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Is being single a punishment or a blessing?

By Alexa Armstrong | Managing Editor
On May 23, 2012

Once upon a thirsty and thoughtful Thursday night, my roommates and I arrived at a rather horrific place: our pasts. We reminisced and stewed for about an hour over our failed relationships. I looked from face to face thinking, "These people are fabulous. Hell, even I am a tiny bit fabulous; how is it that we are single?" This question haunts us; it haunts all who have experienced being perpetually single.

In a world where love don't got a thing to do with it, relationships have a shelf life of a few months and technology has rendered meeting anyone face to face useless and impossible. It is not hard to wind up feeling sorry for yourself. Is being single a punishment or a blessing?

I live in a world of choice, of privilege and endless opportunity. We all do. If you have a shirt on your back and a roof over your head, you are luckier than most.

Living in the United States definitely has its perks but, ultimately, freedom is what people crave and all this can be yours for the low, low price of... being born here. And not everyone is lucky enough to fall into that percentage.

Even though the hand I was dealt was a rather lucky one, I cannot help but dream of the greener grass on the other side of the globe. How wonderful would it be to not be held responsible for solidifying your future all on your own? To not have to find Prince Charming, make him fall in love with you and live happily ever after?

In another life, I could have had an arranged marriage; I could already have children. I cannot help but admire the simplicity. However, I would rather not have to worry about how many goats I am worth.
It is a daunting and sometimes dangerous thing to think of how different your life could have been if you had made different choices. It is too easy to get lost in the world of "what if." Let the downward spiral begin: "What if I never broke up with him?" "Would I be happy?"

"Would I have convinced him to commit and live the life society expects of us?" "What if he was the one?"
After much contemplation, I laugh in the face of the "what if," and in the faces of those questions that keep you up at night, those horrible questions that keep you from moving on and finding happiness. Do not give them the time of day, or night, or any time at all for that matter. Those questions do not deserve your time.

You see, I am a strong believer in fate. I am a strong believer in "What is meant to be will somehow find a way to be." Without my faith in love, where would I be? I will tell you: I would be sitting somewhere, falling victim to these silly questions; they would consume me.

This being said, you cannot avoid grieving over failed relationships, but do not regret the decisions you made, for they make us who we are. They make us strong. Solitude makes you strong. To some, it may be the biggest challenge they have yet to face. To others, it is safe but either way having the choice, is in itself a blessing.

Do not feel sorry for yourself because you are "alone," because at the end of the day, you are never truly alone. There are worse things in life than being condemned to singledom. At least someone is not contemplating your dowry right now. Chin up, soldier.

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