Why Are You Single?

I have gotten asked this question countless times throughout my adulthood.

This was an easy question to answer when I was in my teens.
Why was I single throughout my later teen years?
Because I lacked confidence.  My self esteem was at its lowest.
I didn't take care of myself the way I should have and could have because I simply didn't know better.
Which in turn, did nothing for the way I felt about myself.
And because I lived in a place where who I was and what I looked like didn't fit into any sort of norm at the time..
A Puerto Rican teen living in the Poconos - Chubby, wild hair unkempt hair, lazy, totally didn't fit it.

As time progressed, little things changed and when I hit 24, something in me changed.
I met someone who taught me by example how easy it was to stop caring about what other people think and to totally just focus on what I thought about myself.
I changed many things about myself and as time has progressed, going into my 30's, confidence in my looks or in myself, generally, is between 85-90% most times.  I have insecurities like most people.  Some leftover from my past, some that will linger throughout unless I do something about them.  But to say that I lack confidence or that my self esteem or self love isn't sufficient when it has been at an all time high (in the past 3-4 years especially), would be a lie.

I've never felt better.  There is ALWAYS room for improvement.
I could stand to lose a little more weight or just re-lose the weight I lost a couple of years back lol.
I could tweak a couple of things.
But I'm pretty much satisfied about the way I look and generally, how I feel about ME as a person overall.

So, why am I single?
I love that question.  -__-
Really.

I could say by choice.
I'm single because I refuse to settle.  Hear that one before?
Well, some of you dudes out there seem to want to convince yourselves that when we, women, say "I refuse to settle," it's that we mean we don't want the less attractive dudes or that we won't date broke dudes.
But no.  That's not quite it.

I refuse to settle for dishonesty, disloyalty, stupidity... .
I refuse to settle for someone I've already dated, given one, two, three chances to change and all of a sudden want to stroll in years later trying to their hardest to prove to me that this time will be "different."

I refuse to settle for someone who I have no feelings for or attraction.
See, I'm well aware that passion may or may not disappear with time when you're with someone, but if you fall in love, it doesn't matter.  And there are still feelings OF love there.  But I can't go into something with someone I have NO feelings for just for the sake of pleasing society.  It's got nothing to do with physical attraction.  I've dated men who were considered average or below average.  It is simply that beauty is in they eye of the beholder.  And if I see NO beauty in any part of that person, then they are not for me.

I'm single because I've been lied to, cheated on and God knows what else.  And I refuse to sit there while people continue to mistaken my kindness and generosity for stupidity or weakness.  Because I am strong.  And that might as well be another reason I am single.

I am single because I will not just get wrapped up in someone based on the fact that all of my friends and family are involved.  As much as I want it, it's not that serious.  I have been on my own my entire life and completely independent for the past 9 years.

I am single because someone who may present themselves in a pretty package have some sort of ugliness that lies underneath.  And I would rather not dabble in that regardless of how pretty and neat it looks upon presentation.  My instinct is always on point.

And if I see beauty in you, that beauty is above any flaw or mistakes you can commit.  Because that beauty shines overall.  Some may allow that beauty to tarnish overtime.  But if I call you BEAUTIFUL, it's because you are.  Regardless of anything.  And trust me, I don't see beauty in all things (see above).

Finally, I am single because the heart wants what it wants.  And I have loved people who do not love me in return.  Who will not love me in return.  Because no matter how "amazing" or "awesome" or "beautiful" or "gorgeous" or "smart" etc etc etc I am... they would just rather not.  Out of fear, selfishness, who knows?  And because when I love, I love with everything that I have.  I put my best foot forward.  No regrets, regardless of the consequences.  Because I don't love freely.  I don't let just anyone in regardless of what others may think.  And it takes me a lot of space and time to get over my feelings when they are this strong, for those who don't return them.  I'm not one to run into someone's arms because they're available for me.  And I will not lower my standards.  I'd rather live with the dull pain of knowing I will not have what I want because life just dealt me those cards.

So why am I single?
A complicated question.  There's no easy answer.
I guess it's a choice.  Not one I prefer.
But one I value.  Because above it all, I value myself and I respect my heart's needs and wants.
And I refuse to settle for anything less.

Why are YOU single?

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