A recent conversation with an old friend inspired me to share some thoughts on single life. Until last spring, I had not truly been single since Fall Out Boy and Xanga were cool. For those of you too young (or old) to get those references, I have had one relationship after another since 2003!
If you’re wondering, breakups still suck! I’m not jamming Kelly Clarkson’s Since U Been Gone while writing this. And I won’t ever sugarcoat lost love because that’s simply not the way my heart works. But I can accept relationships and friendships coming to a close as a necessary learning experience we have to GROW through.
I have not always put my best foot forward in relationships. I can admit that when things got too difficult, I stopped trying. There are a plethora of explanations for my past behavior, but they are exactly that, past. One of the most important things I have taken away from those years is the knowledge that I have some ugly patterns, much like my drinking habits, I’d rather not bring into my future! *Spoiler* I don’t have a crystal ball. I can’t promise I will never drink again, I also can’t promise I won’t repeat those ugly patterns, but I can certainly try to avoid that girl from resurfacing.
Now that I’ve had time to grow and get to know myself, I see what I can and absolutely WILL bring to the table when I meet someone worthy of my weirdness. And I’m pleased to announce, I finally understand why so many people encouraged me to be alone and take time for myself. When I’m sad, lonely, anxious or angry, I depend on myself and God. That’s it.
I no longer hurl those tough feelings at someone like a basketball in hopes they will take it and run towards the goal for me. But I know that the person worthy of my love, will always be on my team, and call for me to pass them the ball when they see I need help. Aaaand apparently March Madness has taken over my brain?!?
So maybe you’re going through a breakup and beginning to navigate the open waters of singlehood. Or maybe you feel alone in a long-term relationship and you’re at a crossroads. Maybe you’re married and comfortable knowing you *hopefully* won’t ever be single again. And you could very well be none of the above!
I want you to STOP WHAT YOU’RE DOING and think of someone you love.
It can be a parent, friend, boy/girlfriend, sibling, pet. Now think of ONE way you can continue growing in that relationship. How can you put your best foot forward, let them know you have their back and that you are on the same team? I believe, if we take the time to do this, we can strengthen our relationships and not lose sight of the importance of love. We can continue to grow together and not apart.