Day Eighteen: Restless
Restless. That’s one word to describe it. That feeling that growled at me through high school, nibbled at me through most of college and attacked me at the end of college and after graduation.
The feeling of restlessness.
Restlessness became a close companion of mine as a result of the gnawing fear of being alone, never marrying. My restlessness didn’t pressure me too much as a teenager, mainly because my brain kept winning out, assuring me that I had plenty of time. My restlessness began pestering me in college, when it seemed like a new friend or acquaintance every month was posting a photo on Facebook of her newly bejeweled left ring finger. Meanwhile, I stayed in a relationship that everyone around me – and, if I’m being honest with myself, I too – knew was wrong.
Time is running out, my restlessness would whisper. Even people younger than you are getting married. Better hurry while supplies last.
By the end of college, with three years of a failed relationship and a short-lived dud behind me and a fading apparition of a dead-end by my side, the restlessness began to bully me.
Why are you wasting your time here? it asked. Either jump ship, or get what you want here. You’re going to end up with a divorced father of two if you don’t do something. Not that there’s anything wrong with that, but it won’t be new to him. It won’t be special. That’s what you’ll get; someone to whom marriage is old hat. Is that what you want? Just keep dawdling.
And so the lies from my restlessness continued.
Until I severed our bond less than a year later.
I was 23 years old. Not exactly an old hag. And I had more friends who weren’t married than were. I wasn’t alone. And even if they all got married, that didn’t mean I was alone. I’ve only got one life, and I chose to start living it.
And I don’t plan to stop doing that any time soon.