courtesy of

Last week I had an interesting experience at the gym. I walked into the senior exercise room before anyone else, something that rarely occurs as I’m usually charging in at the last moment. An older man followed. I’ve seen him before and I usually say ‘hi’ to him and anyone else as they arrive. I signed in first and he waited his turn.

Before class started he walked across the room and suddenly he was leaning over my shoulder whispering as I sat on my chair. I jerked forward.

“Do you know a Leon O’Connor from Watsonville?” he asked, his bill cap poking my forehead.

Startled, I replied, “No, I don’t but I’ve only lived here a short time.” Quickly I straightened my shoulders. He proceeded to give me a fast bio of his friend Leon. I nodded politely but felt creeped out!

Then I remembered that his wife had died about eighteen months ago. He mentioned it one day as he and I and others waited outside the room for our instructor to arrive. I said I was sorry for his loss and told him my husband had just passed the month before.

Now it’s been almost six months since Charles died. Was this man waiting an appropriate amount of time before handing me a pick-up line? Did he take the time to look at my signature on the sign-in sheet? How did he know my last name was O’Connor? Oh that’s right. My handwriting is very easy to read. I doubt most people pay attention to the list. They just scribble their names and then take their place in class.

Whew! Some of you have ‘warned’ me about men on the make. Am I being unfair? Maybe he was just trying to strike up a conversation around an acquaintance we might have shared––which we don’t so hopefully that will put an end to that.

And what about the guy in my neighborhood whose hair is as white as mine. He tells me whenever I run into him on my daily walk that I look ‘terrific’ or ‘fabulous’ or some other flattering adjective! His wife died two years ago.

Thanks, but no thanks, fellas. This is the first time in my entire existence that I’ve lived alone. I have complete freedom to come and go as I please and as the McDonald’s slogan goes: “I’m lovin it.” But I do miss that ‘safe’ feeling I had when I was married.

Such are the challenges of a widow–regardless of age!







Pick-up Line? — 28 Comments

    • Thanks, Julie. Yep, lots of widows and widowers are lonely, but I do want to be discerning! 🙂

  1. Sometimes new friendships can be fun. Set boundaries – but don’t put up a forever unyielding brick wall. Give it time and yes, be careful, which I have no doubt you’ll do.

  2. Karen, I agree with your daughter Julie. Hope all is going well for you. Just a reminder–it is okay being alone but a new friendship wouldn’t hurt! Take care.

    • Thanks, Mary. I’m enjoying the many voices who are handing me some guidance. I appreciate yours.

  3. Karen

    You’re right to be cautious.

    Just let the “pick up” lines fall where they may and don’t allow yourself to fall for them. It may be innocent. But, if you feel uncomfortable or doubt the intentions, trust yourself.

    I was taught at an early age to set Godly standards and desires for myself so I would be prepared to make the right decision under the pressure of the moment.
    (I even posted them to a journal & reviewed them often.) It protected me from a lot of bad choices or poor responses.

    As I’ve watch older friends & loved ones navigating life without their mates like you are now facing. I see how asking God for discernment to determine the difference between loneliness, companionship & sincere love could be of great help.

    May God help you know your heart.
    From my Heart,

    • Thanks, Beth. I love everything you shared and really appreciate your prayer for discernment. That is my prayer every day–for wisdom in all my choices and decisions.

  4. You are getting great responses!! I join the throng that says it is a compliment but be careful.
    Enjoy your freedom and don’t be afraid to let people know you are content.

  5. Wow! Who needs Christian Mingle?
    It’s because you’re beautiful. Because you’re just fine alone you probably come across as unattainable, which is always a draw. 🙂

    • You’re a lovely, intelligent woman, Karen. Take these things as compliments and thank God for the affirmation — and who doesn’t like to be affirmed? But then let them go unless at some time there’s a spark of interest back. I agree with Columba that confidence is attractive; and with Beth about trusting your instincts, and the God who is in you.
      The first time someone asked me for coffee after Jerry died, I ran – stopped going to that club. Just wasn’t ready, nor was he the right person although he was quite pleasant. When God brought Don into my life there was a definite response in my spirit even as I watched to see who he was and what priority the Lord was in his life. And what a gift he is!
      God protect your heart and guide you in all your ways! Love you.

    • Thanks, Carol. Nice words from someone who’s ‘been there’ and has since found her prince–Don. 🙂

  6. Hi, my Friend,
    I have been where you are twice~once from a divorce after 27 years and was alone for over 8 years. Yes, I was feeling great doing as I pleased and when, but I still missed the companionship and closeness of someone to love and just to be with. I had my chances but somehow none of them seemed “right”. Then God worked one of His miracles and brought a wonderful man into my life and we had over 18 years of bliss before he died. I ALMOST did not marry him as he was so much older and I figured I would be left alone again but I did a lot of praying and asked God to not let me pass up an opportunity for happiness because of a “hang up” I had toward age difference. It did not take long for me to know it was “right” and it truly was a blessing.
    You are still young and I agree~you are a real “cutie” but you must and you WILL be careful! Just leave it all in God’s hands and He will definitely lead you when the time is right and with the right person !! Take your time and enjoy each day as it comes! Knowing you like I do I am sure you will do just that!
    I think all of us will be praying for wisdom, courage and happiness for you!
    love, Margaret

  7. That is creepy, especially if he was close enough to have the bill of his hat touch your forehead! Yikes. He definitely needs to learn boundaries! haha

  8. Karen, men think I am single because I am always by my self, they sometimes give me reason to think that they are hinting about a relationship. then there are the men who know my husband is in the nursing Home. They are always asking me how he is doing. Sometimes, I feel like some of them are biding there time, until I am available-I don’t know how much is my own thoughts-it makes me feel strange. I like being my own boss too, Karen. would you want to cook and keep house for a man, now? yet, it would be nice to have a companion.

  9. Thanks, Mary. I can relate to much of what you said. A few glances came my way when I was still married but I felt safe being with Charles. I do agree that companionship is nice when one is single. However, I’m not even ready for that yet.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

HTML tags are not allowed.

63,477 Spambots Blocked by Simple Comments