In case anyone hadn’t realised from reading this blog, I’m really rather enjoying being single this summer! And ten dates (and twenty speed dates) in, I’m not fazed by the fact I’m yet to meet anyone who has immediately struck me as being ‘The One’ … to be honest, with another twenty dates to come, it’s probably a bit of a godsend!
This year was one I was actually dreading in a lot of ways. Three of my best friends, and my eldest brother, were all getting married this summer, and as excited as I obviously was for them, it meant an onslaught of invitations addressed to me, and me alone. Or invites with a Post-It attached to say they’d saved me a Plus-One just in case I met someone before the wedding! There’s no better reminder of just how far behind you’ve fallen on the relationship ladder, when you see couples who have been together for years tying the knot, and realise you’re not even at the stage they were at five years ago!
As a bonafide singleton, I have no clue who my future husband will be. In fact, I have no idea if I’ll ever even get married! If one blog reader is correct, I’m destined to grow old surrounded by cats! Definitely not a future I’ve ever imagined for myself, but then you never know do you, because at this stage, anything could happen …
But rather than let all that depress me, honestly, I find it pretty exciting.
For a long time, I used to think that when you meet ‘your One’, that’s it. The end of all the worrying. But the older I’ve got, the more I’ve realised, that no matter what stage you’re at in a relationship, there’s always stresses. Whether it’s stressing about finding a Man, or stressing that you’ve found the right Man or stressing about when that Man will finally get around to proposing to you. And then there’s the stress of planning a wedding, and of trying to get pregnant. Financial stresses, health stresses … everyone has their worries.
So why bother worrying about meeting someone?
People in comfortable relationships will always tell you, you find a relationship when you’re least looking for it. If you want to stop being single, then stop thinking about being single.
But as a girl who has probably spent more of her adult life single than in relationships, but who would much rather be in a relationship than play the field, it’s far easier to tell someone not to worry about being single, than it is to stop thinking about it. The longer you’re single, the harder it is to not think about being single.
And the older you get, and the less singletons you find yourself surrounded by, the more you dwell on the feeling that somehow you’ve fallen behind, and ought to be panicking.
But rather than panic, this summer I’m embracing my singledom. This blog has become the kick up the bum that I needed, to remind myself just how fun being single can be.
If I wasn’t single, I wouldn’t be able to sign up to crazy speed dating events at less than twenty-four hours notice. I wouldn’t be Dating in the Dark this week, or signing up to Silent Dating events. I can’t count how many ‘non-single’ friends have asked if they can come speed dating with me (some with their partners, others without). If I wasn’t single, I wouldn’t be able to post random statuses on my facebook appealing for friends to hook me up with single guys to take me to outdoor movies, or zoo lates, or baseball games when I visit the States.
If I wasn’t single, I wouldn’t have been able to plan my summer around a silly spur of the moment challenge, nor book flights to Madrid and the States at a month’s notice. I wouldn’t be jumping on trains around the country, on nothing more than a recommendation of a friend, or making that extra effort each evening making sure my make-up is immaculate and my dress looks pretty, because there’s a chance I might fall for the stranger I’m meeting on a blind date.
Earlier this summer I needed a plus-one to one of the afore-mentioned weddings. Rather than wallow in my singledom, I asked the hottest single friend I know if he’d accompany to the wedding. We both knew it wasn’t a date, but it didn’t matter. We had one of the most fun nights I’ve ever had at a wedding, drinking and dancing until the celebrations officially ended, and if I’m honest, I had more fun with him than I ever did at a wedding with my ex!
If I wasn’t single, I wouldn’t be trying half the hair-brain dates I’ve been going on, or have a story to tell every morning when I come in to work.
So how could I not be enjoying being Single this summer, with the challenge underway?
A lot of married friends have told me how much they admire this challenge, and how they would love to have done something similar before they settled down. Similarly, single friends have told me how envious they are of my attitude to dating.
But the thing is, you don’t have to be doing a crazy 30 Dates challenge to make the most of being Single.
Whether you enjoy being a singleton or not, is completely down to you, and your own attitude to it.
Despite other suggestions, I’m pretty confident that I’m not gonna die a lonely spinster with a house full of cats. (For a start I’m not a cat person!). I know I’m not gonna be single forever, so while I am, I’m of the opinion you need to embrace it!
The great thing about being single is that every occasion is a possibility. I could meet my future husband at a supermarket check-out, or filling up my car. He could be someone sat opposite me in my office at work, or a man I share a train carriage back from London with after one of my thirty dates.
Yes, he could be one of my thirty dates, but I realise how unlikely that is.
But the cool thing is, right now, there’s always the possibility. And that possibility is the exciting bit of being single.
If this Challenge is doing anything for me, it’s making me open my eyes to new possibilities.
Rather than worry about the stigma of online dating, I’m looking at sites I would have never signed up to before, because I think it would be cool to compare the sites as part of the blog. I’m signing up to all manner of weird and wonderful singles events, and for one whole summer, I’m seizing singledom by the horns. Even when I’m online dating, because I know I need to secure more blind dates to the challenge, I’m being far more forward and less selective than I normally would be about talking to guys on the net. It may go nowhere. I may realise, as I did with Normal Fish, that I would have discounted guys for good reason in the past, and that my personal filters are set appropriately, but it’s worth a try right? Even if all I end up getting is a good story for you to read.
So …. my name is Miss Twenty-Nine. I’m very nearly thirty years-old, and yes, I am single. But do you know what, I’m really not at all embarrassed about it!
I have no idea who I’m going to marry. I have no idea what my future surname will be, or how many children, if any, I’m going to end up having. In fact, at the rate my close-friends are settling down around me, I may have to sit at the singles table of a fair few more weddings.
But what I do know it that I will do so with a ruddy great smile on my face. Because sometimes singletons really do have more fun!
Miss Twenty-Nine xxx