Ah! A post about being Single, on Valentine’s Day, written by a married person. Aren't you dying to read this??
But I was single for hot second and I think that makes me qualified to write on the subject. Or it may not, but it’s my blog and I can write what I want.
I got married last year, and with that comes a lot of new experiences. I didn’t have a job in the beginning and we had to figure out the ends and outs of insurance. My car died and we had to buy a new one. We sold and bought a new home.
During the changes, a lot of well meaning people told me things like:
• “You registered for your gifts? You're so grown up!”
• “This is the real, adult stuff”
• “What can I say, being all grown up is hard”
• “You have a mortgage now, this makes you officially an adult!”
I know they meant well. But I heard it so often, and it made me a little confused. If I was just now becoming an adult, what was I doing all those years before? Wearing my Target #adulting shirts and living in some middle ground, just waiting to grow up?
Because even though I just did all these “big” things, I’ve felt like an adult for years. And it felt weird to me that some people didn’t view it that way.
I felt pretty grown up when my entire apartment flooded and we had deal with management, rental insurance, all while having to move everything out within few hours.
I felt pretty mature leading a group of college students to Brazil for a week (and we all came back alive, in one piece, and 10lbs+ heavier from the Pao de Queijo).
And when I was a director and oversaw an entire education department, with employees who had really hard personalities and really hard stories.
Or when I decided to leave an organization that meant the world to me. There was no one else there to tell me I had outgrown my role and needed to go. That was me, deciding for myself.
Marriage can be hard, sure. But do you know what’s easier now? Um, things like insurance, taxes, walking into crowded parties not alone, and let’s be honest, moving furniture and hanging heavy pieces on the walls. You always have someone in your corner, always helping with the logistics or technical. A live-in sounding board for all major decisions, and double checking the fine print.
When you're on your own, you don’t have that.
You read through the new hire papers on your own. You pour yourself a glass of wine and hope you got everything right as you work through Turbo Tax. You convince yourself that staying in is not an option and you go to party you’ve been debating about, by yourself. And you pull out the 40 year old drill your dad gave you and you hang your own curtains.
And I know you don't need my stamp of approval on days like this. You don’t need someone to tell you any of those things.
But maybe you just need a little validation that you're doing it. You're doing all those things that you didn't think you could do on your own. Really-- think about 3 years ago, 5 years ago, 10 years ago. Aren't you proud of how brave you've been on your own?
You’re out there looking through applications and figuring out grad school.
You're building up your career exactly way you wanting to.
You’re reading through medical diagnosis, bills, and carrying heavy, heavy burdens.
You’re buying houses and changing jobs and traveling the world, and you're doing it on your own.
I hope in this place in life - whether it’s the one you wanted or one you’d never thought you’d be in- you know that you're just as much doing the real, hard things as your friend on Facebook who post about her 3 kids. You’re just as much an adult even if you're still paying rent, or you’ve yet to buy a Instapot ( honestly, I haven't either).
I hope that while your waiting on the all things you are waiting on, you at least take time to look back and see how far you’ve actually come.
And that you're proud of things you have today because of the work, patience and prayers of yesterday.
And how much best there is to come.