So here we are, May 2006, Nashville Tennessee; I have just arrived in this city and I am living all by myself in my very own apartment (prior to this I had spent 3 years sharing a living space with my brother in Auburn, prior to that I lived for 1 yr back in my parents home after I finished college, and before that I had had a roommate one time in college, Sara and Trent.....the 3 of us lasted a summer together; Sara and I knew we were both meant to live alone).
I had left Auburn without a whole lot of preparation or thought given to the idea of moving to Nashville. Prior to this the plan had been for me to stay in Auburn and live and work at EAMC on the psychiatric unit I had been working on during nursing school and continue living with my brother for a couple of years. But a series of unfortunate events which I won't go into at this time helped to fuel my desire to get out of there sooner rather than later. I had pondered the idea of moving to Nashville before but was planning to put it off a few years. So off I went! Of course everyone I first met in Nashville presumed that my spontaneity for just up and and moving must be because I'm a music artist. Imagine their surprise when I explained that no, I was not in the music industry, I just needed a life!! Seriously, I had no dating life to speak of in Auburn; everyone my age was either in graduate studies (which I was not) or already married. I was the outcast!!
So let me just preface by saying that my first year in Nashville is somewhat of a blur to me now. I didn't spend it completely drunk and I certainly wasn't doing any drugs. I've never been arrested or anything jerry springer-like. But I did burn the candle at both ends. As it turns out, I had a lot, and I mean a lot of get-up and go that hadn't been let out yet. I assume it was because at Miami we were very focused on our academic studies; yes we got out, yes I did stupid things while there but at the end of the day, I studied and so did everyone else. I had a strong desire to tryout for the Real World during my Miami days but I never did so because I was afraid of the girl that would emerge and I was afraid my parents would ground me forever and not pay my tuition or my miscellaneous items that they so generously paid for. True confession. But hey, whatever motivates your kids to stay in school and do a good job I say; even if it is the fear of being cut-off financially! So I came to Nashville and I was like a loose cannon firing all over the place. I had done some living while at Miami but then I spent four years, count them, four long years pent up like a teenage boy in an all-boys school!
I suddenly went from speaking to no one my age and not having any dates to being a completely wild woman full of numbers and addresses! I was so wild from May 2006 until the late Summer/Fall of 2007 that I don't remember it. Again, not because I was drunk all the time, although I did do my fair share of promoting the drinking establishments here in this city, but because I was burning the candle at both ends and they were burning very quickly. It was like I was on a mission with two goals: to see how far I could go and how much I could self destruct and to experience this entire city in one year.
I was fortunate enough to have a very nice girl move into the apartment across from me. She was quiet, she stayed up late, and she liked to talk. So we got along well. Throughout this whole year she did not approve of my being out of control; but in some way, I think she understood why I had to do it even though I at the time did not understand at all, nor did I see it as a negative in my life. I am going to have to give her props for letting me be me, for expressing her distaste for my "adventures" (she was keeping it real :) but for not ever leaving me stranded or closing the door on me for the way I was living. We went to the pool almost every morning that summer (I worked 3p-11p). I would get up and hike/jog the trails at Percy Warner (until her mother scared me with the stories of girls that kept getting kidnapped and raped from the park!), come home and eat a snack, we would go to the pool, i would quickly shower and then head to work. Once I got home from work I would walk the 2 feet to her door and we would sit on her porch, she drinking tea, me drinking sometimes tea and sometimes Jack Daniels and we would talk for hours until one of us decided it was time to call it a day and I would walk the two feet back to my door and get up and life would carry on.
Thankfully this girl across the hall also went out; although not as often as I would have liked! I wanted to go out Friday, Saturday and several nights after getting off of work at 11pm. When I say I finally fulfilled my dating needs, I mean that I finally and completely fulfilled my dating needs that first year. I dated short guys, tall guys, skinny guys, fat guys, bible thumpers, atheists, smart guys, dumb guys; you name it, and I dated him! In between all of these guys when I had moved to Nashville I had had a crush, okay, maybe a little more than that, on a guy I had known for a while, even while I was at Auburn that I knew from here in Nashville. And that was it's own screwed up chapter in a book.. This was a guy I learned a lot from. I learned to not force a relationship that isn't there. I learned that you must have similar beliefs and value systems (yes, despite my wildness I still had values, deep down, somewhere inside of me!), similar life goals and things that you expect from the other person and that YOU CAN'T LEAD A HORSE TO WATER. I sat in a car with him for a few minutes at Centennial Park shortly after I moved here so he could fix something on my computer or something like that, it was my birthday that day, he had no idea, even though we had known each other for a couple of years. I spent that day entirely alone. Read between the lines Jennifer: He's just not that into you if he doesn't even know it's your birthday!
At any rate, I was trying to write about my first year here but I realized that I couldn't remember most of it so I went back looking through emails; there weren't many on my email account. I looked through facebook, apparently I wasn't a member. I hit the jackpot with MySpace!! LOL!! I had to have my password sent to me to unlock the darn account. My friend and old roommate Sara had written me about a month after I had moved to Nashville, "are you still seeing that guy?? Probably doesn't matter cause there are so many singles in Nashville." Wow, was she dead on or what? Who knew?
Did I mention that I even dated people outside of Nashville that year!? The girl across the hall and I, we had two guys (one that she knew in school) come up one weekend and the four of us went camping. I hit it off with the friend that the guy she knew brought with him. I ended up with a very painful bladder infection 2 days before they came to Nashville. While we were camping the night before we went rafting I kept experiencing a lot of pain in my lower abdomen and I kept thinking it was just that bladder infection, oh no it wasn't; yep, you guessed it, I started my period right then and there on that camping trip on top of the infection!!! Thank goodness both of those kind boys were nurses; not that they enjoyed or welcomed the visitor I had but they understood on a scientific level that it was beyond my control. And I won't even go into the events that happened as a result of that at this time, let's just say, I was definitely humiliated a couple of times that weekend. I was really into this guy; he was a nice guy but he lived in Mississippi. We had made arrangements and plans for me to visit. Then he suddenly had to do a class at work the weekend I was supposed to visit and then boom, out of nowhere he started dating this girl and got engaged and got married. Left again!!
At any rate (this is getting to be a long post) I dated a lot of guys in a very short time. One of which started out being called, McHockey but was then changed to McLovem' and Leavem'! We got a real kick out of that one! I had totally forgotten about that until my research today. I also dated a younger guy that bought this stupid, stupid car!! It wasn't like someone bought it for him and he should be grateful; it wasn't like he bought it used with the little money he had; no he outright bought a stupid stupid car!! I am starting to realize that the craziness of these boys is for another post; you will probably wet yourself laughing when I tell you about some of them. And I will have to tell you my story about going with a friend of mine to Cafe Coco for my 3rd and final time.......I will never ever go back to that place.
I promise my next blog will be more about how/ what got me to settle down and to be ready for Jon when he came into my life. I really will tell you. I just didn't realize how long this would be. Maybe I ramble too much or maybe there is just that much to tell, who knows. But......at the end of my year and a half of dating I was still not married, not even in a relationship!! Still coming in dead last!