BY BRITTANY ORIE
All my single ladies put your hands up! We grow up in a world where the media fills our heads with the idea that we must be married in order to achieve happiness. We see this image in sitcoms, movies, books, and in music. Society has a tendency to portray singleness in a negative light by using phrases such as “happily married” and “single and lonely.” Singleness is also negatively portrayed in movies when the main character is “looking for love” just to be more satisfied in life. Does this make singleness look very desirable?
There are two kinds of single women in this world: those who feel lonely and tired of waiting for that special someone, and the proud singles who joyfully embrace their lives. If you are the former, this article is for you. Maybe you’ve been taught by society that singleness somehow makes you look unwanted. That is not true, but I understand! I was once one of those lonely singles who felt I needed a good man to complete my life portrait. Now, I can finally call myself a strong and confident single woman. Singleness is viewed as a time to mingle and experiment with different men and discover what you like. It is also a time for you to discover yourself and find your own strength as a woman. This is what I had to do to embrace my singleness, and it was not easy.
I was about 25 years old when I fully, and joyfully, accepted my singleness. Until then, I had only been in one serious relationship. When I attended a university for the first time at the age of 24, I didn’t realize how much being single affected me until I saw affectionate couples almost everywhere I looked. I felt lonelier and itched for that special connection. I thought that something was wrong with me: “Am I too quiet?” “Do I appear boring?” “I’m not unique enough” and even, “Am I pretty enough?”
Valentine’s Day approached, and these negative feelings built up. I never liked Valentine’s Day in the past because it always reminded me of how single I was. I remember crying for about two hours in my room because I didn’t feel worthy enough to be in a relationship. After I had calmed down, I whispered a prayer. I don’t remember exactly what I said, but I asked God for forgiveness first. I asked Him to remove these negative feelings from my heart and to relieve me of the feeling of not being good enough for a relationship or marriage.
The very next day, something amazing happened. I went out and walked around campus and saw couples, but didn’t feel any pangs of emptiness. In fact, I felt more joyful, and I knew it came from God. This good mood ended up being ongoing. I soon realized that I had become content with my singleness. What really topped it off was something my friend Victoria told me soon after Valentine’s Day: Relationships—especially during college—can be a huge distraction. Relationships are beautiful, but they come with drama and stress. We don’t experience that too much during singleness. Those words really stayed with me.
As I got older, I found more beauty in being single:
- I’m discovering who I am. This season allowed me to look within myself and find out what I wanted in life and allowed me to establish it.
- I found strength in being single. Being single, I gained emotional independence. I used to crave having a man who called me “beautiful” just about every day. But I gradually learned to find beauty in myself, inside and out.
- I’m building my relationship with God. As a Christian, it’s important that I have that spiritual connection. I found fulfillment in God, not in anything or anyone in this world because He is eternal. I’m not unwanted, but God protects me from what is not meant for me.
- Although I’m open to marriage, I have found peace in being single first. Regardless of what the world believes, singleness is beautiful.