Seemingly unlucky in love, am I better off with a canine companion than a man in my life? After spending Thanksgiving alone (by choice) I hopped in the car and headed to the Everglades for a couple of days with my dog in tow. Hours spent driving meant idle time which always gets my mind churning.
Am I too Picky? Or Am I Broken?
My mind kept circling back to the question of, “Why am I still single?”
Sure, I was married for a few years but that was over a decade ago. In that time since, I have known people who have gone through two marriages or have teenage children. Me? I have been treading water in a lonely lake supposedly filled with plenty of fish, yet, I come up empty. I even wrote this post on reasons to date a female solo travel blogger.
Maybe I’m too picky. Very few guys of interest have come along when I “least expected it.” When I thought they would lead to something, they’ve ended in dead ends where I’ve always had my heart broken.
Or, maybe I am just broken which makes me undesirable. And, if this is the case, I do not know how I am broken in order to fix it.
But I digress. Last year I met a different kind of love online. Although challenging, Radcliff has been a joy in my life. In my post-Thanksgiving idle time of feeling sorry for myself, I decided to flip my way of thinking. I decided to think about how lucky I am to at least have a canine companion and be grateful for the other positive things in my life.
Answering the question of why a dog is better than a man in my life, I am rationalizing it these ways:
I love cooking because it’s a stress and anxiety reliever (I also like eating good food). Cooking is also a way to express feelings for someone and I would love to cook for a boyfriend.
If I want to experiment in the kitchen, I can bake dog treats with fun cookie cutters or make dog food from scratch.
I would love to hop in a car with a guy and explore wherever the road leads, whether it’s an hour-getaway or a weeklong trip.
I get to stop when I want, where I want, and don’t have anyone criticizing my driving! Traveling with a dog has also changed my road trips and has allowed me to experience attractions, restaurants and hotels I probably would not have discovered without a dog.
Obviously, I enjoy solo travel but so much of it is because I do not have someone else to travel with and if I did not go solo, most likely I would not be going anywhere. Traveling with someone is enjoyable especially because it splits the trip planning and navigating.
I cannot always take Radcliff with me and need to leave him with a pet sitter. It’s a warm and fuzzy feeling seeing him so excited when picking him up from the pet sitter. I know at least someone missed me when I was gone. Sure, I need to pay for a pet sitter but at least I don’t have the added expense of someone else on the road with me.
I love giving gifts, it’s another way I can express myself. Especially during the holidays, I’m reminded that having a dog is less expensive than dating someone. I mean, I don’t need to spend a lot on gifts, if any, for my dog (and cats). Plus, whatever I give my dog, I know he will like it and do not need to worry about saving the receipt to exchange it in case I gave him the wrong color or something.
Being a blogger/influencer means having photos of me doing fun things and many of my fellow bloggers have “Instagram boyfriends/husbands,” those significant others who know it is their duty to hold off on eating until every plate of food is photographed and when to snap the perfect moment of their significant other blogger/influencer.
It would sure be a heck of a lot easier having someone taking my photos but, I am mastering the perfect selfie and learning to be creative in my shots. Plus, I can have a cute dog in my photos.
I like to say I inherited my grandfather’s colorful vocabulary. A canine will not judge when I cuss like a sailor, or a Coast Guardsmen.
You know, that stuff adults do to show affection toward one another. Okay, you got me here because a dog is not necessarily better than a man when it comes to intimacy. However, a dog is good at snuggling, hogging the bed, snoring, and waking me up when he needs to pee at o’dark-thirty.
Yeah, I know, this part is sexist but it is really nice having someone fix things that need repairing in my home. Or, keeping tabs on my car.
Again, I don’t think a dog is better but at least it means I’m supporting the local economy. If I cannot fix something, or find someone to fix it for me, I hire someone to do so.
Knight in Shining Armor
I’m envious of those hubby huggers (women on the back of motorcycles), couples who boat and fish, and spending weekends exploring various events.
I used to think someday I’d meet a guy who would have all sorts of big boy toys and want to share experiences with me but I have given up on that. If I want to have access to any of those things, or anything, I need to make it happen. Being a dog-parent does not necessarily mean I will gain access to these specific things but it opens a whole new, pet-themed world. Change and new experiences are good, right?
Ugh. I’ve had quite the health ride over the past 18 months with two surgeries and a broken ankle. Physically and emotionally, it would have been really nice to have a partner to help me recover but having a dog has helped my recovery by getting me outside and moving. It has been challenging walking a dog after a hysterectomy and a broken ankle but without taking care of him, I would have been Slugarella longer.
I will live longer as a single person with a dog! According to research by Scientific Reports, having a dog can reduce a single person’s risk of cardiovascular death and chance of a heart attack is lower, too.
Prince Charming or Paws Charming?
Will a two-legged Prince Charming be part of my life? I’m trying to remain optimistic but there are no guarantees in life. Darn those childhood fairy tales! Rather than sitting around and waiting, I will continue moving forward and living my life with Paws Charming.