I always thought it was bizarre that we called it “being single” since, realistically, you are always physically, mentally, and emotionally single. Even when we’re immersed in a relationship, we’re technically single. So I’m curious as to why this label has become something that sometimes holds negative connotations.
Being single can be completely liberating, since there’s a lot of freedom that comes with it, as well as a lot of energy and space for deeper exploration of ourselves. That being said, yes, it can be really lonely sometimes, especially when you come home to visit your friends and they all have significant others, or when you’ve failed at something you really wanted and reject yourself, or when you’re pms-ing and you make the colossal mistake of watching The Notebook which, by the way, you’re a liar, Ryan Gossling, because no one behaves like that without receiving a restraining order.
Looking around and seeing a lot of the people who I love be in love is inspiring, yet there’s that tiny, discouraged voice in the back of my mind that reminds me of how not in love I am, then punishes me for not finding “the one” yet. (Which, I think there could be like 6 million “ones” but that’s for another post). What I think we need to remember is that just because we’re not in love with a person, doesn’t mean that we can’t be in love with the world around us, and the striking, imperfect, beings that we are. There are so many different things that we can channel our passion into, and it isn’t limited to romance. Sometimes being a tiresome perfectionist, I spent so much of my life convincing myself that a relationship was the last building black to the unrealistic framework of my “perfect life.”
Anddddd, I was wrong as fc*k.
After several crash and burn relationships, mostly based on the need I had to satiate my craving for a void to be filled, I’ve come to realize that being single isn’t a curse or something to be ashamed of the way it’s so often portrayed in pop culture.
Being single is not synonymous with being lonely, we make it that way with our beliefs and understanding of intimacy.
It’s actually one of the best gifts that you can give to yourself. It presents an opportunity for you to get to know yourself, your triggers, your desires, boundaries, and patterns, that way when you enter another relationship, you’ve got more clarity about what you’re actually looking for. Being in a relationship is also not going to fix every issue you’ve ever had, or give you the contentment we’re all striving for, and if those are your reasons for entering one – it may end up being an unhealthy distraction and you may want to revisit your rationale.
You aren’t going to be lonely forever. Maybe just for now, and that’s okay, because like every other feeling, it’s fleeting. It isn’t going to follow you through your days and nights like a long, empty hallway in a vacant house. If you allow it to, it’s going to move through you, integrating itself, then dispersing again outwardly. Loneliness gives us relativity, and it allows us to appreciate the gifts of closeness, knowing, and intimacy that we receive when we finally enter a new relationship.
We just need to be patient with ourselves, and learning to love and rely on ourselves when we’re feeling disconnected, rejected, or alone is a priceless investment in ourselves.
Don’t be afraid of loneliness, it’s only temporary.