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Silver Sex Part One

by Annie Taylor 4 months ago in sexual wellness · updated 4 months ago
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My First Date in 35 Years

Silver Sex Part One
Photo by Priscilla Du Preez on Unsplash

I arrive early. I want to take my time finding a table, ordering my coffee, and calming my nerves. I navigate my way on crutches through the small coffee shop and find the perfect table. Facing the entrance yet camouflaged by pillars. I smooth my shirt and fuss with my scarf and hair. I check my face on my phone looking for nasal hair or food in my teeth. I look at the notes on my phone reading through my checklist. Hair - dried with hairdryer and smooth and wavy. Check. Shaved my legs for confidence. Check. Dusting of makeup and mascara so I look natural yet healthy. Check. V-neck shirt so the girls can peek but have a scarf so I feel comfortable. Check. I am good to go.

Backstory - I am 57, recently divorced from a decades-long marriage; abuse/cancer/rape survivor and have issues with codependency. This was my first date since 1985. Yeah, I mean decades. I wasn’t sure I wanted to date. Or anything with another man but my therapist kept encouraging me to put myself out there. I can hear her in my head “If you don’t shop, you don’t know what there is to buy. Or if you really want it. So shop.” So here I am. Shopping. From an app of all things. And trying to keep it from my kids because really, embarrassment much?

Calvin is - according to the app - 59, retired and his kids are living out of the house. Mine are too so bless them. On the app he looks tall and big like a cuddly teddy bear. He has a sweet smile in his photos and it’s only coffee. I am giving him 30 min and we will see where it goes.

I take a deep breath, sip my coffee and peruse my news apps. It is a sunny yet cold day and I haven’t been in a coffee shop since before the pandemic. I savor the hearty roast cooled with a hint of vanilla. Even if he no-shows, this is turning out to be a good morning.

By Fahmi Fakhrudin on Unsplash

“Ann?” I look up and there is Calvin. Kind of. Instead of an attractive older man that I knew from the photos, I am looking at a much older man who is heavier than indicated. He is also wearing that elderly man sport shirt, suit jacket combo that does not look clean. His pants are rumpled and stained. The entire ensemble is complete with orthotics. I see a generous dusting of dandruff on his shoulders. As he sits, there is a whiff of mustiness. The grandpa smell. I immediately know this isn’t going to work but perhaps I can make a friend.

He sits and the table is pushed towards me and I am now locked against the back of my bench. There is no room between me and the table - or him and the table. I obviously didn’t think this through.

By Thomas Dumortier on Unsplash

As he sits he asks about my crutch and I explain I am recovering from a broken leg. We chat and I ask about his work pre retirement and life after retirement. I bring all my charm. I am crushing it. I am not compromising myself or exaggerating or embellishing. I am sitting here wholly and authentically myself. If he doesn't like it - tough.

And then the alarm goes off on my phone. I explain that I have a tele appointment in fifteen minutes and we wrap up.

He says “You’re a lot.”

Excuse me?

By Sherise VD on Unsplash

I’m a lot. In my mind I scramble for what feels like hours - what the hell does that mean? I’m a lot. I’m not overly made up with nails and pouty lips. I’m asking for a commitment. I even paid for my own coffee. I asked about his life and held my own asking even about business. I was genuinely interested in his work. I’m a lot.

Ah. I am not what you want. This man needs a caretaker. A woman who will do his laundry and monitor his meds. With a 50s hair flip while she cleans the carpets. Nope, not for me. Did that and it was not my scene.

By CDC on Unsplash

Back out of my half second dive down the, I’m a lot rabbit hole, I look directly at him and say “Thank you. I am a confident woman.”

We stand and put our coats on, toss our coffee cups and do the awkward older person shuffle to the front door. He gentlemanly holds the door for me and we pause by my campervan parked in the front.

“You really do camp then don’t you.” He comments.

By Jake Stone on Unsplash

I ponder that comment. Why would I state in my profile if I didn’t do it? I ask myself but who knows who he has met in his search.

“Yup.” I spend a moment looking at it with him and he asks a few questions. There is a brief moment where I imagine him standing inside bent over in all of his 6’4” large length trying to wedge himself into the bathroom. Nope. I couldn’t even imagine sharing the Murphy bed with a man this large.

He bids me goodbye and I watch him shuffle off across the parking lot. I sit in my van and ease the side closed taking a moment to breathe slowly in and out. I am astonished at the tension in my chest that I didn’t notice. I take a self-inventory and then congratulate myself on my first date in 35 years.

Then the laughter comes. Really, I think. Did he really think a woman who on her profile states that she just completed a solo six-week camping trip would suddenly give it all up to check his meds?

Really?

This is going to be a wild ride. Or shopping trip. You choose the metaphor.

sexual wellness

About the author

Annie Taylor

Author, mother, grandmother, and former teacher - Annie Taylor has three decades of writing in a variety of forms. She has written manuals, speeches, books, and sales brochures. Annie travels the US in her RV obsessively writing.

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