If you're singing along with the Natasha Bedingfield song in your head right now, give yourself a cookie. No really. Go get a cookie! It's ok. I'll wait.
Alright now that that is out of the way...
I've been single now for the longest stretch of time since I was 12. Basically since I discovered boys don't have cooties. I'm what my friends like to refer to as a serial monogamist. I don't think this description is entirely accurate considering I didn't start sleeping with boys until JJ, but its true I have in the past gone from relationship to relationship with barely a breather. I also have a habit of recycling ex-boyfriends, or dating people that I've known FOREVER. They weren't all serious relationships. I mean how serious can you really be at 12? Nonetheless I have always had a boy on my arm, one waiting in the wings, and a follow up prospect to him too. I was a shameless flirt all through high school, but all the boys knew it was a game. You could look, but you couldn't touch.
The idea of being forever alone was terrifying a year ago. I moved out on my own in October of 2012, and went into a bit of a 'thing' with an old friend. It was silly and pointless and going no where despite our 'feelings' for each other. That January I met a nice guy at a friends party and we went out a few times. We were watching TV one night when it hit me. I didn't really want this. I wasn't ready to date. I didn't want to get to know anyone when I barely knew myself.
That's right. 27 years old. A degree, a career, a child, and no flipping clue who I was. That's scary. Frightening. I'm supposed to be raising a child, helping her to figure out her way in life, but I don't know my own? My mother had told me for years, 'stop hopping from relationship to relationship. Slow down. Take some time to get to know you!' I dismissed her. She was my mom. She didn't know what she was talking about and just wanted to run my life. I finally realized she had just been trying to help me. In all that man hopping I hadn't found love or security. I'd found a lot of trouble. The older boy who was just trying to get one thing. The emotionally abusive boy, who convinced me I was a crazy pill head. The bad boy that I could save. The elusive boy I could chase. The perfect boy I could be a trophy for. The project. The rebel. The saint.
I'll be the first to admit, I have some Daddy/abandonment issues. I remember relaying the following to a therapist once:
My birth father gave me up for adoption. My adopted father left the marriage. My grandfather died. Then my uncle disowned me instead of dealing with the pain of his loss. I've been abandoned by every man that was supposed to stick by me and support me.
She was ridiculously impressed with my self awareness. I wish I'd known about this gif then.
I spent the last 12 months getting to know Whitney. Really getting to know her. Enjoying the quiet and the solitude. Enjoying the underwear dance parties with Boomer. Enjoying answering to no one, but God. Learning that I like classic movies, and documentaries. That I actually can't stand a lot of shows that I spent hours of my life watching so I could have something to talk about with some guy. I actually don't like boy shorts, especially one's with seems up the front (atomic wedgies anyone?) and threw out every pair I'd bought to make a guy happy. I like my hair wild and crazy. I like it straight too, but it's my hair not to be tamed and cajoled to make another person more comfortable. I like wearing too much makeup sometimes. I like wearing heels even though they make me 6ft tall. I like singing in the shower, and the car, and the kitchen, and pretty much every where else. I like being goofy and silly. I like spending hours looking at expensive shit I can't afford. Yet. I like thinking deeply. I like reading books quietly to myself. I like my face. I like my body. I like my spirit. I like my temper. I like my heart. I LIKE EVERYTHING ABOUT ME.
The funny thing is now that I've learned all this, I'm not sure I want to share it with anyone. I'm not sure I want to lay it all out there for someone to say 'Yes! I like you!'...or "Nah...not my thing.' There is a part of my that wants to cook for someone, to get dressed up and be on someone's arm, to share my life again...
But there's no rush.