Marriage? Shacking Up? Not Likely
Years ago, when my longest long-term relationship ended abruptly I wanted my life to do the same. When it was not doing so of its own volition, I took matters into my own hands. Twice. Now, almost nine years later, I am single, almost 51 years old and loving life as never before. Sure, I have had moments when I’ve wanted to use sites like Doublelist to find some friends or even build a relationship with someone. But I’ve never really had the courage, so I’ve kept to myself.
In the time since, marriage and other relationships visited with me but briefly. It seems as if something not only broke within me but another started growing, taking root so to speak. Do not misunderstand, my most recent ex-husband is someone who had my affection and it was my feeling that we could have made something of it. However, coupled with my not completely healing, not only from the breakup but there were issues that marred my psyche and spirit since childhood. Then there were other challenges that were not settled in me about man/woman relating. He too had his own set of challenges that were holding him back from truly loving life as it had unfold for him, leading him to alcoholism, mental health issues and not being too sure what to do with his temper and hands, aside from laying them on a woman.
After the marriage ended, other relationships came but none that lead to living together and I was perfectly fine with that. In actuality, as time passed and as I grew increasingly more comfortable with living alone, it is a conversation that I cannot contemplate. There was a time in my youth when the thought of a long distance relationship would bring me to tears. Now, the thought of living with someone would send me running to the hills. I hear all of you who are married or have been successfully, whatever that means to you, living with someone saying, “relationships take work, etc.” Working hard at anything is not an issue for me. Working in vain, against my better judgement, trying to force what is “not meant to be” to be is not an activity that inspires me.
Loving Life Single
I love being single. It is not just something that sounds nice to say or in this case write. It is a truth for me. Recently, one of our Contributors shared an article, Discover The Joys of Being A Single Woman. This piece was more geared towards woman 30 years and younger. While I can completely relate to most of it, this post is for women 50 and older who are single and not so sure whether they are loving life as it is at this point.
A recent comment on one of our posts stated that in the blogosphere many bloggers are not being true to themselves and therefore, in my estimation, they are not being real with their audiences. One thing you can rely on me for, and I dare to say just about all the Contributors here, are frank and honest conversations. When it comes to being single and loving life, what follows are my honest reasons why I love being single. Some of them you will not agree with, some you might find as “too much information,” and others you will see yourself completely in as if a mirror was being held up to your face. Some are self-explanatory so the ones that are not so much I will detail:
- The “C” word is one that I abhor, will no longer accept hearing and most certainly will not suggest it about anyone. A few days ago on Facebook, I saw this clip of an interview with the late Eartha Kitt and in her enigmatically wise way she described my feelings about the “C” word. “Why should you compromise who you are because you are in a relationship?” she basically asked. Funny enough, it is the woman who is usually expected to put on hold, put aside, lay away aspects of who she is – the person to whom the man was attracted to in the first place and then decided to live with – for the sake of the relationship. At 20, 30 even 40 years of age, I compromised so many parts of me, including my career ambitions (I wanted to be a politician), in order to be in a relationship, keep and help my mate. At 50, the only “C” word crossing my lips is “Complementary.” If we are not complementing each other’s intrinsic person-hood, then no thank you, I am not interested.
- Late night or early morning unexpected dunking is not something that I find enjoyable. My experience living with a man has been that this is an activity you have to either learn to love or always be ready to avoid. What I am talking about is falling into the toilet during mid-sleep walk, without your eyeglasses and in the dark, to ease yourself. As a single woman, this is not something that you have to contend with as the toilet seat is always down – except when cleaning.
- Bad sex. At 50, I know good sex from okay sex different from outright bad sex. Say whatever you like, pretend as much as you want, but sex is a very important part of relationships. It is not the most important but it is high up there and if it is only tolerable at best, then I would rather be single. Enough said.
- Showering is optional when single. Before you start pinching your noses, I shower and do so very often. However, it can be an optional activity on those days when life is as such that all you want to do is stay in your pajamas all day, into evening and fall asleep right there on the couch with the television watching you – without explaining or apologizing.
- My daughter and I are pretty close, sharing most things and details of our lives. We have our differences and some of them are quite amusing. One day we fell into an hysterical bout of laughter when she noticed my poor ‘gardening’ skills. She cautioned me that if I wanted to be in a relationship, I would need to sharpen my blades and tend to the ‘bush’ that was threatening to overtake my property. See, there are times when I am just not in the mood or landscaping is the last thing on my mind and so my field gets a bit overgrown. As a single woman, that is no big deal but, as my daughter said, intimate partners these days, thanks to the media and general hype, prefer a smooth landing ground. To heck with them!
Five Reasons And More
These are just five of the many reasons why at 50 and single I am loving life no end and probably will not change my marital status or living arrangement. Other “important” factors that I could have included are things like being able to account for and manage my money (financial benefits), dressing for myself and according to personal taste and not to impress a suitor or to fit into a spouse’s mold and practicing, worshipping and maintaining my spiritual life according to my personal ideals without concern for or restrictions to accommodate differences between a mate’s ways. This last one is very important to me as my last longest long-term relationship took a nosedive when my spiritual life began in earnest and my partner’s stood still.
This past weekend I was doing the Netflix and chill routine, solo and without the complete chill – if you know what I mean. One of the movies that I watched was about a woman in her 70’s, widowed, living alone and loving life with her group of similarly single, older female friends. There might come a point in my life when that woman is me. After her sole companion, her dog of many years, died she was left in a quandary, unsure what next. She met two men, one younger and one closer to her age. Without giving away too much as I would invite you to watch it, she came to a point when she had to decide whether to sell her house, join her friends and move into a retirement community or continue loving life and living it on her terms. The movie is titled “I Will See You In My Dreams,” check it out:
Until That Day…
If and when that day comes, my hope is that my decision, as all my decisions now to embrace and continue loving life as an almost 50+ single woman, will be to let my heart sing its songs as loudly as it does today. It might be different for you as you might be married or living with someone and have them “trained” to put down the toilet seat and you have impeccable ‘gardening’ skills. Then this post is not for you. For everyone else who understands that turning 50 or more is not a reason to compromise or settle, trade in or fear being single, please share your thoughts in the comments below.
Every Monday through Fridays, first thing in the mornings, Subscribers of all ages receive a Weekday Wisdom in their inbox that helps to ground us, supporting our embrace of life right where we are in it. Join this community and get your daily dose of wisdom, as well as my monthly free newsletter and access to my free E-books. Loving life is an option that is always open to us no matter whether married, in a relationship or single. It is important to remember that and not measure your life against anyone else’ because it looks different.
Have a blessed day!