Thursday, 6 February 2014
Hello. I am single, and I am not depressed!
When you're single, a particular breed of people become slightly irritating; those people, whether single like me or coupled up like, erm, not me, who believe that being single is the most shameful and awful state that one could possibly ever experience. It's those people who send you mournful glances and furrow their brow when you rock up to a wedding without a plus one; the people who firmly believe that you must be wallowing in the misery of your relationship-less life, the people who instantly say 'oohhhh, it must be hard, you'll find somebody soon I'm sure!', when you tell them that you don't have a date for Valentine's Day. I don't? Shit. How will I ever come to terms with such gruelling misfortune?
Here's the deal; when I'm dating someone, or I'm in a relationship, I enjoy it, of course I do. I'm a big fan of that awesome, inexplicable magnetism that can arise between two people. I love love, and how it can make a fellow, insignificant human seem like the most significant and extraordinary presence on the planet. I'm also a big fan of the heart shaped chucklefests and the spoonfests and the general merriments that accompany good relationships. If I find someone worth being with, who's peculiar enough and willing enough to want a girlfriend who has constant marmite breath, the sense of humour of a 12 year old, and a tendency to bang on about space, then of course I'll carpe that diem. I'll go with it and I'll be happy.
But guess what furrowed-brow folk? I'm happy about this too. I consider both in equal favour. This is also awesome. I am revelling in my oneness. I am happy about being single, and that's a bloody a-okay thing to feel content about. Does this require an empowered finger click and head wiggle?
We live in a world where society's cultural fetishisation of romance and marriage and 'sex, sex, sex, sex, sexy, sex, sex' has the potential to overlook the charms of singularity, but I promise you; there are many. I don't have to check in with anyone. I don't feel compelled to pick the deliciously greasy pepperoni from my pizza and share it with my far too attractive, far too hungry looking boyfriend. Every last inch of the duvet cover is snug around my porky limbs. There are no 'all I want to do is be with you/sleep with you' distractions. I can be absolutely attentive to my family and my chums and my writing and my naked Macarena and everything else that matters to me. I can do what I want, whenever the devil I fancy doing it, and decisions are mine, all mine for the making. There's nobody else's sh*t getting all muddled and mixed up in my brainspace.
I also have more time to meet new people than I would otherwise. I am immersing myself in the perpetually fascinating spectrum of human creation (that's a fancy way of saying 'talking to lots of interesting/not interesting people'), and through that I'm increasing my depth of human understanding. And more importantly than that, I'm increasing my depth of my own understanding. I have an uncompromised opportunity to be thoroughly selfish; to nurture the most important relationship that any one of us can ever have: the one that we have with ourself. Hurraaay for self friendship. Does anyone else laugh at their own jokes? No? Just me? Oh.
Of course, there have been times where being single hasn't been quite such a jolly affair. I've felt the bizarre, consuming loneliness that occurs only when you desperately want to be with somebody who would much prefer to spend their time not being with you. I've probably had a quality weep into my pillow once or twice. But loneliness is a side effect of being human, not of being single, and right now, there's no such palava on my horizon anyway.
I don't wear knickers the size of Egypt (that may or may not be a lie), I don't nickname myself Bridget, and I do not spend each night staring glumly at the empty patch of bedsheet beside me. I'm not a creepy cat lady, I don't watch rom-coms and howl at the TV screen, and I won't even spend Valentine's Day weeping and drunk-texting my exes, I promise. Maybe I'll take selfies and laugh at my own jokes instead.
Also, I had a cracking time at that plus-one-less wedding, thank you very much. Never under-estimate the grandeur of using the 'okaaaaay folks, let's have all you loved up couples up on the dancefloooooooor!' Celine Dion number to demolish the unattended buffet. I had a particularly fulfilling relationship with 12 pork pies that night.
Click, click, head wiggle.
Tweet me your thoughts: @kathyb5710