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So I'm single. What's it to you?

A dreadful thing occurred just over a week ago.

I was at my former high school participating in a blood drive and ran into three of my ex-English teachers. That alone was not so horrible - it was, in fact, a pleasant reunion. The dreadful part came when their first question was - unlike every other time I've run into them - not central to my career.

One after another, their words cut like identical unsharpened steak knives: Are you married yet?

No. I (snarl). Am (snarl). Not (snarl). Married.

I resisted the urge to spit out my answers like daggers, straight back at the 106th, 107th and 108th people to ask me the question in the past few weeks. I still snarled slightly, though their questions continued.

Yes, I am attending the summer weddings of my 32 graduation classmates exchanging vows with their high school sweethearts. Yes, a psychic did inform me I would be settling down by the middle of 2007 and tying the knot by mid-2008. No, I do not yet have a prospect lined up, but I am sure my mother, father, two grandmothers and grandfathers, and handful of baffled friends would be happy to join you in your crusade to procure one for me.

If I sound bitter, it is because I am. And those former teachers realized quite quickly that I am angry. I am frustrated. I am (single) woman, hear me roar. Though I do not roar for the reasons you think.

I am 24 years old. Quite focused on securing, advancing and making the most of my career. I've moved between three cities since 2005 and have spent five of the past six years embroiled in greater-than-full university/college course loads.

The only places I've frequented over the past 18 months are either filled with books or equally as busy students - or both. Sure, there have been occasional trips to local beverage establishments, but none of them have produced a plethora of potential suitors (as my best - and equally single - best friend likes to call them).

My frustration, then, is not frustration with being single. It is frustration with people who find it unfathomable - disgusting, in some cases - that I've not found time to land myself a serious boyfriend, let alone a husband. It is frustration with those who cannot wrap their minds around the idea of - GASP! - a completely unattached mid-20-something. It is frustration with those who, because I attend weddings with changing companions for each of the changing seasons and have more than a few close male friends with whom I do not have sleepovers, assume I am either picky or a pariah (as I tend to think I am neither - though picky may not be so bad).

I am not saying it is impossible to secure a steady, meaningful relationship while in one's late teens or early 20s. I have - as stated above - many friends who already have their soulmates in hand. I'd just rather not be in my just-turned-18, shooter-fuelled glory when I found mine. I'd rather see life for myself before I share the remainder of it with someone else. And I'd rather make sure I do it right, than do it repeatedly. I'd rather not be divorced when I see those teachers again five years from now.

While out for dinner last week, a (single) friend said it best, I think. He said marriage is something to be done once. Done right. And done after many, many other things.

I vote for his sentiments to be permanently embossed on a t-shirt, so I need not defend myself the next time I run into former teachers. Or my family members (one of whom, at my 24th birthday, asked if I heard that clock ticking). Or anyone else who is stuck in the stone age.

Because it is not easy to find someone who takes your breath away. It is not easy to find someone whose beauty is not outweighed by buffoonery. Most of all, for many approaching career-oriented quarter-life, it is not easy to find time to find anyone.

And that should not be so hard for you to deal with.

Especially if you're not the one looking.

Comments

Sheri Monk » May 3rd 2007, 13:57

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People only want you married off so you can share in their unhappiness. ;)

Canadian Single Gal » May 3rd 2007, 15:47

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Embrace single life and quit worrying about men, dating and marriage. Celebrate your life by taking yourself out to dinner and a movie.

Author » Julie Horbal » May 3rd 2007, 15:52

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Haha. The whole blog was about embracing single life and not worrying.

lyn togado » Aug 28th 2007, 04:41

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Life is so beautiful with or without a man in life. Hehheheheh!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Well, they were thinking that if you do not have man in life is a big hell. NO WAY!!!!!!!!!!
Sex life? No problem, are you christian? if you are then, be happy!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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Julie Horbal

  • 37 years old
  • Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
  • User since Mar 2nd 2007, 14:46

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