One Day When…

I like the age that I am; I like the experiences that I have gone through, the knowledge that I have gained – even the struggles that I have encountered. All these things have shaped me into a person that I like better today, more than I liked even two or three years ago.

But the one thing I don’t like about being in my late twenties is being single. Actually, more specifically, it’s not being single that’s the problem. It’s being the only remaining single person within my friend group.

It’s a weird thing to watch my friends getting married, buying houses and talking about having babies, whereas I’m single, flatting and wanting a fur-baby more than an actual baby. If life was a game, then it feels like they are rolling the dice and moving on to the next level, while I’m still stuck on the first stage.

I’m happy for them, but there is a niggle inside of me that I hate to even acknowledge – a niggle that says, “Hey, wait for me,” and “When is it my turn?”.

And then, on Sunday, I attended a sermon where the pastor preached two pertinent points:

  1. God gives us what we need (not necessarily what we want). Oftentimes the wait between out prayer being received and answered is what we need; this is where the work happens.
  2. “One day when…” mentality. This mentality is when we think, “One day when… (I get a new job/I get married/ I have kids, etc)…I will be happy”, and usually occurs when we are waiting for something that we want (or think we want).

Listening to that, I realised: that is me! Watching my close friends get married, buying houses, and have kids… they are things I had always wanted, but am now impatient to have, if only so that I can be in the same stage of life as them. I’ve gotten into the habit of thinking ,”one day when”. One day when I meet the right person, I will be this, or do that. I was stuck in a sort of purgatory, just waiting for what I wanted.

It made me realise that while what I want is a partner, what I need is personal growth – and maybe that is what this period of ‘waiting’ is intended to provide.

It’s easy for me to forget that you can’t rush life, especially as I can’t help but compare myself to my friends – I know that I shouldn’t, but knowing doesn’t mean I can automatically stop.

I think in those moments, what I need to remember is this: life is not linear, or a race.

Defining Figures

Last night, I was reading my friend’s journal (with her permission), and she was writing about a really good friend of hers who had passed away. She didn’t know him for very long, but nevertheless, their friendship was deep and his impact on her life lasting.

This made me realise a couple of things:

  1. The strongest friendships aren’t always the longest ones
  2. You never know what kind of impact you may have on someone’s life

Quite often, I take for granted the effect that a comment or gesture may have on someone else. Something that I say as a passing remark may be stuck on record in someone else’s head. Something I don’t even remember doing may be an everlasting memory for someone else.

This was a timely reminder.

Happenstance

Definition of happenstance: a circumstance especially that is due to chance

Meriam Webster Dictionary

Do you believe in timing? Not timing as in the scheduling of meetings, or dinner dates, but the right timing for things to happen in your life?

For me personally, I have experienced a number of events that seemed like happenstance at the time, but as I look back and reflect, make me think that maybe, it has more to do with the right timing.

One fairly recent example of this is my breakup with a long-term partner. We had been in a relationship for almost 5 years. Things weren’t perfect, but they weren’t awful – I could see myself getting married to him, starting a family with him, growing old together. In my heart though, I knew that we weren’t right for each other. We loved each other, but our viewpoints on life were so different that we argued as much as we laughed.

Why stay? Because we had been together for so long, that both my family and his family expected us to – that future I could see for us was in part the weight of the expectations set out for us. I was also afraid – afraid of disappointing our families, afraid of being single again, afraid of not finding love again, afraid of the unknowns.

One night though, I happened to check his phone. Something I have never done before. And I found a message that I wasn’t meant to see. Long story short, we broke up.

I was sad, and angry – some of the things I was afraid of also eventuated; both our families were upset, I was single and feeling alone, and I didn’t know what the future held (I still don’t).

What I also felt though, was a giant sense of relief – a feeling that everything would be okay, and that this was the right decision; of all the rollercoaster of emotions faced, never once have I doubted this or regretted the choice.

What does this have to do with the right timing?

I have one unbreakable rule in a relationship: no cheating. I trust easily, but break that trust, and I find it difficult to rebuild.

If I had broken up with my ex over any other thing or argument we had in the past, I know I would have wondered “what if?”. I would have been stuck in a cycle of regret, pining after a fantasy version of him rather than being able to view it with a clear perspective. Instead, I broke up with him at the right time under the right circumstance.

And now? Even though I sometimes feel impatient about what the future holds, I also have a deep-seated sense of peace that I am exactly where I am meant to be for this season of my life.

Life isn’t always made of happy moments, but it helps to be reminded that everything happens for a reason at the right time (or, if you believe in God, His plan).

Just have a little faith.

Lockdown #4

Lockdowns are frustrating.

You can’t meet with friends and family, you can’t get takeouts, supermarket queues are insane, and good luck with finding flour.

But with the bad, comes the good.

Lockdown can be a time of reflection – it’s forced me to slow down, and build new habits (sometimes out of sheer boredom).

It allows you to reconnect with friends and family, even via online chats and video calls.

It makes us appreciate the little things we used to take for granted.

That being said, stay safe everyone.

Socially Awkward Social Life

Okay, so from my last few posts, you probably know that I went through a break up last year… and may be sick and tired of reading about it (oops).

So here’s a new chapter: getting a social life.

This time last year, I was sitting at home most nights and weekends, binging Netflix, eating chocolate, listening to sad songs and generally feeling lonely as f**k.

To give context, I entered into a long-term relationship pretty much the moment I moved cities, so my social circle was pretty limited; it involved my ex, his family, a couple of mutual friends, and a couple of work colleagues.

Yeah… with hindsight, I can see it wasn’t the best situation, but I got comfortable, and it meant I didn’t have to go through the rigmarole of making new friends when I:

a) find it an anxiety inducing activity to meet new people

b) find it difficult to make small talk, let alone keep an entire conversation flowing with a virtual stranger

c) have the hobbies (and as much recent pop-culture knowledge) as a 60-year old, making said conversation flow even more difficult

Yet, five years later, I found myself needing to rebuild (or rather finish building) my social circle. Here’s what I discovered though :

  • You don’t necessarily have to meet new people – you can deepen the relationships you already have

Small chats in the kitchen, drama-binging sessions in the living room, spontaneous after-work dinners.

Little by little, I got closer to the people around me and my world expanded, my friendships strengthened.

Little by little, I felt connected again.

Little by little, I am starting to live my best socially awkward life 🙂

Breaking-Up is Hard to Do

I’ve heard it said before, but never understood it until I experienced it myself: breaking up is hard to do.

Seriously, it’s tough. The range and depth of emotions that comes with it is unfathomable; love songs and romance novels take on a whole new meaning. Suddenly, you are part of a sisterhood/ brotherhood of the broken-hearted.

I’m single… the first time I said it out loud, it was weird. And tough to say without triggering an outburst of tears. In my instance, the relationship had been slowly crumbling for years – but to be honest, no matter the reason, when someone who is a major part of your life is no longer in it, it hurts. That’s just basic fact.

Let yourself feel that hurt.

Know that it will get better.

Know that healing won’t be a linear process; there will be days where you think you are over it, and then others where you can’t stop grieving for the future lost.

Know that you will emerge from this heartache stronger and happier than you have ever been before.

From someone who has come out on the other side

Introvert not Hermit

One thing I have found about being an introvert, is that everyone assumes you like to be by yourself.

But that’s not always true. I crave social interaction, and enjoy going out and spending quality time with friends.

I just need to recharge my batteries in between (yes, this is where the alone part does come into play).

Complex and contradictory – that’s me!