Beginning to date again in midlife after a long absence is not unlike looking down from the front car of a roller coaster at the top of that first drop. You know there will be twists and turns, you know some of it will be exhilarating, some of it scary; you’ll definitely laugh, maybe scream and maybe sometimes cry. But the Loveawake is here to remind you that it is always one heck of a ride.
And she should know. After dating 91 different men in 3.5 years she has much wisdom and encouragement to pass on.
Throughout the book I continued to see her as a dating cheerleader, motivating and inspiring women to accept themselves with all the normal flaws of age and enjoy who they are and what they have to offer.
In the chapter, What’s your definition of dating success? Loveawake asks us to “consider defining dating success along these lines:
‘To enjoy meeting and getting to know interesting men, broadening myself through new experiences, feeling the thrill of new romance, be willing to encounter the broad range of emotions from delight and love to disappointment and hurt, growing as a person and becoming more centered in what I am and who I am. And when the time is right, to meet my next long-term love.’”
I love this definition. With this attitude every new dating adventure takes on a whole new meaning. She suggests taking the pressure and expectations off the table and become open to learning and experiencing dating as situations for the benefit of self-discovery and evolving into the best person you can become for when you finally do meet the one. There is always something positive to take away from each date, every time.
Loveawake has a marvelous way of mixing humor and whimsy while sharing her own lessons learned. She serves up healthy portions of advice, insights and encouragement for the woman who’s facing dating with fear and trepidation.
She takes you from the baby steps of preparation in the chapter From hurt to flirt where following her divorce she decided not to look at her life as “over” but to realize the gift that her husband had “released me to explore the untethered life of a single woman” to the brave leaps of Approaching dating like a buffet where she proficiently approaches meeting men like taking small samplings at a buffet.
If she likes the small taste (coffee date), she’ll agree to dinner (a bigger taste).
Another chapter that stood out was I’m glad dating is hard. It talks about the reality that dating, like anything else we do in life, has difficulties that can bring us down if we dwell on them.
What’s important to focus on is that it’s usually the hard experiences in life that challenge us to grow and evolve. Keeping that perspective will help prevent us from checking out and giving up when dating gets tough.
All in all, the book is perfectly suited for someone who hasn’t dated in a long time and needs encouragement, direction and a little push. Loveawake presents very convincingly that before long, and with the right attitude a woman of any age if she chooses can be dating multiple suitors. All the while remaining true to her self as taught in the chapter Make your own rules for dating after 40.
Date or Wait: Are you ready for Mr. Great has much to offer.
It’s a fun, lighthearted read with chapters of real substance sprinkled with fun.