Finding love and creating a new life, during a pandemic… especially after the age of 65 is a real curiosity for many people. How could this happen?
As a result, my recent blogs have prompted a lot of questions and comments. So, I thought I would group them by similar topics. Hopefully this will provide some of the “behind the scenes” thought processes and perhaps answer questions you may have had but were afraid to ask.
We’ll start with some of the easier questions and comments. The next blog will tackle some of the more personal, soulful and vulnerable topics.
1.One of my favorite relationship quotes goes something like this: “There is no perfect, only struggle. You have to find the person you want to struggle with.”
Aacckk – I’m sorry – but this sounds really awful to me. Why is it either/or? Perfection or struggle? To me, perfection is an illusion and struggle is a choice. Why would someone be interested in a relationship based on struggle? While every relationship may experience struggles – why would we choose that?
FYI – I know the person who wrote this comment and I know you’ve attended my workshops, so you already know this: What you focus on is what you get!
You may want to take a look at past relationships and see how “struggle” played a part in the success or upsets/shortcomings of those relationships.
Why not find the person with whom you can collaborate, share joy, love and laughter?
2. I wish there were more Jerrys in the world.
This is a really interesting comment. My first thought was that I wondered how many Jerrys I had missed over the years because I overlooked them. As I have mentioned, Jerry is so many things that I would never have considered in the past based on pre-conceived ideas and/or biases. How many people did I summarily dismiss due to my own bias or ignorance?
I have no doubt that there are a lot of great men (or partners) out there who we just haven’t noticed or given a chance.
My next thought was “who was I being,” that the Jerrys of the world would not be interested in or even notice me?” The reality is that many times, we may unknowingly be thinking, speaking or behaving in ways that exclude or repel the very thing that we want most in our lives.
I’m sure there were many times that I may have blamed men and/or made excuses for my own shortcomings rather than take an honest look in the mirror.
Consider this: are you being the kind of person who will attract the partner/lover you want? If you want a partner who is kind and caring, is that how you treat people – consistently? Are you ready to receive love, kindness and compassion? And are you really ready to offer love, kindness and caring to another person?
3. How did you deal with being independent and solo for so many years to now being with someone 24/7?
This is a great question because I’ve asked myself the same thing more than once!
I remember being in relationships where I had difficulty being with the same person for 24 or 48 or 72 consecutive hours! And now we’ve practically been attached at the hip for the past 9 months!
I think there are several factors that make it work.
One is that we have a lot in common and enjoy the same things and just like being together. We laugh A LOT and find the same things funny – big belly laughs with tears and almost-pee-in-your-pants laughter several times day.
Also, Jerry and I enjoy our private, quiet time. We may spend time reading or watching our favorite shows – separately. No guilt. No drama.
And truth be told, sometimes I need a “time out.” Believe me, this approach isn’t just for kids! Sometimes I find myself getting irritable or annoyed or critical/picky. You know that feeling when you’re on the verge of picking a fight over something really stupid and inconsequential? (I’m not the only one, am I?) It’s in that moment I’m learning to catch myself and say: “I think I need a time out” and go someplace quiet for however long it takes to clear out all that head-trash!
4.You have said you’re learning a lot from Jerry. What is Jerry learning from you?
I asked Jerry this question and here are his responses:
First, I’m learning that it’s possible to love and laugh and live fully again! I was miserable after my wife’s death. I tried travelling, taking up racquetball, walking the dogs and meeting people at the dog park. But I was just going through the motions. Now I have purpose and joy in my life.
I’m also learning to have fun while cooking….
Here is MY response to what he is learning from me…
Jerry is a professional cook and caterer. He was in food service and hospitality for decades and served dignitaries, celebrities and groups of 10 – 8000 people. Based on his experience, he prepares food with precision, accuracy, creativity and efficiency. He approaches our meals with the same intensity.
On the other hand, when cooking, I like to play loud music and dance, drink wine and talk to friends on Zoom! All at the same time.
Jerry is learning that it’s ok to dance to Chaka Khan or sexy-dance to Marvin Gaye’s “Let’s Get It On” while dicing the onions… and if the baguette gets a bit too crispy – it’s ok. (I dare you to listen to either of these songs and not want to dance or swoon a little!) He’s learning that it’s about the shared experience and having fun in the creation process. Our reputation isn’t at stake… No one is paying us… it doesn’t have to be perfect.
And right now, he’s cooking and dancing (kind of) to Bob Marley while I’m writing this blog! (How can you not love an old white guy trying to dance to Bob Marley?)
But old habits of a professional caterer can be hard to break. We “christened” our new grill and outdoor kitchen and made burgers for the work crew on their last day here. Jerry, the consummate caterer, provided a diagram so I would know where to put everything!
Marty Stanley, a national speaker author and coach, helps people and organizations reinvent, redesign and realign their futures. In addition to helping thousands of people for the past 4 decades, she’s reinvented her own life and business multiple times. If you’re looking for a change, don’t take your chances on a rookie! Martystanley@alteringoutcomes.com www.alteringoutcomes.com 816.695.5453