Some people think it’s weird. To be over 30 and single. They wonder why I’m not married, why I haven’t “settled down”, and started having kids. There are people quite close to me who constantly worry about my ‘status’.
I did an interview in the Fall for a volunteer position. I was asked my age, and then if I was married. When I said no, he said ‘oh divorced?’. Because of course I can’t be 30 and never have been married, right??????
The views of some with regards to 30+ singles is quite humorous at times.
Many find it surprising that I am in no rush to get married or have kids. To be honest, I’m not even sure I want to have kids. I’m not totally sure I want to get married.
And I don’t think there is anything wrong with that.
It’s more and more common for people to stay single well into their 30s. They may date, have a few relationships, but for the most part they have chosen to stay single, focus on their careers and put “settling down” on the back burner.
A few weeks ago I read an article about the growing number of women in their 30s who are ‘relationship virgins’, meaning they have never been in a serious relationship.
And I think it’s awesome. Women who are independent, supporting themselves and finding happiness.
I can admit that in my 20s I ran away from dating and relationships for a couple of reasons. One was fear – I feared bringing someone into my world and forcing them to deal with my depression; I didn’t think it was fair to do that to them. The second was the fact that I am a commitment-phobe.
But since I turned 30, I released my fears. I know my depression is just something I have, not who I am. It can affect my life, but doesn’t define it. And as time goes on, I get better and better at handling it. It is also appearing a lot less frequently and when it does, it doesn’t last as long as it once did.
As for my phobia, that is still there a bit, but I am much better than I used to be. Because I am secure in myself, in my choices, and in my beliefs, and I understand and appreciate my own value, commitment is not such a scary thing anymore.
But at the same time, I’m good on my own.
I do enjoy dating. I enjoy being with someone and having a relationship. But I also really enjoy being single.
There are people in my life that think I can’t be happy unless I am with someone, unless I get married someday and start a family. But that’s ridiculous.
I have experienced extreme joy as a single woman. And my life is filled with so much love.
I have a co-worker who is 34 and single. Last week she said she should be married with kids by now. My response was “According to who?” And she said “According to me”.
It made me sad. I could hear the unhappiest in her words. I could see the stress in her eyes. I felt sorry for her. She was living in the future and focusing on what she thought she should have, but didn’t. As a result she can’t find joy in the now. She can’t appreciate what she has now.
I learned a long time ago never to plan too far ahead. Because it almost never works out the way you think it will, and you just end up disappointed.
I know people who stew in jealousy over their friends’s happy marriages and new born babies. I know girls who live in misery because the guy next door doesn’t pick up their ‘hints’. (Sidenote for the girls: guys never pick up on the hints that we think are so obvious – you need to spell it out).
And I know people who are my age, who got married young and saw forever, but now they are finalizing divorce papers. As they and their spouse grew up, they also grew apart. They never imagined it would end this way.
You can’t predict the future. Just like you can’t change the past. You have to embrace the now.
And I am not going to focus on what I don’t have. I’m not going to sit in misery because life hasn’t turned out the way I thought it would. I am going to focus on the good and find joy in the life I have.
My life is good. And I am not single because there is something wrong with me. Nor is my life any less fulfilling than those who are a couple.
I have no idea what the future holds and that excites me. I am open to anything. If I meet someone, fall in love and get married, that’s great. If I stay single and focus on my passions, that’s awesome. If I get asked to go on a year long mission trip to Africa, that’s amazing.
I don’t believe in closing doors. I am all about ‘never say never’.
I enjoy being single.
I enjoy being part of a couple.
But I am not defined by my “status”. My happiness is not based on that.
My happiness comes from my ability to see the good over the bad. My ability to embrace the positive and disregard the negative. My ability to release control and be grateful for the blessings that come my way.
My joy comes from what I can do for others and how I can make them happy.
Maybe one day I’ll find someone who sees life as I do and wants to embrace the best and forget the rest with me. Maybe I won’t.
I’m good either way.