Steve Schappell-My Blog

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Going the Distance and doing a Hookup

Well, I really thought it might work out.  My first relationship since my divorce lasted 5 months and lived 1.5 hours away.  Ultimately one of the factors that ended it was the distance.  I had a recent dating experience that lasted 4 dates and they live 1.5 hours away.  In that instance, to paraphrase her recent email, Logistically we're doomed.
It looks like I will need to shorten my distance from home next time.
In the dates I have had since the divorce, I have had an age swing from 36 to 48, that’s a 12-year difference.  Age is just a number, I understand and it felt great for a then 44-year old to have someone interested in them who were 8 years younger.  Generally speaking, the older they are, the older their kids are and in that maybe more flexibility.
It looks like I may want to tighten up my age range a little bit.

Some of my dates have been almost my height; while with others have been downright short.
It looks like I may want to stay within a certain height range

I could continue, but allow me to break this down further and explain where I am going:

LOCATION/DISTANCE: 50 miles or less, or no more than an hour away
AGE:  Range would be 39-49, based on age of kids and other factors
HEIGHT:  Above 5’-4” preferred
HAIR/EYES:  Does not matter
BODY: prefer thin, athletic or average
ETHNICITY: Caucasian preferred
RELIGION: Christian, not other religion or non-religious
POLITICS: No preference
EDUCATION: Prefer college level or beyond.  Hard to exclude if you did not attend college
INCOME: Tied to Education, but not always
JOB: No preference
SMOKE: Must be a no
HAS KIDS: Not a problem, most people in the above age range do

Now before you think it….The TITLE of this Blog is not about hooking up or going the distance in a physical sense.  Shame on you…..

No, this is a lead in to what I promised I would talk about, the two dating sites I am currently on.  And I am starting with the lesser of the two in terms of size and variety,

The above characteristics are part of every profile on this site.  I listed what my preferences are for someone I am looking for.  I have my characteristics listed on my profile page.  (Where I live, height, eye color, body type, etc) 

My next post will introduce you to the world of and some of the adventures I have had on there….stay tuned.

Lonely Weekend

For starters, this is NOT an “I am so depressed that you should be concerned about me” blog post.  Far from it.  This is a post making an observation about the way I feel sometimes.

It’s a feeling that I know others can relate to because some of you are my readers…

Now, there are a lot of things I enjoy about being a single and a single dad
-A rotating schedule with the kids and the ability to see them often; have time together with just them, and our summer vacations together
-I have my own house
-I have freedom to come and go
-I don’t report to anyone
-I have alone time

Like most things, there’s an upside and a downside.  I’ve mentioned some of the upside.  Now for the downside.  There are times I get lonely.

This weekend is one of those times.  I work on Saturday and Sunday, so I am not alone all the time.  I don’t have my kids this weekend, but have no plans either. 

I belong to some singles groups (DayHikers, Culinary Extroverts, Singles Soiree, Harrisburg Social Club), but there are no events going on tonight or Sunday.  Some friends are on vacation, but those friends are either married or away with their kids.  I am not seeing anyone, so there is no one special in my life right now.

There is a large fireworks display outside of Reading, PA that I was originally looking forward to.  I asked someone to go and they appreciated the offer, but cannot attend.  My kids have plans and just spend 9 days with Dad on vacation.  I don’t want to go myself so….
There is a singles dance tonight, but most attending are older than I am so…

I will probably clean out my car, start some painting at home, ride my bike and everything will be fine.

But I get lonely.  I never walk alone.  God is there to comfort me when feeling this way.  I know I have two great kids, some good friends, a nice place….etc.  But, I still get lonely.  These are the times when I ask myself if there will ever be someone special that I can share my life with again.  And then it passes and I am fine.

Surprisingly, I am human after all (that was a joke) and know that if I am patient, be true to myself, don’t shut out my friends, work hard and keep the faith that one day I won’t feel lonely again.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Intimacy: More than meets the eye

Oops, I borrowed from the "Transformers" in my Title today....Saw the latest movie last week and seemed appropriate for this topic. 

For those of you who know me, I enjoy words, wordplay, definitions and writing.  Funny since I write a Blog.  For this topic, let's start with the definition of intimacy. 

in·ti·ma·cy  (–noun, plural -cies.)

1. the state of being intimate.
2. a close, familiar, and usually affectionate or loving personal relationship with another person or group.
3. a close association with or detailed knowledge or deep understanding of a place, subject, period of history, etc.: an intimacy with japan.
4. an act or expression serving as a token of familiarity, affection, or the like: to allow the intimacy of using first names.
5. an amorously familiar act; liberty.
6. sexual intercourse.
7. the quality of being comfortable, warm, or familiar: the intimacy of the room.
8. privacy, especially as suitable to the telling of a secret: in the intimacy of his studio.

There are 8 definitions for one simple word.  One word that when heard usually brings up #6 first in your mind.

