Tuesday, August 23, 2011

What are you waiting for?

Recently, I bought a blender. Perhaps it seems like a simple, boring task to you, but it wasn’t for me. Maybe when I tell you why, you’ll find it depressing, but I don’t care; I find it empowering. It goes like this: We each have our own list of things. The things we are waiting to get married to do, or the things we are doing that we’re waiting to get married to stop doing. Things that don’t by definition go along with getting married. For example, some wait to rent/buy their own apartment/house until marriage. “I’m not going to move out of my parents’ house yet, I’ll wait until I get married to do that,” some say. For others the list includes buying nice furniture instead of something temporary or nice artwork for their walls and just leaving them blank. After all, they reason, what use is there to decorating when you’re hoping to get married and move out soon? This realization that there were things I was waiting to get married to do, that I don’t have to wait for marriage to do, hit me after I wrote the short poem below, several months ago:

"There is no one out there for me," I tell myself.
Not because it is true, but because I need to believe it.
No more sitting around waiting for that guy to show up
Time to stop waiting and start living,
Living my life as the best me that I can be,
Instead of constantly making sure I am ready,
Ready for someone else to enter into my life,
And suddenly be the most important person in it.
All this waiting, all this trying to be ready,
Is preventing myself from the one thing,
That is true preparation,
Living my life and doing the things I do,
Fulfilling the purpose I was meant for.
But if I don't make room for him to come in
Then perhaps when he shows up
I'll have to stop everything and create space
Rework my life to make room for him to fit in it,
And I want the space to be all ready for him.
It’s time to stop leaving a big empty hole in my life,
Waiting for someone to fill that empty, deep, hole.
My life should be full right now, even without him
And his life should be full without me
And when we meet we will weave our two separate full lives together
Uniting two complete pieces, merging into one
Instead of taking two half lives and only together making a whole.
"There is no one out there for me," I tell myself.
Not because it is true, but because I need to believe it.
I need to believe it to move on.

It took a certain event in my life to create this wake up moment, and while it wasn’t a positive event that did it, I needed the wake up call because I hadn’t even realized that I was waiting around. It was completely subconscious, until it dawned on me that like most singles, I too have a list of the things we are not doing because we are waiting to get married to do them. “I’ll do that when I get married,” we say.

Well, it’s time to move on with my life. When I say move on, I don’t mean give up. I don’t mean taking the opposite approach and saying “Well, I’m never getting married, so I might as well do all those things I was waiting to do.” That would be depressing. What I mean is not living life around the possibility of getting married. Why wait for something that I have no idea when it will happen? I don’t know when I am going to get married and here is an idea: It doesn’t matter when. Hashem has it all planned out and I have to stop putting my life on hold.

So, I bought a blender. I always figured a nice blender was one of those things you get at your wedding shower, or as a wedding gift. Why bother investing in one now? Then I realized: Why wait to get married to buy a blender if I really want one? But yet, buying a blender seemed to symbolize giving up hope, as though I was saying, “OK, I’m probably never going to get married, so I might as well buy a blender.” So, I put it off. But now, I am done waiting. And if the right guy shows up tomorrow, well, I’ll figure it out. Telling myself that, “there is no one out there for me” might sound depressing, but pretending that it’s true changes how I live my life. Waiting to find the right guy is hard enough, no need to make it harder by making yourself wait for other things as well. Do what you need to do to be happy with your life.