A few months ago, I had a conversation with a married friend that resonated with me. Some interactions can be so profound and enlightening that I cannot help but to reflect on them. This was not one. It went a little something like this:
Friend: Hey, how's that guy you were seeing? What's his name...
Me: Oh we broke up about a year ago.
Friend: [voice drops a few octaves, dripping with sympathy] Awwww really? I didn't know that. Do you think you'll ever find someone?
Me: [blank stare]
Probably doesn't seem like a big deal, right? She's just a concerned friend looking out for my well-being. She doesn't want me to be an old, miserable spinster with 15 cats sucking the pleasure out of neighborhood children simply because they have a hint of glee in their voices. But let's take a step back here - I'm a career woman with a family, maintain a healthy social life and actively participate in various groups and activities. Why does my worth or measure of success HAVE to be tied to a relationship?
Her look of concern and furrowed eyebrows said it all. The story I've heard oh so many times. "You're too pretty to be single" or "how is it that you have so much to offer, but you're not with anyone". Naturally those people are alluding to the fact that SOMETHING must be wrong with me or I wouldn't be living such an intolerable existence. Before I would smile and respond with a, "one day...he just hasn't come along yet." After the conversation with my friend, though, I chose a different course of action.
You see, I am not single because I have no other options. In fact, it's just the opposite. Taking time to focus and develop is the best gift I could give myself so that I can make the best decision out of the options I'm presented with. Why waste time searching for something that will likely be there when I least expect it? Don't get me wrong; I have absolutely been "on the prowl" before. And guess what? It got me nowhere. Having companionship is nice, and I see it in my future...but it does not define me. So now when people ask about my single status with a hint of surprise in their voice, I make it very clear that the quality of man is more important than just having one. I typically gain agreement with this statement. A few of my coupled friends have been caught staring into space after I make my personal declaration of independence. Likely because they don't have the guts to do it themselves.
Let me re-emphasize, I want a relationship... with the RIGHT person... one day. Until then, I am comfortable with my relationship status. Are you?