First, let me set this straight… Am I single? Yes.
Am I Lonely? Absolutely NOT.
In my case, I’m proudly single and I’ve chosen to be (I’ll explain further in a moment), but I understand we live in a society where some people may think that it’s a curse or taboo to be almost 30 years old and single. Some people go years and years without being dateless to parties, and without missing the joys of receiving gifts from a beloved love on days such as today.
Then there are the women who may have never experienced a true Valentine’s day as an adult, enjoyed a trip with a special one or even been in a relationship that lasted up to or past 12 months. I like to believe that I’m somewhere in between.
When I look back on my earliest Valentine’s day memories… I can recall getting a chocolate rose or stuffed animal from a school boy who liked me and flirted with me in the school halls and there were times my parents would gift me with a gift basket on February 14th. So of course, as I got closer to adult-hood I yearned for an expression of love, such as that on this day of love. I looked forward to having someone in my life who’d be willing and able to stay committed to me (and only me) as we grew together in life. However, things hardly ever always go as we plan.
To be honest, I can count on one hand how many serious “in love” relationships I’ve had as a young woman. The first relationship that I was in, where I could envision a future with my significant other was with my high school sweetheart, during my senior year. The second, seemingly-serious relationship was while I was a sophomore in College (it was in all actuality, an on again, off situation-ship), and I fell into the third, post college, just 3 years ago. In all of these relationships I celebrated one valentine’s day with my significant other at the time so I haven’t celebrated too many of these holidays through the years. Again, I can count on one hand how many years I have (and believe it or not, if I added all of the time I spent in a relationship from ages 17 to 28 they would add up to 20 months, at most). It began to seem like the more Valentine’s days I experienced, without someone to share it with, the less importance I put on the day itself. It’s something I learned to be okay with, but it took time for me to get to that place.
The older I’ve gotten and the more time I’ve spend being single, the more I began to open up and discover more about myself. I learned that, in one way or another, I had been actively and subconsciously seeking for the next relationship, hoping that the next guy was “the one.” It took me to the point of my last break up to find the courage to stop making finding Mr. Right one of my priorities. It took a lot of energy for me to take time to really dig deep and be honest with myself to even discover that I was doing that.
There’s so much more we learn by spending more time with ourselves, verses running from relationship to relationship. You’re able to look at what went wrong or right in the past situation and grown or build from what you find. You also allow yourself to truly heal from past relationships, rather than using a new person as the way you cope with the past guy or girl. You become a better person for yourself, your family and for the next person who may be waiting to enter your life.
It truly takes a strong woman to be okay with not needing someone especially when you’ve reached the age where your friends and family are either getting engaged, getting married or having babies. It can make you feel down or as if something is wrong with YOU. But trust me, you were created to be who you are for a reason so don’t get caught up in that way of thinking. But do take time to value yourself over others. When you learn the value in loving yourself FIRST and putting yourself FIRST so many amazing things will begin to happen in your personal and professional life as your mindset shifts.
In my experience, I’ve come a long way in the past several years in discovering myself, my passions, my God given purpose and building a closer relationship with God. It was all because I was able to gain newfound clarity.
My journey for clarity is the very reason I’m single. I decided, in 2014 that I would focus on myself and at that moment I chose to be single. I also felt that it was important to spend some quality time to get my emotional baggage and financial life together to prepare me for my future family. I want to be able to offer my best to my future husband, and children.
So… On days like today, I could be down and out, upset, jealous or angry that I don’t have what so many people are broadcasting on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat, Periscope, etc., but I have an understanding and love for myself that money can’t buy.
I admire the authentic displays of love that I see all around because I’m truly a hopeful romantic, but until my Mr. Right comes along and presents himself as the man I would be proud to marry without a shadow of a doubt, I will continue to focus on ME.
Are you single? Are you doing something special for yourself this Valentine’s day? Tell us how you are showing yourself love today!