Choosy Moms, Choose...

Does anyone remember that commercial? The peanut butter commercial?

Choosy moms choose JIF. JIF, the peanut butter brand, knew their value to the point where their gimmick line proved it.

If you are choosy, you will choose our brand.

When you are choosy, you just don't pick up the first offer. In the dating world, picking up the first offer doesn't allow you to see what else is presented, what else can be done, what else can fit. And coming from any bad breakup, bad marriage or bad divorce, I'm advising you - you are now choosing to be choosy.

As now a single mother, I get it. Standards go a long way in terms of meeting someone new. You have to go through the whole ordeal: the representative, the "getting to know you stage", the "is he the one?" or "am I the only one"? Just in the 5 years of dating my ex husband, marrying, divorcing and getting back on the dating scene, I realized a lot has changed. Online dating. Blind dating. The challenges of getting noticed in the store with a mask on. Too much going on out here.

So I choose to be picky, stingy and choosy. I also have a past where I can reflect on my how I chose before marriage, and what I would do differently.

One, I am now unapologetic. No more hiding what and who I am, nor what and who I want. Before, I allowed what presented tell me what I need. Going through a difficult divorce, I have now found my voice and I found what I really need. Voicing our needs and wants without apologizing or even feeling sorry is a talent. The boldness and bravery to pass on what you know isn't for you, instead of trying to mold it to work, is a gift. I took my power back after realizing I am the prize. And the same goes for you too. Once you realize you are the prize, the game changes. Knowing that you are a gift to anyone you come across changes the trajectory of how you maneuver in relationships, and it also makes you want to keep all the goodness you have only to those who truly deserve it.

Also a single mom, your priorities change. For example, you may not want to birth any more children, you may want one more child, or you may love the idea of having more kids and blending their kids into a whole. And finding that person who has the same views is a little difficult. You also start to have different types of conversations. You also allow yourself to listen to the words unspoken in conversations more than the words spoken. Now, this takes a lot of discernment and testing of spirits. (This is something I definitely didn't do before my marriage. Don't be me sis.)

My daughter is definitely watching, also. I didn't realize how much my daughter knows my every move until she does things I didn't think she took notice of. So yes, with this said, I have to make sure that I am doing her justice as well. So many variables of having a young daughter as a single mom - so I take extra care to not only to look out for my well being, but also hers too for introducing her to a potential person in her life. I don't take relationships lightly.

I also choose not to get so caught up in someone finally noticing me, that I fail to notice him, and all of the things he is offering. I know what I want or would like in a potential mate, that I don't want to veer from it too much. (Of course, compromises are inevitable, but red flags are red flags.) I've learned, if there is no ring on this finger, and marriage certificate filed, I have the power to still say no if something doesn't sit well with me.

Here's an example: take a grocery list. Now you know, before leaving the house, you wrote out the things you need on your grocery list. So when you get to the grocery store, filled with other things that are not on your list - you have the power and discipline to say "no" or "yes" to what the grocery store is offering you. You can either compromise on some things or not compromise at all. Compromising may have you to get a substitute ingredient that doesn't really go with your meal, but you buy it anyway. Or you can know what you came in for and go somewhere else if the store doesn't have that specific ingredient.

Same goes with our preferences, and standards.

If you know you that you prefer a man who doesn't work 12 hour shifts Sunday - Saturday, because quality time is your love language, you wouldn't compromise on that. If you do, you could end up miserable just for the sake of compromising what you need. And we forget, we can choose if we want to entertain it or not. (I've also learned, if someone isn't there yet, that's fine too. You don't have to wait on them, because if they really want to be in your life, the strides would be evident where you don't have to question. And then maybe you can revisit.)

*Disclaimer: If we are too choosy, we can see a blessing walk right by us because we have too high of standards. How can you tell if you have high standards? Look around at the real people in relationships around you. Not the celebrity social media fantasy marriages, but the actual real marriages. If you don't see anyone live up to your standards already, it's time to evaluate your preferences. We need to be real with ourselves.

So, as a single mom, remember being choosy can be a good thing. We have to remember now, we are shaping and molding our children's world just by allowing what we allow in our world. Remember that.

I am in no way a dating expert, but I do pull out wisdom because I am a life long student. I've learned the hard way how to not lose myself in relationships just for the sake of having a relationship. No one wants to live that way.

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