loves me not.

happinesssingle

My sister sent this to me last week with undeniably sweet intention. She knows the language my heart speaks – the undercurrent of emotion running deep beneath my surface. She sees in me what I see in her: the spirit of a seeker, a soul on a homeward path, a woman of depth and feeling. She is wise beyond her years and so often recognizes, without provocation, words I need to read even before I need to read them.

When I received her message, I thought, “aww, that’s sweet…but doesn’t she know I’m always kidding?” My single-ness has become one of my favorite sources of humor. I am one of four daughters, my parents are still married, we’re all wonderfully close, and I am the only romantically unattached member of the bunch…which allows for no shortage of jokes. I don’t think any of us can help it – my life is so often a walking advertisement for #singleAF (and I bet my cat would agree). From awkward encounters with men, to holiday gatherings, to solo-hikes, to vacations, to movies and music…my two-year single stretch has been a comical adventure. We all get a kick out of poking fun at my situation, no one more so than me.

Image result for chandler bing gif oh wait i have no one

The cute little excerpt my sister sent last week was exactly that – a cute little excerpt that made me roll my eyes and think, ‘well duhh…everyone knows a romantic relationship doesn’t equate happiness.’ I also took a moment to thank the universe for the non-romantic relationships I’ve been able to nurture during this time. Growing that kind of love is so worth the labor.

It’s funny, though, how it sneaks up on you – the gravity of being single and the void that sometimes exists. A wave of sadness crashed against my shore this week and it’s been rough. Sure enough, I found myself rereading the words my sister sensed I’d need.

I thought about striking the following from the record, because so much of me doesn’t want this to be about my ex, and I know, at least theoretically, it’s not. But omitting him would be disguising my truth…like pouring paint on a pile of crap and calling it a bouquet of flowers. The truth is, the fact that my ex is in a long-term, serious relationship is painful. Terribly painful – even though more than two years have passed. Today, the pain was enough to knock the wind out of me; enough to send a few tears rolling down my cheeks.

“You were so easily replaced. He’s completely fine without you…happier, even. He pities you. You seem so pathetic.” I found myself spiraling.

Maybe I was easily replaced. He probably is completely fine and happier now. He very well might pity me. None of these thoughts, true or untrue, should affect my sense of self. But sometimes, they do. Sometimes I compare my lack of romantic relationships to his long-term one and I become depressed. I believe my cruel thoughts. And I feel like I might die inside if I don’t receive some sort of validation…if someone doesn’t love me, romantically, and soon.

I’ve often wondered if there exists a series of words that, if he strung them together perfectly, would make me feel better about being “alone.” The answer of course is no. But sometimes I like to imagine those words live and breathe inside him – that sometimes he feels like I feel, that nothing will ever replace me…he still thinks about me…he still hurts, too.

This line of thinking always ends with the same inescapable truth: I cannot change the past; we are not supposed to be together; I’m exactly where I’m supposed to be.

I understand the underlying message of the words my sister read and passed on to me: romantic love isn’t the only important love; there is no other half; keep being happy & workin’ on you, girl. And on days I’m feeling particularly spiritual and enlightened and fulfilled, I’m comforted by that sentiment.

But the truth is, there are times I feel so damn unlovable, lonely…desperately wanting a romantic partner. Despite knowing better, part of me still expects to arrive one day in spectacular fashion, with the word READY stamped across my forehead. As if this work is ever finished. As if any of us are ever ready for anything. I keep waiting to no longer care about my ex’s relationship or what people think or how I am perceived. But what if those things never truly go away? What if part of the evolution is to simply accept the caring and the insecurities, and to open myself up anyway?

All of me believes in the necessity of my single-girl status. But five percent of the time, single feels like a sheer and shitty test of endurance.

 

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6 thoughts on “loves me not.

  1. I was single for a veeeery long time so I can very much relate. I won’t give you the usual platitudes that I used to get like :’It will happen when you stop caring’ or ‘Just give it time’ or my personal favourite ‘You are too picky’
    I will say that having been single for a very long time and having been married for a very long time I have learned the following truth: The most important romantic relationship you have is with yourself.xxx

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you so much for this ♥ I’ve never heard a relationship with oneself described this way and I absolutely love it. I feel like one of the biggest gifts of sobriety is the coming into integrity with myself – it feels a lot like falling in love 🙂 xoxo

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I was also single for a long time and was also in relationships that ended ‘tragically,’ according to my wounded heart. Looking back, the relationship was not only not meant to be, it would have been tragic had it continued and the reason is this: I deserve only someone who loves me wholly and without reserve. What’s tempting about having someone move on after dating you is that you play out the scenario over and over again with other people. Subconsciously, you play the game of thinking “This time, I will be more worthy. If this person loves me, I will finally be complete.” You then attract people whose love you have to earn, because you’re making the rules, and the rules are “you will give me my worth.” This can never be true. The worth has to come first. And when you love yourself enough to have a take it or leave it attitude that is totally sincere, you attract people who are at your level of giving. And if they then leave you, so what? You know that there is someone better and more worthy out there. More aligned with who you really are. So to me, it’s exactly like sobriety. You have to feel you matter enough to take care of yourself first. ❤️
    All break-ups are a lesson in self love.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. This. So much yes going on here. It’s been remarkable and so very hard (funny how often those two coexist) to examine my relationships with men. It hasn’t been easy, but I’ve forced myself to sit in this uncomfortable single-ness for that very reason. The worth HAS to come first. You said it, sister 🙂 Getting there, slowly, but getting there. ♥♥

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I was around 40 when it kicked in. As with most things, I chose to take the long way home. But the work really paid off! Of course, it was not a straight path — backsliding seems to be part of the journey. You are far ahead of the game because you are still so young. ❤️

        Liked by 1 person

  3. I’ve been married for 26 years but we lived together for 4 years. We have 3 children (who are 3 adults now). We are still together, but we haven’t been a couple for at least 15 years. Writing it down makes me want to cry. I’m perfectly happy being on my own. I genuinely don’t want a relationship with another person now. I think I’ve gotten accustomed to being on my own, but I long to be free. I feel like I can’t write THAT blog because I don’t want to risk him reading it. He’s a good man, but I’ve been so lonely for so long. I DO love my own company though, as well as I love my children, my mum and a small circle of friends. I realised long ago that I was perfectly content to be in love with them and myself. I don’t know if that’ll make sense – but if, IF I ever grow the balls to get out of this and ever meet another significant other, it’ll only be for absolute, earth shattering love. The gender will be unimportant. I will not settle for just anyone. At my age it’s unlikely, but one never knows. X

    Liked by 1 person

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