Dancing alone.

I have to admit, I’ve been on a small hiatus as of late.  Mother Nature’s constant mood swings have left me feeling blasé and my newfound obsession with pinterest.com has fulfilled my constant need for creative purging.  So, needless to say, writing has taken the back seat… until today that is.

Leave it to Facebook to shake things up a bit.  It was on the social media monster that I encountered a post from an old college friend that went something like this:

I hate when people ask if I’m dating anyone and when I tell them no they give me that sympathetic held tilt and smile followed by the “don’t worry it will happen. He’s out there somewhere.”

Instantly, I was thrown back into the last two years of my life and the sometimes miserable feeling that walks hand-in-hand with being single.  Sure, you’re out there dating, putting yourself on the scene, but let’s face it: you’re attached to no one.  No ring, no half as in someone’s better half, or half, as in the half of the perfect, pretty little couple.  Nope, you’re you, a whole being.  And yet, when you add “whole” with “alone” you get somehow get less than enough… and sometimes, you even get the empathetic, painfully pathetic head tilt.

Sure, you’re spared the drama that goes along with being a party-of-two, but no one else seems to see it that way.  Two is always less than one and in this equation, sometimes it feels like you’ll never win.  I started to wonder: Did we never really leave elementary school?  Is life just another gym class in which everyone lines up to get picked, yet inevitably one person is always shunned and forced out of the game because of her solo status?  In order to grow up, do we regress to a game of recess?

When you’re in love – really, truly in love, you’re in a beautiful dream.  When that dream ends, you scramble to discern reality once again.  Two years ago, I was newly single and I hated every second of it.  I loathed the singles scene, hated the fix-ups and rallied against the pick-ups.  It took me a long time to realize that it wasn’t the single life I hated so much.  It was the missing him that left my heart feeling a little broken and a little more empty.

It wasn’t for nearly a year that I realized that I was opting out of the dodgeball game that others wanted me to join.  I didn’t understand why a set agenda existed to fall in love and why this agenda was followed by a cloud of pressure.  It’s the expectations of the path that infuriated me.  Who said you have to get married when you’re in your twenties, and who said your life has to follow this cookie-cutter outline of college, then marriage, followed by a baby carriage?  Who made these rules, anyway?  And why do we always leave someone out, to dance alone?

It was then I realized that being single was something so simply beautiful and so incredibly powerful.  Single status isn’t a syndrome, or some silly game during recess.  It’s a choice of love.  It’s a choice to love yourself enough to give life the time to find you the person who gives you butterflies.  Being single is about not settling and not giving up on love.  Being single is about spending time with yourself and learning how amazing you are, alone, as one whole being… because let’s face it, if you don’t like spending time with yourself, who will?

Five months ago, we found love again.  During those two years, I was convinced that when I found, or stumbled upon a relationship, I would feel a sense of gratification in proving to the head-tilters that I was capable of playing the game.  But, that feeling never came.  Instead, I felt a subtle sense of pride in myself.  I made it on my own for two years.  I was the administrator of my own rescue during the collapse of my life and I was the sole person responsible for re-building my life.  I was independent.  Sure, I played the role of the third-wheel and even fifth-wheel at times, but I didn’t care.  In fact, I reveled in it.  I did it on my own and I was set to never settle, even if that meant being single-party-of-one through the better part of my twenties.  I found love in a hopeless place… love for myself.

And I’m in love now.  But that love would never be as beautiful or as strong had I not found myself first.  Sure, I may secretly enjoy asking him for help and feeling his strength of support, but I know I don’t need it.  I don’t place my happiness or well-being on his shoulders.  No one is responsible for my happiness but me, and that’s perhaps one of the most empowering feelings of all.

For all the solo-sisters out there, dance along your own path and leave the head-tilts and dodgeballs back on the black pavement of the recess ground, where they belong.  One whole will always outweigh a half.  One whole beautiful person will always shine, even, and especially when she’s dancing alone.

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Comments
One Response to “Dancing alone.”
  1. Judy says:

    jordanleah Hi, just wanted to tell you, I enjoyed this post. It was helpful. Keep on posting!

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