I am often asked "Are you married" or "Who is your husband" or "What does your husband do for a living?"
Me: "No - not married."
Other person: "Oh, well do you have a boyfriend?"
Me: "Nope, just me and B" (with a smile and a quick change of the awkward subject). People often have an apologetic look like they need to say something encouraging, "oh sorry - he will come along."
Being single comes with somewhat of a stereotype, especially if you are "older." I am only 29 - so, by no means do I feel like I fall in the 'older' category, but I think some would definitely place me there. This single-ness comes up often. Either by others or just in my wondering mind. So, the other night I was deep in thought while washing a pile of dishes... (a big pile because I hate doing them)... And I was thinking about being single. I was thinking about meeting someone, or the lack of meeting someone. How do I even do that? I sometimes think of what 'he' - 'Mr. Just Right For Me' would be like, look like, ect. The problem is I read to much. I have grown to love bloggers - and with that comes a lot of information about complete strangers lives. Some that inspire me and others I admire (aka totally jealous of their perfect lives). Bloggers and DIYers seem to be a lot of stay at home wives / Moms. Great for them - but, not realistic for me. And a lot of them seem to have these cute perfect little lives and it makes me feel inadequate as a parent and at my blogging and start up business attempt. Truth is, there just aren't enough hours in the day to dedicate the time to the things I would like to (parenting, blogging, photography, ect) ... well, there is - but, I NEED sleep - at least 5 hours uninterrupted, and uninterrupted never happens. Then there are those I completely relate too. I read a few articles by SDL, Single Dad Laughing. And, I like it. At first I was skeptical because of the name. I thought it would be about a bitter single Dad venting, but, it wasn't. Actually, it was just the opposite. He is real life. The pretty. The ugly. Very truthful and real. He wrote a couple of posts about being lonely. His lonely post, Watching an Empty Pillow, and the follow up, Can Happy People Be Lonely Too?, were very familiar. It brought my real feelings closer to the surface. I was actively thinking about how I felt.
I get lonely. I have wonderful company in my life. My family. My friends. My coworkers. Brayden, of course, is the joy of my everyday. Even Brayden's Dad - we are friends (well, we are a work in progress). But, even with all of that joy it still feels like something is missing. However, I don't want that to be misinterpreted. I am happy. Really happy. I have found a progressive contentment. I am still working on balancing but, that is life. I have discovered me. It only took 29 years, but here I am. I am still learning about myself but I have found my foundation. It was something that I had been missing - until Brayden. Strength and growth comes at different stages of life. He helped me. He helped me organize and prioritize my life. So on the surface we may resemble chaos - but, it really isn't. It is pretty simple. Between the snotty nose, screaming tantrums, begging, pleading, and negotiating with a 2 year old, we actually have a pattern. It is simple and everyday - and I love it. Truly. But, some days when the mundane sneaks in, I sometimes wish there was a counterpart to share in the mundane-ness (is that a word?). In the everyday wonderful that is my life. I get to do that some with Brayden's Dad. We cherish that little boy and love him more than ourselves. I get to share the sweet wonderful quirks, comments, actions, fits that Brayden has with someone who sees him the same way I do - pure perfection. We created this perfect little person. So, we will also have a special bond. But, we didn't work for a reason (well, multiple reasons but this is not the forum for that). Our relationship is now about co-parenting, which comes with its own struggles. It is a different dynamic that either of us are familiar with, but we are working on figuring it out.
In the process of organizing and prioritizing I have realized two very important truths. Brayden and I are number 1 and number 2 on the priority list. With that, I am growing increasingly particular about who joins us in this 'organized chaos' that is our life. Time with Brayden is precious. I say it everyday and I emphasize it as much as I can. He is growing up. And for me, it is too quickly - but it is inevitable. So, time away from him needs to be justified - that someone needs to be pretty damn special. Also, time not spent on the other things that I love - my family and my 'projects' is a big sacrifice. So, I might be lonely some days. But, it is worth it. I may be a hopeless romantic but, I believe that someone will come along and I wont view my time spent with him as sacrificing my time to get my 'projects' done. It will be reversed. And, when someone is special enough to be around Brayden - then I wont have to pick time shared with one or the other - it will be time together.
So, until 'He' rides up on his white horse... or big green tractor... or however it goes... I will be single, but not alone. Maybe I will rename my blog - SMS, Single Mom Smiling?? ;)