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Lions Roar : May 2019
©KATEDAIGNEAULT/STOCKSYUNITED more we see how this works, the less we need to believe these stories when we chatter incessantly about ourselves and others. “‘That’s just the mind, minding,’ I tell myself when my mind is taking me away from my breath—or my date. ‘Nothing to see here, folks. Let that go. Now, back to the object of my focus.’” ALICIA WENT ON DATES with a few other matches. “They were lovely human beings, but there was absolutely no connec- tion,” she says. Alicia also faced what we fear most in these situations— being ghosted. One evening, our support committee got this message: “Hey all. I think I’ve been stood up!” Alicia was meet- ing her date in a restaurant near me, so I flew in, ready to reas- sure her that she should not take this to heart. However, the version of her I saw sitting there stopped me in the doorway. There Alicia was, at the bar, enjoying a meal and some fine tequila—by herself. She looked happy. She was making eyes at the bartender. I giggled in delight. “After five minutes of his being late, I ordered my drink,” says Alicia. “At ten minutes, I ordered my food. No one else is going to affect my happiness. If he shows up, great, but I’m on a date with someone who wants to have a good time—me.” When fifteen minutes passed, Alicia sent us the text. “Lind- say came over to save the day,” she recounted to us later, “but the funny thing was, there was no day to save. I wasn’t devastated, whereas before, I would have taken it personally. Somehow now, I know it isn’t about me if this person doesn’t show up.” At twenty minutes, Alicia’s date sent a message that he was stuck in traffic but on his way. We rolled our eyes at this. It’s basic manners—text right away if someone is waiting for you. Her date walked in as I was walking out, and he seemed startled by a small redhead stepping into his personal space and glaring at him. I guess Alicia’s committee members are not as forgiv- ing as she is. I was seconds away from whispering, “You better apologize, punk!” with my finger in his face. Because she hadn’t taken his flaky behavior personally, Ali- cia’s confidence was shining, and this date seemed into her. But Alicia wasn’t into him. “I had the most magical first date with Mark. I don’t know who could top that,” she says. After a few more dates with other matches, Alicia decided she needed to step back from dating. “I need some time to figure out what’s happening here.” Dating Yourself LION’S ROAR | MAY 2019 61