This is a note to all of my well meaning family and friends who have recently asked about this ‘spinster phase’ I’m going through and what the reasons for it are (it isn’t a phase but we’ll get to that). Now, I’m only going to explain this once and if you insist on bringing this subject up time and again, I’ll simply refer you back to this blog post, so here goes:
First, I’ve already written a post about just what spinster means and how I, and others in the blog world, are seeking to redefine it, which you can find here…this is about what it doesn’t mean.
Spinster does not mean that I have sworn off men or women or dating or sex or love. In fact I’m probably in many ways more open to all of those things than I’ve been in the past because I have a far better understanding of what my needs are and where my boundaries lay. And one of the most important realizations I have had about myself is that I have a much happier existence living my life on my own. This doesn’t mean I don’t like company or companionship, and goodness knows that I’m not one to give up sex for any extended period of time. As for love, meaning the romantic kind, I like being wooed as much as the next girl, and I do date (when I actually have the time) but I’m not looking for any sort of permanent or monogamous attachment. I’m also not one to publicly broadcast my romantic entanglements, so just because I’m not getting all gooey-pink-roses about some guy or girl, doesn’t necessarily mean I don’t have a love interest in my life.
Spinster does not mean I’m living a lonely existence where I trudge through life resigned to being forever alone while my heart dries up into bitter, hard little pea. I am choosing to live my life as a woman who is not looking to for a romantic forever. I’m walking my own path and it is quite likely that there may be individuals who wander along that path with me from time to time. Love can be found anywhere, often unexpectedly and I’m certainly not going to kick it out the door when I come across it. I will enjoy it while it’s here, and I won’t try to cling to it should it start to fade.
Spinster does not mean that I am against coupling off or living together or marriage (heck I performed a wedding last January and was happy to do it). What it does mean is that this is not an option I’m seeking for myself. I’m just not interested in that kind of relationship. I really, really, really like living alone. I enjoy the freedom that comes with not having to take one particular person into account when I make decisions. My friends and my family are important parts of my life, and were I to be faced with some choice that might take me far away from those relationships; I’d certainly take that into consideration. Community is important to me, and I’ve been carried through some very hard times by my friends but I don’t have to consult anyone about how I spend my money, or if I want to change jobs, or if I want to go out or stay in, and any mess I make is my own.
My life has its ups and downs like anyone else’s does, and I really like the direction it is headed in right now. I’m content most of the time, and while I have lonely moments they are rare and have more to do with wanting understanding in a particular moment, and very little to do with companionship. I’m happy with the choices I’ve made.
And finally, before all you well meaning, caring folks start to say things like “oh, you just haven’t found the right person yet” and other such platitudes, I’ll say this: I have found the right person, and that person is me. Yep me, in all my solitary, cat loving, wine sipping, spinster glory…and you know, that’s quite enough.