Now that I have been officially single for the past 9 months (unofficially for almost the past 2 years), I’ve spent a lot of alone time. After I became a divorcee in January 2011, I dated around for a while. I was searching for a connection with somebody because I had experienced it for so long with my ex-wife. I didn’t want to be or feel alone. It felt good knowing that there was a potential for me to be with someone. To share something together. But throughout all my dates, I never got to that point. I guess it wasn’t my time.
Now that I have put away dating (for an undisclosed amount of time), I am re-living alonehood since the last time I was single in 1999. It is enthralling sometimes to feel that freedom I haven’t felt in so long. I’m not tied down with demands. I don’t have to constantly think about a significant other and how I can please her. Maybe that’s some of what was wrong with my marriage. I spent so much time making her happy that I had lost what it meant to really be happy myself. I gave and gave but received very little in return. Now that I have been freed from the obligation of being an object of happiness, I’ve felt so much freedom. There is nothing wrong with being part of making someone happy but when you are the entirety of their happiness; when you constantly have to come up with ways to please that person or else they make you feel guilty, something needs to change.
Other times, my aloneness is oppressive and dreary. It is like a domineering atmosphere that surrounds me. It is hard to shake it off and put on a happy face. Why hide what I’m really feeling? I don’t give into depression like I used to but I sure hang around that edge close to dropping into a chasm of self-loathing sometimes. I’ve been there in that deep dark place before and I won’t go there again. I know it didn’t do me any good and it sure didn’t improve my deepest relationships.
I feel like I’m in a tug-of-war between wanting something now and waiting in long-suffering patience for something to eventually happen. If I only experience this alone time to the fullest, I will come out of it in the end with so much more. But I want to have someone to share these moments with. I have so much to offer but no one to offer it to right now. I don’t want to have to put off dating. I want to be at the point right now where I can give myself fully to someone with no strings attached. Where I can completely trust that person and not feel any hesitation.
But I know that I am not there yet. I can’t possibly go there now. Maybe this alone time is shaping and morphing me into a better man. Maybe being alone shouldn’t be connected with feelings of yearning and longing to not be alone. Being alone isn’t always bad. I should be content in who I am without standing next to someone for support. Don’t get me wrong, I do have the support of loved ones but I want to be a man who can be content in my own decisions. I am there, but maybe I just need to be here for a while longer.
I enjoy my routines. I get what I want to get done around my house in my time. I come home from work and spend a relaxing moment on my front porch feeling the cool Colorado evening breeze around me. It is in those moments when I am absolutely alone that those feelings of yearning for someone else melt away. I am truly content in who I am at that time.
Seasons in life come and go. When I was married, I’ve been in moments where the deep intimacy I shared with my wife was something close to heaven. I’ve also experienced moments when I was alone hiking on a mountain top. When I was alone with myself, my thoughts and God. I’ve gone through trials, exhilarating feelings, deep sorrows, intimate moments, extreme self-loathing, victories, defeats, second chances and pit-falls. This season of aloneness, I know, will one day pass. It is how I view it, who I look to for guidance and what actions I take that will determine what path I will travel on. The only fate I believe in is the one I make for myself and the will of my Creator.