All the Single Ladies (and Men)

I don’t know how it is to be a coupled parent, but I would like to assure everyone that being single and childless isn’t all about leisurely bubble baths, primping, feeding oneself bon bons, wearing kitten heels, shopping, drinking cosmos, general promiscuity, and fun, fun, fun, all hours!  I sometimes wish it were.  It’s actually kind of a lot to take care of, being on my own.  I earn all of my money, I do all of my dishes, if something goes bad in the fridge, it’s definitely mine, and I throw it out eventually.  I clean (or don’t clean) my toilet, I take out the trash, I pay my bills, I take my car in for oil changes, I pay the insurance, I try to motivate myself to eat well when no one’s around to take note.  Sometimes I eat a can of beans for dinner, sometimes worse.  I deal with my landlord, I do my taxes, I buy groceries and household goods and potting soil.  I take vacations alone and go to restaurants alone and go to movies alone and take walks alone…  Which is not to say always alone — I have friends, of course, but I’m comfortable doing most things alone (and for that comfort I am so, so grateful).  I wake up in the middle of the night alone, startled by a siren or thunder or a dream, and I curl up tighter in my blankets and maybe hug a pillow.  Alone.  I talk to myself, quite sincerely, in the mirror and in the car.  When I’m sick or sad or scared, I’m also quite often alone unless I make efforts not to be (which is so hard when you’re sick or sad or scared and alone is your default).  Like everyone else, I have 24 hour days, and I fill them.  And I haven’t eaten a bon bon ever.*

*This post owes much to conversations with Kavi and Barrett

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4 Comments

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4 responses to “All the Single Ladies (and Men)

  1. Thanks. I admire you, too (seriously, not just because you admire me). Sorry, all, for the little rant. Overwhelmed, and consecutive reading of Lorrie Moore (Self-Help) and David Foster Wallace (Brief Interviews with Hideous Men) is maybe to blame?

  2. HCSQ

    I am not supposed to comment on blogs (self-imposed ban)…but I just want you to know that I agree with you. The stereotype of single people being fancy-free and happy all the time is ridiculous.

    For whatever reason, a large portion of my friends are single, and I admire them all very much. I don’t necessarily lump them all together, of course, but I can see how a general thread of self-sufficiency (necessity-built or otherwise) is present in all of them.

    Incidentally, I hadn’t had bon bons until recently…I made some with coconut milk ice cream and dark chocolate. Not too bad. Kind of hard to make…messy.

    In any event, I know there are many things which you are so much more competent at doing because of the experience of being alone more. And I’m sure it is hard won experience. I am not good at being alone, although despite coupledom I still have many lonely moments.

    I was feeling sad for my mom today, because I worried about how much time she’s had to spend alone in the past year, since her nest of five children was emptied after 30+ years. I cannot even imagine…but your post made me feel somewhat better, because I know my mom can and will adapt.

  3. KK

    Haha! I was thinking, “Wow, she is so right on!” 😉

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