Tuesday, February 09, 2010

There are worse things...

It seemed like when I went through my divorce, I didn't know a single person who wasn't in happy, perfect, no doubt passionate, coupledom, I felt so totally alone and I thought the sadness would never go away.

Recently, a couple of friends have started down that road my heart hurts for them because I remember what that felt like but it's also made me think...

I remember my Aunt saying to me when I was recently divorced and still utterly devastated, "There are worse things than being alone." I certainly didn't think so at the time.

She knew a little something about the worse things, she had a rough life with a man who while brilliant, suffered addiction and mental health problems. He died suddenly in a fire, leaving her a poor widow and single mother. I know my Dad helped her when he could but she had a rough time of it. She got a job... did what she had to do... No matter what happened, she was always warm and generous, full of laughter and good humor, treating my sisters and I as her own. The many summers I spent with her made me who I am and I loved her. She never re-married, I know she was asked, she told me she preferred to be alone.

Now I understand what she meant. Few things are as exhausting as trying to make someone happy when they just aren't. Dancing around frantically trying to make something work that just doesn't anymore, even if it once did, sucks the life right out of you. Holding it together when it's irreparably broken, it's a waste of energy on a monumental scale. I know why people do it, I know why I did it...

I am alone, I have my son but I've been on my own for nearly 8 years. Some of that time I've had a romantic interest but I haven't remarried or moved in. And it's OK, I'm happy, life is good, I have energy, I relish doing what I want when I want to. As my son gets older (he just turned 16) things just keep getting easier, our relationship keeps getting better and life seems brighter.

Valentines Day is this weekend all those ads... all that pressure... meh... so what? who cares? It's just a day. Would it make me happy if I met the perfect man to be my best friend, lover & partner in crime? Sure it would... but I'm not hanging around waiting for it to happen.

I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that my Aunt was right... as she usually was... there are so many worse things than being alone.

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