2/23/08

Singletons

Before I was a mom, I was a lot of things. I was a wife, a full-time employee, an available friend and family member. I was focused on getting exercise and I read a lot of books. I was a care-giver to people in need and I made it to church nearly every Sunday. I went to movies a lot and out to eat even more. I faithfully visited my grandpa at the nursing home, every Saturday or Sunday that I was in town, without fail. That person I'm describing is still me, what drove me to live that life is still what I am made of, I just don't have as much time for all of the things I used to do. I still visit grandpa as much as I can, and I do get to go out to eat with friends as my "escape." But I don't generally make it to a lot of movies and I sure miss church a lot. I don't work full-time for someone else anymore, but I sure still feel as if I have a job. Because I do.

I have a handful of single friends, most of which are looking to not be single anymore. They are desiring a husband or wife and kids. I completely understand that, but I never want them to feel they have less of a life without those things. In talking to one of my single friends just last night about these desires, I was careful to not make it sound like she's less of a person without a husband and children. Because she definitely is not. She is a lot of things that she will always be no matter what her situation.
When I was single (up until age 28), I thought a lot about singleness vs. the married life. I too really wanted a family of my own and figured I better get started, but it was out of my control and that was frustrating. I felt lonely a lot. Especially during times of trial when you want someone's constant presence with you, someone committed to supporting you in whatever life brings. The truth of it is that there really are no extremely encouraging words. It's simply really hard to wait and to wonder if being with someone, getting married and having kids is ever going to happen. And it's pretty easy to feel as if you've been left behind when comparing yourself to friends your age who are "ahead." There are a lot of married people who think they are "ahead in life," because they're going through with the typical next stages and seasons of life and being changed and transformed by them. But I have a problem with that mentality. Yes, I've been stretched beyond my wildest imagination as a wife and mom. But I've come to realize that there are thousands of ways to be stretched, and a thousand more ways to live and love.
It did bother me when people around me thought I was somehow behind when I was single. I had a desire I couldn't do anything about, but at the same time, I knew I was growing, changing and maturing as well. Life handed me challenges, especially during a certain few years, and handling them as a single person is a lot harder than it's given credit. But the same thing happened as it does for married folk. I grew up. Had I stayed single, I would have continued to grow and experience life, it would have just happened in other ways. Maybe in yet another dating relationship, maybe in finding what I wanted to be when I grow up, maybe in deepening relationships with family and friends that were already in my life, maybe in travel or trials.

Hindsight is always 20/20. I know now that I shouldn't have been so anxious about what comes next, but the reality is that I would be (anxious that is). If I were still single, I know myself, I would be kind of frantic at times. I would spend a lot of time and energy wondering when, when, when and how, how, how... would I meet my partner in life and why, why, why has it not happened. I would be thinking that I must need to work on myself more, that I must not be "ready." Since singleness is not my current reality, I can see that over-thinking it would be a waste of time. Time that could be spent doing a million things to experience all different aspects of life. And I would know that it isn't about being flawed or not ready. Because I know for sure now, as a wife and mom, that I am ever flawed and never ready.

Now I'm not saying the grass is greener. I do fully enjoy and love this opportunity to be a wife to Ryan and mom to Miles and Asher. Sure I miss my independence sometimes, but this is the life I was given as a gift and I plan to live it. I write this because I got to thinking after the heart to heart with my single friend. I wish I could fix it for her sometimes. But then I realize there is absolutely nothing that needs fixing. Because her life has been given to her as a gift just the same as mine. She is attractive, intuitive, vibrant and faithful. She is beautiful in many ways and has so many possibilities before her, with or without her knight in shining armor. There are a lot of ways to be married, but I know what kind of marriage she desires. I am so thankful that she's holding out for that dream. She's not picking the first boy on eharmony!! No way! Especially since he kept trying to hold her hand across the table, and that's just weird with a stranger,but I digress...
To be with someone who does not live up to her heart's desire is a much lonelier road than actually being alone.
Just some random thoughts on singleness, I have no idea why. Maybe tomorrow I'll share some random thoughts on marriedness.

2 clicked right here to comment:

Sabrina said...

This last thing you said, "To be with someone who does not live up to her heart's desire is a much lonelier road than actually being alone."
Is my thoughts exactly! I never thought i would reach this point in my life, but some days I am truly content and happy being single. Funny how that works out.

And yes... I am still on my couch pondering LOST! I hope to be well soon... Im still wanting to "drop by"

The Kings of Lauderdale said...

Drop by when you're well. I am still pondering LOST too for real. I had a thought. Maybe baby Aaron dies (TOO sad) and so Sawyer and Kate name their baby Aaron in honor of him. Probably not, but whatever.

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