A previous post said I started dating.  I'm not...4 great dates and an understanding of the differences between us that developed quickly.  She wished me well in finding "Miss Right."  I said there is no such thing.  No one person can embody everything another person is looking for.  And maybe like you, I am looking for someone who has a some similar qualities, values and things in common as myself, and moreover, I am looking for someone to become intimate with.

Let's get Definition #6 out of the way right off the bat.  Physical intimacy and/or sex is easy.  What I mean is as humans, we are programmed for sex, to procreate and for pleasure.  Unfortunately, in some relationships the physical IS the relationship and all that intimacy is associated with.  There is so much more I believe that it should be.

Again, by disclaimer, since this is my blog, these are my opinions and you may not agree.  I understand and respect that.  I hope to inform, educate, make you laugh, cry occasionally and think.

So onto the rest of the definitions:

#1: The state of being intimate.  To me I see this best in married couples in it for the long haul.  2 people working together to raise a family, or to grow old together.  Someone that finishes the others thoughts.  A symbiotic relationship where each gives and takes and makes the other person stronger.

#2:  Close, familiar and affectionate or loving relationship.  This is what God wants with each of us.  This is what a personal relationship with Jesus is all about.  On a human level, a compelling need by our actions to show another person that we love them, care about them and want to be close to them.  I do believe that love is an action, not a feeling.  (I mean you feel something, yes, but by showing it, living it, you make it real)

#3: A close association or deep understanding... I really want to know someone, their likes and dislikes.  Their family and friends, the things in their life that made them who they are.  Getting to know someone so intimately over time that you almost become one.  

#4: An act or expression serving as a token of familiarity.  To allow the intimacy of first names, etc.  Nicknames, pet names, fall into this category.  A kiss in the morning, opening her door, or a inside joke...Things that two people share together.

#5: An amorously familiar act.  Very similar to #6.  Does not necessarily mean a sexual act. 

#7: The quality of being comfortable, warm, or familiar.  Where two people can be comfortable with each other in almost any situation.  Being familiar with each others strengths, loving them at 6 am with no makeup, relaxed and making it look easy.

#8: Privacy.  Some things are meant to be shared only between two people.  I want that privacy where I can tell my best friend anything and know it will not go anywhere.

Put together in a combination over time, true intimacy forms strong bonds.  When a relationship is built on a good foundation, friendship can develop where intimacy can flourish and grow on many levels.  That's something I am looking for as I continue to move forward.

The swimming pool....

Wow, apparently my Holiday blog post hit a nerve.  I received emails, FB postings, and messages.  Thank you for the response....

Funny how God uses things like an afternoon at the pool for some perspective.  I took my daughter and a friend she had overnight to the local pool for an afternoon.  I wanted to get some sun and tan.  (Got some sun alright...medic) and to relax and read.  We got there at 1....I read at 5 and left at 6.

While there, and in not a depressed, but quiet state, I ran into friends from the soccer club, a former neighbor from my last residence, someone I had not seen in over a year came over to talk and it made for a nice afternoon of conversation and catching up.

I also now have some calls to return to 2 dear friends of mine who were checking in on me.  Trust me, I am OK, but glad to know that you care.  Now if one of you were only not so darn far away....


With the exception of Christmas (birth of Jesus and well Christmas) and Easter (celebrate resurrection of Jesus), most holidays for me are not always happy circumstances.

If you believe the ads, TV, and radio, holidays are family time get togethers, picnics and parties with friends.  Everyone has a place to go and is always happy.  What about the families who are divorced?  Single people with not many friends, etc.  For home people, the holidays can be depressing.  Now, I am not depressed, but wanted to elaborate more.

I have a small family, 2 parents, myself and 2 kids.  I have no brothers and sisters.  My cousins are across the state or in other states.  There are no reunions or get togethers during the year.  In fact, when I see them it is either for a wedding for a funeral.  Now it was different growing up, there were parties my parents attended and there were friends my age.

When I was married, holidays were fun.  We would host a party or be invited to one and the kids always had friends around.

Fast forward to today.  Being a single father, with sharing of my kids, no girlfriend, or close friends that live near to me, keeps options limited.  My parents live in a 50+ development of new homes and celebrate the 4th of July, for example, with a picnic at their "clubhouse" with other residents.  I could attend, but there would be no one of my age to be with. 

The next part is not meant as a pity party.  I am the only one to blame for this and would really like suggestions on how to correct it....  I do not get invited to many parties.  In part, because I have isolated myself in some areas after the divorce and understand that most parties or events are usually couples, or families with kids, not a single person attending to mooch some food and drink.  Do you have any suggestions on how I can be more approachable or someone who could at least be asked more?

Now in context for this weekend, I have my kids and was invited to "June Birthday's Celebration" tonight.  My kids were not interested since they would not know any one there and at their ages, 11 and 15, would rather invite someone along, but I don't always want to impose on the host of the event.  We will look for fireworks to attend on Sat and Sun night and be at the house on Monday..

Maybe things will change again one day, but for now I wanted you to know that now everyone is always excited about the next holiday that comes along.