Since we were little girls, we’ve been taught to dream of happily ever after. We play house and hope to live out the fantasies we have about ourselves trying on our dream dresses, saying “I do” in front of our friends and family, and going on to live our fairy tale with the love of our lives. I won’t even begin to touch on the unrealistic idealism that love stories have embedded within us, but I will recognize how this effects a woman’s eagerness to settle down. Healthy relationships are a beautiful thing and the joy that companionship can potentially bring is unmatched. There’s no doubt about that. However, one thing I don’t encourage is spending the length of your singleness waiting for those things to happen. Contrary to what society praises, being single isn’t a bad thing. It’s actually such a pivotal time to develop individually and explore who you are as a person regardless of age or time in your life.
As I get ready to transition into this new chapter in my life, I’ve noticed how much other women love seeing me with Nate. There’s been so much praise involved in getting engaged and now planning to be a wife, but where was this admiration when I was single? Throughout my 20’s, I built amazing friendships, got into the best shape of my life, I built an entire brand, and traveled to places I’d only seen in photos. I slept as little or as much as I wanted and came and went as I pleased. I shopped as often as I wanted without having to hide the deliveries (which is what I miss most). I genuinely enjoyed my aloneness, so that when the time came for me to commit to a serious relationship, I was ready for the right reasons. I’m truly blessed to be on this journey with someone so amazing and I’m so excited about the life we’ll build together. It’s so much fun! But I’d be lying if I said there weren’t times that I missed being in bed alone – drinking wine while on my laptop watching Sex And The City reruns. Like many of you, I often took those nights for granted. I honestly had no idea that I would’ve been engaged last year, or that it would happen at all. Now that it has, I often wish I that would’ve known, or had a little more time to really revel in the crucial growth my singleness provided me.
There is so much to learn about yourself as a woman while you’re single that will be difficult to find the time for when your life is shared with another person. The word balance takes on an entire new meaning in serious relationships. There’s nothing you should be looking forward to more than knowing your true self and giving her all you’ve got. You tell yourself that you’re ready to give your best to the right man, but won’t give that to yourself in the meantime. Why is that? It can so easily seem like women our age are just finding things to do until “the one” comes along. You agree to go to brunch with your girlfriends, but spend your time there hoping you find a man you’ll end up dating, instead of enjoying them. You go to the grocery store to get ingredients to try a new recipe and secretly wish you run into a cute boy on the bread aisle. I see women longing for a love that they don’t know when and if they’ll find to the point where they’re not satisfied with exactly where they’re at right now because they feel they’re lacking based off of your relationship status. Cut that out.
Let’s say you get married at 28 and stay married until you’re 75. That’s almost 50 years you would’ve spent with someone else, and only 28 you’ve spent with yourself. It may seem like a lifetime when you’re looking for love. We get impatient, we give ourselves deadlines that put pressure on us and we get frustrated when the relationships that we water don’t bloom. Why are you rushing, when you could be loving who you are all by yourself without the attachment to anyone?
If there is one thing I would encourage any single woman to do, it would be to take full advantage of her singleness. A day is going to come, where you won’t be your only responsibility anymore. You’ll have to wake up each morning and mesh your life with someone else. Even if that person is magic, it will still be difficult… because he needs you tell him where his keys are when you haven’t driven his car (don’t get me started y’all). Use your singleness to learn yourself, your flaws, your uniqueness, what makes you so special and what could really use some improvement. Use it to explore the world and find what you love, what makes you feel alive. Use it to dedicate all the time necessary to whatever business idea you’ve had for years, before you have to split that time with someone else. Companionship is complimentary, but it is not completion. There’s much work to be done all on your own. Do it now and promise yourself not to waste your singleness.