Any question I had about whether it may be time to at least consider dating was recently answered by my six year-old goddaughter. As I gathered my things to leave her princess-themed birthday party, she looked at me with eyes full of concern (maybe even pity) and asked, “Terri, have you found a husband yet?” I did a quick scan of the room to see exactly before whom I had just been put all the way on blast before giving a demure, “Not yet honey.”
After pondering what obviously to her was a most unfortunate circumstance, my goddaughter suddenly lit up with excitement and offered, “Maybe when Jaxon is older, you can marry him!” Coming from the same little girl who has made it clear that she one day plans to marry her own father, I smiled and said, “That’s a great idea since I’m sure that I could never find a man better than Jaxon anyway.” Satisfied that all was once again right with the world, she gave me a hug and skipped off.
Later on that evening, I thought about how I had been without a man for so long that even a six-year old felt compelled to say something to me about it. I do not know what is more alarming–the fact that the last time that I was in the romantic presence of a man was when I conceived my son, who is now 16 months old (I’ll pause while you do the math), or that I am not particularly distressed over the fact. Being relationship-free for this long for a serial monogamist like me is BIG.
Now let me be clear. Not at all am I suggesting that I dance around my apartment every day singing, I’m-Still-Singleeee to the beat of Pharell’s “Happy” song. But I am content. Content with growing my wings as a new mom. Content with not having to divide my time between my son and a significant other. Content with being drama-free while continuing to get to know me.
While right now I am enjoying the single space that I am in, for the long haul, I know that I won’t. The absolute last person who I want to morph into is THE MOM. She is that person who used to be a cledgy (classy and edgy), interesting, funny, and vivacious woman, who over time, transformed into the all day, every day legging and t-shirt wearing clone who no longer bothers to get her nails or hair done, do whatever it is that she used to love to do, speaks no language other than momish (as in my son/daughter this; when my kids that; or did I tell you about the time when insert child’s name here…). THE MOM has abandoned all of her friends, interests, and even herself to live in MOMDOM with the rest of THE MOMS for all of the days of her life.
I love Love and look forward to the day when I return to that magical place. But until that time, I am readying myself. As Iyanla would say, I am “doing my work.” Eating healthier, maintaining a weekly gym, yoga, and pilates schedule so that I will be in my best physical health. Reflecting and looking within more than I ever have in my life. And, most importantly, cultivating my spirituality. Without a doubt, faith and a higher power have saved me time and time again.
As I continue on my journey, I am completely open to all of the wonders that life has just for me–including that special man. I have no idea what he looks like, but know exactly who he is. Some bumps and bruises along the way have finally given me the wisdom to reconsider my Must-Have list.
A handsome face has been replaced with a whole heart. Swag has been scratched off for sensitivity. Character has shot up to the top of the list, with loyalty running a close second. And as long as he welcomes my very cute Plus-One tagging along on our adventure, I will meet him in that magical place called Love.