the amount of twins we saw gathered in one place is truly an understatement! There were so many of them! It was like a freak show! Ah, but what a wonderful freak show it turned out to be. The feelings of warmth and acceptance quickly enveloped us as each set of twins we met hugged us when they learned it was our first twins event. We were no longer virgins of Twins Days!
Being fraternal twins with differences in every single feature of our faces, we were surprisingly mistaken for being identical by twins who were SO identical that they could have been the same person! All twins wore the same exact clothing and everything from nail polish to ankle bracelets were the same for each twin. We were not prepared for that. We had the same color clothing but in different styles and apparently, that wasn’t enough. We were not there to celebrate our own individual identities. No, that weekend was to celebrate how much we were like our twin. My sister and I walked away from that experience vowing that the following year, we’d be prepared with the same clothing, jewelry and hairstyle- down to the very last detail. And we were- and we have been since!

Twins and Singlehood


Through the questions these 49 year old twins asked us, we could tell they were looking for twin mates. We felt like we were being interviewed!

Many people have asked me if I’ve ever met a potential significant other during the festival weekend. The answer is a resounding YES! There are just SO many good-looking twin men that we’ve come across. Some of them had absolutely no interest in us. Some of them flirted with us but that’s as far as it went. We met a set of twins, I believe during our second year, where one of them was interested in us (we didn’t know which one of us he liked) while his twin brother found a few sets of other twins he’d rather hang out with. The poor guys were in conflict all weekend. There was one twin my sister met up with outside of the festival months later but nothing ever happened with that. There was one twin who expressed an interest in me and we started to communicate but as luck would have it, he lives in Canada and is at least 12 years my junior. There was another twin who would come to New York for business and he’d contact me to hang out. I always had a great time with him. He’s such a great looking guy and he was a lot of fun but he was engaged to be married at the time so nothing ever happened with that.


These guys I think were in their early 30s. They were so much fun!

It must be emphasized that the purpose of the twins festival is NOT to date other twins. It just so happens (like with any gathering of a large amount of people) that there are twins who form long lasting friendships and romantic relationships that lead into marriage. (Mind you, there are twins who get downright naughty but some have found love too.) Going to the twins festival each year has never been about hooking up for us. It’s always been about connecting with people with whom we share something very special: our twinship.


We immediately clicked with these 30-something year old twins from the Netherlands.


These boys were easily in their early 20s but they were so adorable!

My sister and I look half our age yet we speak with a clarity that comes with age and education. So we seem to attract boys as young as 14 to men in their 60s. (Yes, one year, when we were 29 years old, a boy approached us on the festival grounds asking if he and his twin could talk to us. To find out our ages he said, “We’re 14 so…” He trailed off, expecting us to finish his sentence with the admission of our age. We politely told him we were way too old for them and we parted ways.) But I feel that the 40 something year old twins that we do meet are already married and have children. So that leaves the 30-somethings- who seem to be the partying kind and not really interested in long-tem relationships yet. Mind you, this is just an assumption, of course!
This year, we talked to a lot of male twins our age who finally learned that we were not in our 30s. (For some reason, a lot of people asked us how old we are this year– more so than in other years.)

Who knows what will happen. All we know is that every time we go to the twins festival, it just gets better and better. There are the twins we make sure we have dinner with each year, others we usually sing karaoke with. There are twins we always flirt with and take pictures with. It’s an amazing experience. I gotta tell you, I’d prefer to marry a twin because he’d understand the bond my sister and I share better than a singleton (someone who does not have a twin). But whether he’s a twin or not, I just want to find someone wonderful.

Read more! Read my 12.05.15 post: “Can Being a Twin Affect Romantic Relationships?”

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