While I just recently graduated college, most of my friends are already married or in the process of engagement. One particularly impatient friend even has a baby on the way. Being the selfish single lady that I am, I’ve noticed that their exclusive partnerships are causing problems for me. Most annoyingly, I’m struggling to find a roommate because all of my friends have relocated or have moved in with their significant others. This has left me completely alone on my parent’s couch eating Ben & Jerry’s out of the carton while watching late-night reruns of The Nanny.
Sure, I’ve dated. I’ve tried men in every variety: soccer players, car enthusiasts, photographers, frat boys, and even the editor of the university newspaper. In spite of my endeavors to find the perfect man, it seems that every one of them is flawed. Men who ask for loans, military men who are never in the States, younger men with step-mothers my age, older men with daughters my age. No one seems up to standard. I’ve been told that I’m too picky and I should settle because I’m 22 and there’s still no ring in sight.
Songs, TV shows, movies, commercials, and even billboards are filled with messages that having a significant other will make you want to listen to Shania Twain’s “You’re Still the One” on repeat while hurrying home to your rose-petaled bedroom after a long eight hours of being away from your “other half.”
Even completely non-romantic products are marketed towards filling some kind of void. I’ve even been tempted to call Just Breaks because “they really do care.” If only finding Mr. Right was as easy as installing new break-pads.
I was so stuffed full of “get married” messages that I was beginning to vomit teddy bears, flowers, and diamonds. Then last week after my mom pried Ben & Jerry from my arms and sent Fran flat lining into a screen of black, I decided it was time to stop being lonely and start being alone.
Lonely is always alone but alone is not always lonely. If I’ve learned anything from Beyoncé and Jay Z, it’s that all the single ladies have it pretty good, and having 99 problems isn’t so bad. Before they were able to become the celebrity power couple they are now, Beyoncé and Jay Z had to become celebrities in their own right. I’m no celebrity (though I’m sure I have quite the blog following), but I know that to be happy, I’ve got to embrace being single.
When I think realistically about my married friends, they’re not constantly skipping through daisy fields and coming home every night to strawberries, champagne, and bubble baths. They’re complaining about how the other doesn’t clean the place-mats, complaining about in-laws, and complaining about how they don’t spend enough time with their friends. But most of all, they’re complaining about money.
In fact, financial issues are the cause of a great many divorces. Yes, I’m single and I’m not living a fairy-tale romance and I don’t have someone to curl up to at night (though I do have a poodle who is just lovely). However, being single also means that I don’t have to share; not my time, not my friends, and not my money.
The liberation of being financially independent is almost as intoxicating as the martinis I’ve taken to drinking with my girlfriends on Thursday nights. Each week we meet at the bar, order our drinks, and live out our clichéd fantasy of being single and loving it. Now that we’ve realized we can keep our money, our friends, and our lives while still keeping men in our beds, we’ve just got one question for you: Why be with only one Mr. Right when you can be with seven Mr. Right Now’s?