I think out of all of the romantic comedies I’ve snuggled up to and the relationships I’ve been in, at the age I am right now I feel the happiest I’ve ever felt being perfectly alone and that’s down to one thing – knowing myself, and I don’t think you can do that in a relationship.
Hear me out…
When you’re sixteen or however young you were but for me, I was sixteen and in my first relationship, and all the things that come with being in one, it’s scary! There’s got to be at least one thing that you were afraid of that you still are now.
For me, it’s trust. It’s not a huge thing but lies to me once and I don’t even look back, friendships are the same. Its important because you have to trust someone with your body, your secrets, your reputation, everything about yourself that for the past 10 years your parents have been molding you into (don’t do drugs, personal hygiene is good, get a good job, have respect for yourself etc) is now in the hands of who you choose to be your own muse, influence and partner for however long you want and that’s a big deal.
I think because I come from a family that is so honest and open with each other, I find it bizarre why someone would truly want to hurt someone with a lie. And I’m not talking about that they’ve used your razor or you’ve used theirs to shave your private bits, it’s the real stuff that if anyone gave a damn about you, would NEVER do.
And I was watching the film, How to Be Single earlier, and it got me thinking, all the years where I’ve later been annoyed at myself for staying, did I fall in the dick sand (it’s like quicksand for those idiots that believe and fall for anything, then stand for nothing)? And if so, who was I? Because to fall in, you’re forgetting about yourself and this other person’s life, thoughts, needs, desires are all you’re taking care of.
So when it ends because they’ve had enough of you neglecting your own self, you’re left picking up, well there’s nothing to pick up because you’ve become this shell and then switch forward 3 weeks and you’re remembering things about yourself like some part-time amnesiac, begging their friends and genuine people to forgive them for what you’ll later realise is not knowing yourself.
For instance, finding something you love doing to cool off steam like climbing or traveling, why should that stop if you get in a relationship? If you meet the right person, then the timing should be right and you can kinetically be together in a way that’s not interrupting what you’ve spent years putting into yourself.
Its true, I’ve done things I wasn’t proud of in a relationship, where I’ve had plans with friends and then blew them off because my boyfriend at the time ‘needed me with him’. Its also true that I could have walked away when I wanted and not do things like that but I didn’t because I was young and stupid. I liked the idea of love without actually knowing a thing about it.
But I should tell you this, you didn’t waste it, you didn’t waste any of it, there’s still some part you that you learned or made stronger from any situation where you’ve simply forgotten to include yourself.
You’re the leading character in your own life because it’s yours to take, to grab and hold on to but its also yours to share not to give away like, ‘here, do what you want with it.’ NO! It’s an offering once you’ve taken the time to really know yourself and what you want out of life and it shouldn’t be quashed by thinking that being single is something to repent or be worried about.
Enjoy getting to know as many amazing things about yourself, try a new flavour at the artisan bakery, walk a mountain, book a plane ticket to somewhere you’ve always wanted to (ALONE!), go for a walk in the park and really look around you – I was getting off the train the other day and a woman next to me started up a conversation – do that! Her husband and their dog were waiting for her and they both had this look, he hadn’t noticed her but it was like he’d had the best oatmeal for breakfast or something, he looked so satisfactorily happy, not smug, with this smile that he didn’t expect her to see, but he knew who he was waiting for, that in a few moments he’d have her back and it was amazing. I just looked between them and saw her softly place her hand over her mouth and she laughed a little like she knew that he was smiling, his happiness was because of her. I nearly cried when I saw them embrace on the platform and their Afghan Hound, who placed its head up against her leg.
Its moments like those that I know I love animals, I know I like to travel and also meet people and be kind, so why would spend time with someone who doesn’t want to consider living outside the mile radius of their hometown or own a dog? If you’re spending time with people who aren’t on your level then you’re not going to be anywhere near the person you want to be.
How to be single? Being single doesn’t mean you’re alone, in fact, I’ve felt more alone in a few of my past relationships than I ever did being single. The trick is to use this time to know yourself, be bolder, better, think about your own desires, make them happen and then still manage how you connect with others around you.
No one can teach you what you want, no one can give you it either, it comes from you knowing how to be yourself.