Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Why my love life is not a Christmas tree

Every year, when I go with my parents and siblings to buy a Christmas tree, we have to make sure we get one that can fit correctly in the corner of our family room. It has to be a certain height, a certain width, and have branches that look reasonably full and Christmas-tree-y.

But most importantly, one side should be a little bit stupid-looking, a little bit flat or sparse, so that can be the side that faces the wall.

Though I currently have a boyfriend, I have previously spent a lot of time thinking about how one should live as a single person who really wants a relationship. Do I make my life like that Christmas tree, where one side is flat, ready to fit perfectly next to a boyfriend, but empty and useless until then?

The church's message to single people uses the word "waiting" a lot. A lot of emphasis on the things we are NOT doing, the things we are "saving." I decided no, I am absolutely not "waiting." I refuse to use that terminology. Being single isn't some dumb meaningless period of life everyone has to live through before their actual life gets started.

I was adamant: I'm not waiting. I do stuff. I have a lot of friends, I'm interested in a lot of activities, I have classes or work or whatever. I hold the opinion that it's awesome living as a single person, even though I would definitely rather be dating or married. But to be single doesn't mean my life is missing something.

And my life, when I was single, was not that Christmas tree, with one part empty, ready at a moment's notice to attach to a boyfriend. No, I'm an independent person- and to live a life that's constructed without thought as to where a boyfriend would fit in is NOT going to make it impossible/hard to date. Really. I already said I'd totally prefer to be in a relationship. No problem. Stuff can change, stuff can move.

I did NOT, as a college student, say "Maybe I shouldn't get a job this semester. Then it would be harder to start a relationship." I did NOT say "Wow I'm really busy all the time- maybe I shouldn't be so busy, because what would I do if I had a boyfriend?" Yeah, I'm 100% willing to change my routine and schedule for a boy, but only for a boy who actually exists.

Nope, don't be that Christmas tree with one flat side. Don't "wait." Absolutely not. Live your life and be awesome, and if/when you meet a significant other, then you make changes and figure it out. Don't make your choices with the attitude that you want to always be ready to transition as easily as possible into dating.

There's no reason to live like this, with an empty space in your life.

Let's get away from this "waiting" mentality and embrace all the awesome that exists right now.

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