A Girl on Her Own
If you’d have told me at 20 that I’d be single in my 50s, I’d have said, “No way!!” It wasn’t how I’d planned my life at all. I was aiming for true love and happily ever after, so imagine the disappointment I felt after my second divorce!
Initially, I resisted the idea of being alone. I thought there must be something wrong with me, and I was hell-bent on fixing that. My strategy delivered a whole string of desperate, unfulfilling relationships with unavailable men. One day, after an unexpected breakup, I couldn’t help thinking I’d be better off alone and I made a vow to quit dating for a while.
But then after a few years of simply surviving on my own, something magical happened. I finally had time to get to know myself, to discover what I liked and what I wanted from the people in my life. This blog came out of those moments of self-discovery.
While blogging, I began to take an honest look at what it was like being alone, both the exciting stuff and the difficult, painful parts of my solo journey. I can’t tell you how many times I revisited the same lessons over and over! It’s taken a lot of courage to keep going and not allow myself to get discouraged when I’m lonely, full of doubt and uncertainty. And yes, we all go there at times.
Life as a single woman isn’t a prison sentence, it’s a journey of freedom and self-discovery if you accept the gift.
Stick with me a minute here and let me explain.
All of the years I was focused on loving another, I’d overlooked the most important person in my life: ME! It was as if I was just waiting for someone else to make life real for me, to make things happen, to bring meaning to my life. And I let them take the lead. I placed all of my desires and needs on the back burner so I could give them 100% what they wanted. As a result, I ended up with a poor sense of who I was and what I wanted out of life.
It took being on my own a while to unlock the patterns of self-denial and sacrifice I’d been living.
Living alone, I began to unravel secrets about self-love, things I might never have uncovered while seeking the attention and approval from one significant other. In pursuit of self-love, I uncovered a sense of personal value I didn’t have in my intimate relationships. I’m not saying it’s impossible there, it just wasn’t my experience.
Over time, I found the voice of my authentic spirit which helped me to love and accept myself exactly as I am. I discovered that I’m okay on my own and that I enjoy my own company just fine. I found a sense of purpose and wonderment. I made so many more friends while not in a significant relationship, deep caring friendships that have been just as fulfilling and meaningful as any of the male/female relationships I’ve had in the past. Often they are also nicer to me and I needed that.
Just to be clear, I don’t have a problem with the idea of being in a relationship. I’d still be down with that. I’m just not putting my life on hold while waiting for Mr. Right. I’m going after everything I want as best I can, on my own.
Because all I’ve got is “right now” and there’s a lot I want to do. There are so many adventures that still remain for any woman like myself (or like you), and I want to say YES to them all, as many as I can squeeze in and afford. If it’s possible to do alone, I’ll do it.
When you find yourself alone, you have two choices: shut down and become bitter about life or open your heart to the mystery of self-discovery and personal integrity.
For me, there was only one real choice. Life seemed too important to waste it wallowing in the past, whining and complaining about all that didn’t go my way. Life was still happening all around me and I didn’t want to be left out, so I chose to open my heart and mind so Spirit could show me the way to love myself the way I hoped to be loved by another.
Ever since then, I’ve been writing about my experiences with self-discovery and sharing them with men and women like you to help you:
Develop the courage to say YES to your wants and needs.
Love the most important person in your life.
Create fulfilling relationships that bring love and light into your life.
Give yourself permission to have a rich life, full of passion and purpose, single, or coupled.
The greatest gift we can give ourselves in this life is to prioritize our self-worth, self-love, self-care, and self-discovery – to learn to esteem ourselves highly and to recognize our beauty on our own terms – all things that lead to better, stronger, more fulfilling relationships in the long run. At least I want to believe that…
You see, when you open the door to your heart, your soul begins to express the language of real love. And even if it’s a foreign tongue to you in the beginning, it will teach you that your love is what you’ve been looking for and the greatest adventure of all is the one you take to discover the truth of who you really are.
I guarantee you, life’s not over yet. The best really is yet to come!
-Tracy, a girl on her own