THE BLOG
03/12/2014 02:49 pm ET Updated May 12, 2014

Push the Green Button

Early on in my post-divorce life, I realized that there were a few changes to the dating game since I last played. The addition of technology had complicated the process of meeting someone. I was overwhelmed by dating websites, communicating via email, searching (not stalking of course) on Facebook, and texting... a lot of texting. I learned that most modern-day romances live on text. After all, who has the time to talk?

My quest to find love in the age of technology brought me (kicking and screaming) to an online dating site. As I started using it, I learned that others online shared my commitment to impersonal communication. Here is how it works: a few messages are exchanged on the site, followed by some emails. Next, cell phone numbers are exchanged and then you start texting until a date is planned. Most post-date conversations are conducted via text. Rarely is there ever an actual phone call.

I was about to give up when someone totally changed the game for me. Not only did his profile speak directly to my heart, but within hours of first connecting we were talking on the phone. For those of you who may have forgotten what that means, it is the process of using a phone as it was originally intended... dialing a number and speaking live with another person. Sure, we exchanged a few messages first. But then, he asked for my number claiming he would call. I expected the texts would start. He quickly declared "I do not text," and let me know his credo on communication: "Just push the green button." At first I found this to be truly peculiar and acknowledge your current confusion.

He would call in the morning before I started my day. I first thought "couldn't he just text 'Good Morning?'" There were midday check-ins to see how my day was going. Then, after he put his children to sleep, I got another phone call. It wasn't that I didn't appreciate the effort, since I did love the sound of his voice -- but it was alien behavior to me.

You see, I'm a social media consultant continually connecting with others personally and professionally in cyberspace. Messaging and emailing is what I do all day. I did know I needed to unplug more often. In fact, I would joke that I needed to find a partner who would kindly say to me "Honey, it is time to close the screens." The universe didn't just provide me with someone who would help me unplug, I was sent a living example of what I needed to do more often -- completely disconnect. In addition to not texting early on, my guy declared "I'm not on Facebook, not sure what Twitter is, and I only have a LinkedIn profile for business." The fact that someone like this exists remains utterly intriguing.

As the relationship has moved forward, I have really started to notice how everyone around me is so plugged-in. Take a good look around the next time you are out to dinner, and see how many other patrons are on their phones ignoring their dining companions. There is a pervasive feeling that you need to be connected to the outside world rather than connecting with the person sitting next to you. Trust me, technology is fun, but my guy is really onto something. Put away the phone and just talk!

As for our phone calls, not only have I adjusted to the oddity but I love them. A behavior I once thought was completely bizarre I now cherish. When his picture pops up on my phone as it rings, yeah, my heart flips. Sometimes we both only have minutes to chat, like when we are driving to work, dropping off a carpool, helping our children with their homework assignments or cooking dinner. But it's the idea of reaching out and making a personal connection that makes it well worth the effort. "I'm thinking of you" sounds much better than it looks on my phone.

Any romantic relationship should bring joy to your life and enrich it in many ways. My guy and I certainly have a strong foundation of matched craziness, energy and trust in one another. He's joined my inner circle, met my children, and gives great business advice. His presence has also shown me the importance of personally connecting, and I now find myself "pushing the green button" when I have a lot to share with a close friend or client. There is a great simplicity in just picking up the phone and talking.