I'm alone but I'm not lonely!
That's what I would say to myself over and over again as I sat at night in my queen size bed arranging the pillows in a way so one side of the bed would not look so empty. I would also say this statement to myself as I walked through my home when it was so quiet I could hear nothing but the wall clock tick tocking away. During the early months after my divorce, living each day alone was very hard. I was used to sharing my days with my spouse and doing things as a couple, down to the grocery shopping. Now as a single woman I had to get use to doing daily activities and making decisions that only affect me.
Now as I'm getting use to being a single woman, I'm free to do the things I've previously wanted to do but didn't because when I was a married woman I often put the needs of my husband and kids before my own. But with divorce came new freedoms and choices. I can go on vacations to places when and where I like, I can make purchases for what I want without having to talk it over with someone else, I can even choose the restaurants and movies I like without having to see if someone else likes the choice or not. This new found freedom didn't come easily, it took time to change years of thinking and living as part of a couple to now thinking and living as a single woman.
How does being alone affect my relationships with men? Now that I have this new found courage in my status of being single, I have approached dating in a new way. I no longer date to find someone so I can have a warm body in my bed, or to have someone to wake up to everyday and eat dinner with every night. That type of companionship is what I looked for when I was lonely and alone. Now when I date I am more focused on finding someone I can have fun with, who enjoys my company and wants to be with me because he likes me and that does not mean we have to sleep together or that he has to be a permanent fixture in my life.
I'm not saying I don't want to have that sole companion one day, I'm just saying that I don't need a warm body in my bed to make me happy or a whole person. To tell you the truth, I kind of like having the bed all to myself. I've become kind of a blanket and sheet hogger and now I'm enjoying eating some dinners alone, that way I can cook or not cook if I want to, and that would be my decision. I like going out on dates and meeting new people but now it's on my terms and I make the decisions of who, what, when and where the date happens or doesn't happen. I feel more liberated and free in my choices now when I date and I think embracing the fact that I am more comfortable being alone really is making the difference. My family and friends are noticing the change in me and have commented on it often.
Now with the help of my family and friends supporting me and leaning heavily on my religious faith, I feel stronger and less fearful to do things on my own. I love being alone but not lonely.
photo credit: let's get lifted via photopin (license)