Ok, so this is a hard post for me to write about. In fact, I’ve written a version of this post about three times times now, and each time, I’ve scraped it.
It’s not because I can’t think of things I love about being single. There are plenty! I love the freedom, the opportunities, the staying up late and sleeping in, and the fact that I get to live with two amazing Christian women where there are things like slow cookers, Netflix, unparalleled hilarity, and a constant supply of chocolate and Bailey’s in the cupboard.
But although there are things I love about being single, I don’t love being single. It’s got nothing to do with the benefits, it’s just because I know – in some deep, untouchable place where even the fear can’t get to – that this isn’t what I am called to be. I want to be a wife and a mother. I’ve always wanted this. Sometimes in my crazier moments, I think it’s all I want.
In my impatience, I hate waiting for it. In my fear, I hate that it might not happen. And in my pride, I hate the mocking voice which tell me I am single because… because I’m not pretty enough, not thin enough, or not nice enough, because I’m too picky, or I’m too desperate, because I’m too religious, or I’m not religious enough. But above all, that I’m single because all the guys in the world have figured out what I already fear: that there is something deeply, irredeemably, and inextricably wrong with me.
It’s a cheering thought, isn’t it?
In one sense, my dislike of singleness has far less to do with my vocation than my own fears. It’s why I’m pretty sure if and when (God willing) I do marry and have children, I’ll look back on these single days with envy. I say things like, “Why didn’t I appreciate what I had? Why couldn’t I live in the moment? Why did I always have to be looking around the next corner, wondering what’s going to happening and comparing myself to everyone else???”
And I will know the answer: because I was afraid.
Which is a sucky reason.
So I’m making an effort to enjoy these times. Honestly, the best reasons I can think of for being single are what I’m doing right now. It’s a Tuesday night and I’m just chilling on the couch, chatting to my flatmates, and blogging away to my heart’s content. Tomorrow I’m planning on getting a haircut and maybe buying a coat, just because I can. Next week, I’m looking forward to attending a week-long conference on Catholic tradition, and hanging out with my friends, because I want to. In the next few months, I will be beginning a thesis but you know what, if I decide that next year I want to go to England or Rome or go save the whales, I can do that too.
Really, I can do anything I want, which is good thing because there are so many things I want to do!
But the thing I love most about single is just how much I don’t like it. Ok, that might not make much sense. Unfortunately, I know that I run to God precisely in those moments when I hate being single most. As corny as it might sound, I know God is healing and refining me through this. Sometimes, I think I can feel the sting of the antiseptic, or the stitches threaded through my wounded soul. I can certainly feel the growing pains.
But my Jesus is the great Physician, and He is awesome. And honestly, I wouldn’t be where I am today if I hadn’t been single. I might not even have been Catholic. All of which makes me think, maybe, just maybe, Jesus knows what He’s doing here.
And what’s not to love about that?
Read many more (and much better!) thoughts on being single at Jumping in Puddles!