…… dating anyone?”
No. No, I am not.
“Are you dating at all?”
Nope. Not dating. At all.
“Why?!” (That’s the word that is spoken, but it sounds more like, “What’s wrong with you?!”)
There’s only one reason that I’m not dating: I don’t want to.
And no, that doesn’t mean that I’m stuck in my grief.
No, it doesn’t mean that I’m not living life fully.
No, it doesn’t mean that I’m afraid to put myself out there.
No, it doesn’t mean that I’m afraid to love again.
No, it doesn’t mean that I’m afraid of losing another love to death.
And no, it does NOT mean that I’m …… less than.
Of course no one says any of those things.
At least not to my face.
But hints are given.
Blogs are written.
Facebook posts are written …… even by widowed friends.
Sometimes those who have found love become “love pushers”.
They like to preach about how wonderful it is and how we (all us widowed people) should take that step. We should want to find love again. We shouldn’t be stuck in our past. We can’t really move forward and become whole until we take that step.
I know they don’t mean to say that. And I know that they’d deny putting that message out there.
But sometimes you don’t really get a message …… when you’re not its subject.
Sometimes your blissful happiness can cause you to want everyone you know to be blissful. And happy.
I get that.
But here’s the thing: I am happy. I am happily single. I am not looking for love. That’s because I don’t want a relationship.
I may not be blissful, but I’m really ok with that.
My life is full.
My life is good.
I had one hell of a terrific love.
And I’m good.
I didn’t have a perfect marriage.
Jim wasn’t a perfect man.
But it was a good marriage.
And he was a good man.
I always felt blessed beyond measure to have him.
And I still do.
Would it be nice to have that again?
Well, of course it would.
But do I need to have it again?
No. No, I don’t.
Again, I’m good.
I’m starting to feel a bit resentful for being put on the spot sometimes.
I don’t think I should have to explain myself.
I don’t think I should have to give any reasons for not wanting another relationship.
And I sure as hell don’t need people pointing out some false statistic that people who had good marriages will want to find love again.
I think that’s crap.
We can’t all be lumped together.
“All millennials are like this …”
“All white women are like this …”
“All Christians are like this …”
“All liberals are like this …”
“All conservatives are like this …”
I’m sick to death of this crap.
I’m angry about the divisiveness that has clutched this country in the last year and a half.
And I’m fed up with feeling that I’m thought of as “not whole” if I don’t want a man in my life.
I’ve had two relationships since Jim died.
Neither worked out.
I should’ve known that I wasn’t meant to be with someone when, upon learning that one of these men shoved wedding cake into his first bride’s face, I knew he was not the man for me. That was the beginning of the end.*
Some would say that’s a stupid reason to not want a man.
I don’t think we can help what we feel.
But I digress.
I have dated.
I no longer do.
I haven’t had a date in several years.
And I’m happy with that.
The thought of being in a relationship makes my blood pressure go up.
I just don’t want it.
I like living alone.
For the most part.
I like traveling on a whim.
I like having all of the closet space.
So, for all of you widowed peeps who are remarried, or in love …… I’m thrilled for you.
I’m happy for your happiness.
I hope that you have very long relationships and that you’re the first to go.
And for all of you who aren’t widowed, but are happily in love …… I’m equally happy for you.
And I hope you go first.
But please know that, just as everyone is not meant to be an accountant, or an actor, or a teacher …… not all of us are meant to be with someone. And it’s possible to be happy …… and single.
I love my life.
Just as it is.
(I think it goes without saying that I would prefer Jim to be alive and here, but that’s not a choice.)
I have learned to never say never.
But right now …… in this part of my life …… I’m happy with all of the closet space.
*If you or your spouse shoved cake into each other’s face and are happy with that then yay for you. I don’t think less of you. It’s just not my thing.