So to start off, I don’t consider myself “a single.” I have a lot of identities: single parent, young widow, working mom, but I don’t claim the title “single” very often. I think the day my husband was killed I told someone I was proud to be Shah’s widow, but I would never go back to being single again. I still feel very strongly about that, but I want to write about it a little because, well, I like to write.
You see, I was single for some 35 or so years, and most of that time I was truly single; looking always, but dating very little. It’s that ‘always looking part’ that was the problem. Not that I was looking for a husband, but that I was maddeningly always wondering when my status would change. When I say I will never again be single, I’m not talking about whether I will be the only adult in my family, I didn’t have a choice about that. And I’m not talking about whether I will date again, only God knows. The part of single that I’ll never be again is the part that wondered why nobody liked me, and thought maybe I was too ugly, too smart, or too awkward to ever find someone. I spent a lot of time wondering which of those three things was the problem, and made me so unattractive.
And then I got married to an amazing and loving man. And sometime before, during, and after our marriage God healed those insecurities.
There was always a part of me that loved single life, but it was all tainted by the insecurities, wondering what was wrong with me and what I was missing out on by not having a husband and a child.
Now I’m single, but not “single.” So I can enjoy the benefits of being alone, without the insecurities.
Of course, I’d give anything to still be with my most loving husband and partner, who shared so many burdens and responisbilites and taught me to enjoy a life with a little more rest in it.
But that’s not an option anymore and so as I heal I learn to remember all the things I love about single life like meals alone, moving at my own speed, not having to find a television that we both like, and making my own travel bucket list. Don’t misunderstand stand me, nearly every time I compromised my personal desires in marriage it led to a memory I am deeply appreciative of now. But being real, if you haven’t sat by yourself at a nice restaurant with a beautiful drink and taken a deep breath of silence, you have not fully lived.
I know that God has a plan for me now, in a way I didn’t fully believe when I was younger. I think that that knowledge and security is the key to embracing, enjoying and fully taking advantage of whatever years God has for you as an unmarried adult, whether they are before or after your married years.