A while ago there was what became a rather heated discussion on the single parent’s board of BBC. Not to point any fingers, but the person at the center of it (who was at the center of it because we all care about her and worry when she makes certain choices) made a comment that ruffled a bunch of feathers. My own included.
The comment was “must be nice to be so wonderfully happy and perfect…oh…and alone”. This was in reference to those of us giving her heck for her choices (a couple of women in particular), and called to mind comments she had made about how she felt she was a nothing if she wasn’t in a relationship.
Generally speaking, I am happy. And confident. Stronger than I ever imagined. I am a single mother. Am I alone?
Alone, to me, is sitting by myself on a life raft in the middle of the pacific, waiting for someone to rescue me before I run out of food and water. Inactive and futile. Passively and dejectedly waiting.
I am not alone. I have Cameron. I have my Mom, Bill, Dad, Janice, Betty, Nana, Joanne and Paul, Christina, Heidi, Phillip and Maite, Mimi and Mike, all my downstairs neighbours past and present, all the moms I met through Mother Goose, Drop-ins, Playgym, the list goes on. The circles of the people in my life just keep ever expanding.
So what if there isnt’ a man “in my life”? Do I need one? Am I less of a person because I don’t have one? Because I haven’t found that right person to be with? Am I flawed internally and my lack of partner just indicates this horrifying chasm?
I refuse to subscribe to the sentiments expressed in that Show Me the Money movie. I’m not looking for someone to complete me. I AM complete, not broken, not undeveloped, not un-whole. There is nothing missing that would make me more … me. Of course I still have much to learn, and I will change with time. But I’m not lacking because my home lacks an adult male. And that lack of adult male presence doesn’t indicate a major flaw in myself that makes me unacceptable, either.
I’m not just bobbing on a liferaft in the middle of an ocean, helpless. My boat has a humungous motor on it, thanks. I have direction, power, purpose. Maybe someday I’ll find a ‘first mate’, or perhaps co-captain would be a better phrase for what I want. But until then, I’m complete and not alone.
I am on my own. There is a difference. A big one.