to be jolly, Fa la la la la, la la la la….
I love the end of the year because I get to celebrate several holidays that are so close to each other; I get to spend quality time with my family, give/receive gifts (always nice), volunteer (although this year with my crazy schedule, I opted out). But the best part is that I get some days off from work and get to eat whatever I want without feeling guilty. All while gaining a couple of pounds and then I make excuses and blame it on the holiday season. It’s a win win for everyone!
The holiday season is a time to spend it with loved ones but for me it’s also a great reminder that if it wasn’t for my immediate family it would just be me, myself, and I. Now, don’t get me wrong I know I’m never going to be truly alone but it’s the feeling that I get during this time of a year. I have a close circle of friends who I know I can count on if I ever needed them. But as I get older the reality sets in a little deeper and that is that all my friends have their own families; boyfriends, fiancés, husbands and children that they will be spending time with.
I’m not here to throw myself a pity party that’s not my style because I have everything that I’ve worked so hard for and I’m thankful, appreciative for every single thing and friends that I have in my life. I know there are people that have it a lot worst. They may not have an immediate family, have lost someone close to them, or may not even have a place to call home. As my friend always tells me, “be happy that you aren’t shitting into a colostomy bag”. And I truly am happy but I’m also human and I’m allowed to have emotions that resonate when the holiday season comes around. And it’s not intentional but I do have constant cues all around me especially from the mouths of people that don’t know me and question my single status.
My normal tradition for Thanksgiving and Christmas is to go to my parent’s house for dinner with my brothers. We don’t do anything fancy, just the five of us enjoying a home cooked meal and spending time together. There was nothing out if the ordinary that occurred for Christmas but for Thanksgiving, that’s another story. The day after Thanksgiving, I went back to my parent’s house for some left overs and to my surprise my parents had a guest (they never have company).
It was one of my dad’s long time friend who lives out of state, so I guess this was a special occasion. The friend came with his 5 year old daughter but no wife. If I had to guess I would say he is in his late forties and remarried twice (so he must be an expert in relationships) . Since he was not paying attention to his daughter, I had the lovely task of entertaining and playing with her. Out of no where the friend yells from across the room to get my attention. And I hear one of many annoying questions I’m accustomed to getting. But yet I’m always caught of guard and feel like I never have the answer that will shut them up. Out of respect for my elders, the answers I really want to give, I always keep to myself. Here it comes, “are you dating? why aren’t you married by now? how old are you again?” After I disclosed my age, he continued with his questions, one being “what are you doing wrong?” I gave him a snarky remark that I’m not the problem and it’s the type of men that I meet.
He proceeded to have a conversation by himself as I was not really engaged and I was more excited to play with a five year old than participate in this f.a.q. However, my parents were his audience so he continued. After the questions, came the advice and the judgmental comments. His job was to figure out why I was single and he was going to give me the answer I was so desperately searching for. Ah ha, “you must be very picky” stated the friend. And I responded respectfully that I should be picky and have standards because if I have my life together then the other person should also be at the same level as me. His worldly advice came next. I shouldn’t give up (who said I did), I have to think positive (who said I’m not) and the best one was that I should try online dating (been there, done that) or perhaps go back to my country because I’m guaranteed to find someone there (great, marry for papers). Normally, comments like this don’t phase me but this was all coming from someone who barely knew me. The kicker is he met his second wife through an online dating site which I didn’t even care to ask what it was.
My parents must of been having the time of their life listening to this banter. My parents have never questioned why I’m single or pressured me for marriage or grandchildren. Surprisingly, my mother chimed in and said, “I think she’s the problem.” At this point, I was annoyed and hurt but not by the friend but by my mother’s response. How could she say that and worst yet that she actually thought that I’m to blame and at fault for being single. Meanwhile she’s heard about all my heartbreaks and disappointments. I was in shock, but I had to remain the three Cs…cool, calm, collected. As I’m sitting there trying to ignore them and not letting their 50 questions get to me. I wanted to yell, curse and defend myself but I decided I wasn’t going to. I didn’t need to explain why I’m single or defend myself especially to my own family. I’ve learned staying silent isn’t a sign a weakness, it’s just simply giving me a chance to not black out on people and demonstrating that I don’t need to fight with words. I now rather listen, absorb, and analyze all the things I hear and if it’s worthwhile I’ll retain it.
But I must say it is frustrating when people don’t understand that I’m doing everything that I can to put myself out there and it’s just not happening for me. It’s not my time right now and I’m okay with that. Do people think I suddenly just woke up and don’t have a clue on what it’s like to be single, hmmm I wonder. I love how people think they know what it’s like to be single when they haven’t gone out on a date in several years. I know the advise I get is only to be taken in a positive light and to motivate me. However, at this stage in my life I’m pretty sure I’ve heard about 90% of the same advise. I’m a learner by nature and I don’t mind constructive criticism. I’ve actually reached out and asked about myself so that I don’t make the same mistakes. So for now, I’m going to keep on trucking and ignore what everyone says haha.
Happy New Year everyone!