Thursday, April 15, 2010

Single: The Pros and Cons.

I've been purposefully single for a year.

(Note: Even if TGIL had liked me back, I still would've insisted that he get his head together and be single himself for a year. Independence and clarity of thought are the two greatest gifts one person can give another.)

Here is what I've learned so far:

The Pros

1. Sleeping in the middle of the bed. Nothing compares to starfishing in the center of the bed after a long night/day at work.

2. Really fucking long showers. Running the hot water heater out by myself is a pleasure I hadn't had in a long time.

3. Time to be with my own self. The running commentary that another person in the room introduces, even at the level of private thoughts, is taxing after a while.

4. Obnoxious self-examination on a psychological level. Again, interacting with another person in the same space blunts introspection. Getting to the root of things (see mental clarity, above) is an interesting and profitable exercise.

5. Walking around naked. It's neither advertisement nor suggestion when you live by yourself; it just means you're too lazy to put clothes on.

The Cons

1. Leftovers. How often can I eat biriyani without being tired of it? About twice. Since my recipe makes a ton, that means I get tired of it fast.

2. Cold feet. A hot water bottle mitigates this, but it's not the same as putting your freezing feet on somebody else's warm ones.

3. Not having anybody that has your back. Seriously, this is the biggest problem I have with being single. I'm lucky in that I have fantastic neighbors and friends who do what they can and do it happily, but it's still not the same as knowing that, if it storms, there's somebody around who will comfort Max in his fear of hail and thunder. When I'm on my back under the kitchen sink, it sure would be nice to have someone around who can hand me the damn pipe wrench rather than me having to unfurl to find it myself.

4. Nobody's there to bounce ideas off of. That's the flipside of being introspective; there's not another person to pull you out of a black hole of thoughtfulness. As I told The Brother In BFE the other day, I don't have enough sane friends left, so I have to cherish the ones I've got.

5. Back scratches. I miss them. I will not lie: getting your back scratched is the primary reason to get married; all else is gravy. Romance, a martini waiting for you and a meal in the oven when you get home, and sex are all secondary to getting back scratches. The cats try, but they just can't match another human.

That's what I've learned in a year. I wonder what I'll learn next year: I'm purposefully single until at least April of 2011.


Amy said...

The not having anyone to have your back is the hardest for me, mostly for the little things. I'll hear my couple friends arguing about taking out the garbage or whatever, and I'm like, wow, if I don't get off my ass, it just doesn't get done. Ditto busted light bulbs, the spider on the wall, all of it.

little d, S.N. said...

I agree with Amy. I'm PARALYZINGLY afraid of spiders, and there's no one else to smack them for me! (I solve this by throwing slippers at them until they die).

Also, there are some things that actually ARE too heavy for small compact me to lift, or too bulky so they smack me in the knees. A taller person would be quite handy.

Single for 5 years now...

An Open Heart said...

Cost Plus has bamboo back scratchers....mine works GREAT!

Purposeful singledom, not enough people practice this.....


messymimi said...

Everything has good and bad, and I am glad you are making the most of this time in your life.

I know too many people who idealize coupledom and spend enormous amounts of time trying to find someone without knowing themselves. Then they marry in haste and repent at leisure.

Marjorie said...

I'm in the same boat... Most days, I'm happy with where my life is. On the bad days I just have to work extra hard at reminding myself to be grateful for what I have.

Take care...