Many readers may not realize it but I was a single parent, raising two boys with no help or financial support, for six years. Not a single date. It was the worst of times. It was the best of times. My sons are my best friends, we are incredibly close. Grief will do that to you.
I remember vividly the first Christmas I was alone. I had never realized how many happy couples and two-parent families were on Christmas television and movies. I experienced loneliness on a level I cannot even describe. The whole world seemed to be happily cohabitating except for me. Loneliness will do that to you.
It’s Valentines Day, a happy day for young couples and established relationships. For some of us, however, there will be no flowers, no chocolates, no wet kisses. For many people Valentines Day is a screaming reminder that no one loves them, that they are alone. No Hallmark Cards or chocolate-covered strawberries or rose pedals on your bed.
It is important to remember that today does not define who you are. It is, and I know this sounds cliché, just another day. It may be a painful reminder but like most reminders, it will pass. You are fine just the way you are.
You don’t need someone else to complete you. It’s a lie. I found out the hard way that, as John Candy says in the movie Cool Runnings, “if you’re not enough without one, you’ll never be enough with one.” No one else can fill that hole in your heart, we’ll all let you down eventually. Wisdom is understanding that wholeness can only be found within. No human, no beautiful woman or man, can fix you. Date enough and you will find out the hard way.
As I tell my patients all the time, “Never date till you don’t have to”.
8 thoughts on “Great Expectations – Valentines Edition”
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Such an excellent post, Scott. I can’t tell you how much I agree.
You can be in a pretty great place with yourself and still lonely. You can believe that a partner won’t complete you, that you are complete and worthy all on your own. And still want a partner and be sad you don’t have one. Especially on Valentine’s Day. Just saying.
Just before my husband and I got together – I was in a place where I was happy with my life. I no longer “needed” a relationship to make me happy… and then I found him. I’ll date for a while now – but because I want to. I’m not looking for a relationship or a lifelong partnership – I’m looking to meet new people. When I’m happy with my life exactly the way it is – that’s when I know I’ll be ready for a relationship.
If you don’t like your own company – why would anyone else?
Love it! That’s always been my philosophy too. 🙂
Thank you for the wonderfully healthy perspective for those of us who are single. I bought myself flowers (the silk kind that will last forever!)
I commend you for raising your boys alone (BTW, that automatically makes you an attractive man to some women – just sayin’) Wishing you a lifetime of happiness, alone or not.
Life is good.
It’s so attractive I didn’t have a date for six years! Haha now you tell me…
Good for you for buying flowers, you get it.