I am single.
No, there’s no fella.
Table for one, please.
Words I have to say at times. Awkward silences, even more awkward inner emotions. Then the reception of pitying eyes, or pats on the arm of “One day dear.” Oh friends, I wish for something else. I pray for something else. I work and read, I pray and I dig into who I am and what He desires for me.
But the sting of singleness happens. It hurts. Some days it’s fine, in fact there’s a joy to know that I am ruling my couch and my fridge that evening. But when you are in your mid-30s there comes a turn, at least from what I can attest personally and from friends. It’s a turn towards hopelessness, doubt and even fear.
We doubt we’ll find the one. We fear something is inherently wrong with us. We lose hope in there ever being kids, or even a spouse. We fear God’s best for us is several decades of loneliness or solitude in our homes. We fear being labeled “less-than” by those in our lives due to our marital status.
Frankly we are scared.
But we don’t admit it. At least I haven’t… until recently. Because to talk about singleness, and our state of mind in it would be to label ourselves as such. For years I have been told to live a full life and then some man would be attracted to that, rather than the laments of a heart desiring to be a wife. While I am not suggesting you run around with “Wife Material” emblazoned on every article of clothing, I think it’s time to shed a light on singleness and the hurts we face.
For too long we have been scared to say we are lonely, that we don’t like this single life, and that we fear facing the rest of our lives this way. Fear gives place to worry, anxiety and depression. It allows words of shame and regret to fill your life and cloud out all the rest. Fear tells you that you are alone in those feelings and that everyone will think you are unable to cope, and that is the real reason you are alone, that you just aren’t reliant enough on God.
I am here, right here, to say enough. There is no shame and no fear in admitting that being single is scary, when prospects are few or non-existent. Singleness is hard when the bills and the mortgage rely upon your work. Singleness hurts when you are alone on a Friday night but want so desperately to not be. It’s the cries to God that we get singleness is a good thing but is the loneliness and hurt too?
We hide behind veneers too often that tells everyone we are single and we love it, when in fact we grumble and hurt in it. We fear it. The platitudes no longer cajole or soothe us, in fact they wound us deeper. So let’s come to the table together in our single lives to face reality of fear and doubt. To be honest with one another and ourselves that singleness is often lonely but we are together in it. To look one another in the eye and face it all with hope, confident expectation, and understanding of the reality of our hearts longing.