40 Something and Single, wHAT comes next?
When I tell people I’m single, sometimes they think I’m joking. Then I get the “what did he do to mess it up?” comments next. Eventually I get the “are you really single?” comments. Sometimes I feel like telling people I’m married just so I don’t have to have the conversation or deal with the “there must be something wrong with you” innuendos.
Not everyone out there wants to rush into marriage. In all honesty, that’s why I am single because I DID rush into marriage. I spent time in relationships over the years that were more necessity based than maturity based. You know the types of relationships I’m taking about. The “I need to get married, I need to have a husband to have a baby, I need to appear normal, I need to be with someone, I need to validate myself, I need to do what my family thinks I should do, I need to be the good Christian woman, I need to prove something to myself, I need to show I can make good decisions” relationships. We’ve all been there in at least one of them if not all of them.
As much as we like to say we don’t give in to society, it’s funny how we do and later beat ourselves up because we couldn’t live up to expectations we impose on ourselves that are often near impossible to meet. We feel stupid, helpless, hopeless and even inadequate sometimes. We feel bamboozled and then there are those of us who pretend to be “better than all that” when in reality we’ve been there too.
So what is a 40-something single person to do in 2015? Dating is hard! Mannnnn it is really hard. You run into the people afraid to date, the younger men with the cougar fetish, the older men who don’t want to let their youth go and the ones who want to rush you and scare you off. Around the corner and down the street from those are the ones who look at you like a bank account waiting to be spent or the other ones who think you should fall down at their feet because they have money as if you can’t possibly make it in life without them. And let’s not mention the ones who are bored in their marriage and ASSume you are soooo desperate being single and all that you’ll take any man walking, lol. All the while you get the stares and comments from well-meaning family members who try to marry you off with everyone you mention who happens to be the opposite sex even when you have absolutely NOOOO interest in these folks. Hell, one person I know kept trying to push a guy off on me I was doing business with and I finally had to say,” ummmmm. did you notice this dude does not date women?”
Some days you wake up and you’re ok with being alone because dealing with the responsibility of a relationship and another person’s feelings is a drain just to think about it. You have zero tolerance for games and BS that you entertained in the past. Other days, you wonder whether or not you’ll spend the rest of your life alone planning for the nursing home wondering who will tend to your false teeth since you don’t have a mate. I guess if you have kids, you can hope they will but if not…applesauce days are coming your way, lol.
Truthfully, being single is not bad. I like to think of my 20’s as the failed auditions and 30’s as the dress rehearsal. Now in my 40’s I’m ready for the party but the good thing is whether there are guests or not I’m cool with myself as the guest of honor every day! You become refined as pure gold…the kind of gold you have to search long and hard to find. One must be careful, however, to not allow your heart or mind to become cold or hard in the process though.
In this life there are some things that you can be sure of. One of those things is you have to be comfortable within yourself to enjoy life no matter if you’re married, single or somewhere in between. Even if you find a mate, being unhappy with yourself will only lead to a disaster later. As far as finding a mate, the older you get it is harder. The reason is because the really good catches are usually taken, and rightly so. There are, however a few of us folks that are still a pretty good catch that are available but we don’t put ourselves out there for fear of being taken advantage of in some cases and too busy to stop and smell the roses of love in other cases.
If you truly want to find love in your 40’s and beyond, you must be open to new things and looking at life in ways you never have before. You must also know that there are parts of yourself that still need to evolve to become better each and every day. Should there be a mate for you, they will come around but it is up to you to open your eyes, look beyond the wrapper and find the true prize inside.
As for me, I’m good right now and when or if the time comes…..I’ll be ready to laugh at the silliness of my 20’s, smile sheepishly at the joys of my 30’s and enjoy the bliss of my 40’s with whomever God sends my way.