It seems that being single has become like the waiting room in a doctor’s office. We sit uncomfortably, waiting for our name to be called. We might be nervous. We might be hopeful. We might judge the others, also waiting. We stare at the fish swimming in a mediocre tank. We read an article about the benefits of coconut oil in Redbook, wishing it was a copy of the newest People Magazine. We keep waiting. We see patients who arrived after us get their name called before us. We wonder if the other people waiting are making guesses on why we are visiting the doctor today. We hope they are being nicer with their guesses than we are with our own about them. We keep waiting. We wonder if they have forgotten about us. We wonder if our name will ever be called. We finally hear our name. We feel a weight lifted off our shoulders because the wait is finally over.
It seems that being single has become a search. Everywhere we go, we have the inkling that maybe, we will meet someone. We look for them at dive bars, coffee shops, and in the bread aisle of the grocery store. We even look for them on our phone and computer screens. Stop waiting. Stop searching. Stop thinking of your time as a single individual, as one where you are waiting for your next person. It is okay to be one-hundred percent, unattached and completely single. It is okay to not search, even though it seems everyone else is. It is okay to go to the bread aisle and exit out the other side with just a baguette.
It seems that being in a relationship has become a check mark in a tiny box that sits amongst a series of other tiny boxes. We have checked off the boxes leading up to it and now we want to have a reason to mark this one off as well. We want to have a person that gives us the ability to draw a small check mark. If we do not get the tiny box checked off, we think we will not be able to move on to the next boxes in the series.
We see our friends checking off their tiny boxes. Our empty check box makes us feel empty. But are we really? Will drawing a tiny x in a tiny box make us feel full? We believe it will, so we call our ex from three years ago. We tell ourself we are falling for the one who only calls after 11:59pm. We wait around for the one who tells us “I am trying to figure out what I want.” We settle because we think anything is better than an empty box.
We start worrying what those closest to us think. They ask us if we are still not over an ex. They tell you to “put yourself out there” and you wonder where “out there” is exactly located. Our exes move on and we wonder if we meant to them, what he or she meant to us. We wonder if there is something wrong with us. Are we not pretty enough? Not smart? Too quiet? Then someone kindly reminds us that our peers are struggling with the same questions.
The nurse did not forget about you. Your name will be called. Until then, read Redbook because when else would you? Stop judging the others in the waiting room for they are tired of waiting too. Sit in the chair and just be.