Truth Bombs

I write this post with full awareness that I am surrounded by loved-ones who are dealing with massive stresses – family members dying, partners with disabilities, illness, work issues, etc. I am acutely aware of my privilege even without these reminders and I’m writing this post anyway, even though I may regret the vulnerable overshare later.

Maybe I’m just doing it for me. I suppose that’s what this blog is for anyway, right? Narcissistic emotional navel-gazing?

Every morning I wake up with gratitude. My toes can be wiggled. I have a roof over my head. Friendships. A career. A sweet doggo. Parents who are still here. So much to be thankful for.

Lately though I am also hit with massive grief while also holding this gratitude.

The relationship with The Lovely Man I mentioned in a previous entry is now over. He ended things essentially over concern that we would grow too close and that when things would have to end, it would be painful. For both of us.

He was not wrong.

Among other incompatibilities, he’s only staying with family in the area for a while and will return home when his tourist visa ends. I know what you might be thinking – Maybe you’re meant for each other and you could work it out!?

It’s a lovely sentiment, but I’m not one to try and convince a man to alter his life for me, especially when he has goals to accomplish in his home country (which is the case here). I think we really enjoyed being around each other and ending things was not my idea, but I know that his impending departure would cause anxious internal conflict for me before too long anyway. That doesn’t make for an easy-going or emotionally authentic me to be romantically involved with. And making it casual doesn’t work for me either. I’m an invest-in-it-and-see-where-it-goes-or-don’t-do-it-at-all kind of person.

It’s a really weird thing to wish you had more time with someone but know more time would mean more sadness, one way or another. I am relieved to not feel the degree of hurt I know is possible, but I simultaneously wish we’d had an opportunity to see the flaws that made us not work (aside from the very obvious ones).

This old, familiar loneliness I feel now is amplified by the end of the nice thing I had with The Lovely Man, and compounded with my country not giving a shit about women.

The 42 year old Lovely Man is a kind and decent human who has plenty of time to find his ideal (and fertile) partner. Hell, he could even travel the world for years before “settling down”. Statistically, men his age are at their most desirable now and will continue to be into their early-fifties. That’s great for him. When he’s ready all he has to do is find compatible women, be himself while on dates, and then choose. I am happy for him. Genuinely.

The fact that his reality and mine are polar opposites inadvertently contributes to this deep sadness I carry. While men like him are “a catch”, studies show that women are at their peak of attractiveness at 25 then become increasingly less desirable after that. So, here I am at 46 and waking every morning feeling like trash. And not even the recyclable kind.

Before you tell me some variation of the following;

You’re not that old.
It will happen! Just be patient!
He’ll show when you’re not looking.
You just need to look harder.
The universe knows when you are being negative and you won’t find each other.
You’re so independent, you don’t need a man!

If you’re convinced it won’t happen, it won’t! (gaslight much?)
They’re nothing but a pain anyway
You are exceptional. Don’t ever think otherwise.
Have you tried…?
You have a dog and loving friends and family

Just don’t.

I have lived all of my adult life trying to learn about myself and build my character, with the hope that it will make me as interesting as possible for the partner I will (not) find. Is my life enriched by all the things I do to challenge my mind, be a decent human, and push myself creatively? Sure.

Right now though it feels like it was also just filling time. And when you think of it as filling time it really leaves you wondering what the fuck you’re even doing here. (This is not a cry for help).

I have purpose in my life and things that make me content; making people laugh, being a good friend and daughter, giving back to others in some way, being decent at my job, being a good listener, asking “How can I help?” and meaning it.

But I no longer truly believe that I will find the purpose I yearn for most – loving someone, being loved, and building a life together.

I am surrounded by examples of single women who are “strong and independent”, and I know that some might look at them and think “Oh she chose to not have a relationship. She wanted to focus on her career!” Or perhaps some variation of “She’s so independent no man could tie her down!” or maybe even just “It’s because she’s a bitch.”

Those thoughts may be true, but it also may be true that people tell themselves this lie so they don’t feel bad for the strong and independent woman who goes home to an empty house with no one special there to give her a hug, ask how her day was, and then annoy her by answering “Whatever you wanna have is fine!” when she asks where they should order takeout from.

I know that people probably see me with my salty quips and my no-actually-I-can-do-that-myself persona and think the same.

I did not choose my scenario. Along with boatloads of wonderful things, I got a large love life tote bag full of dodged bullets and disappointments. I learned from all of them, but I am tired of being a student. I feel like I have so much love to give and nowhere to put it.

Eventually I will have enough distance from this recent experience and forget how it feels to have someone (truly) special around. I won’t feel like I’m filling time as much as living my life. Maybe then I’ll get a break from those heavy truth bombs that land with a thud in my chest, reminding me, You, Cydney, are not wanted.

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