dropping like flies

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

I hosted my first-ever bridal shower this weekend. We had tea and scones and pretty little sandwiches with the crusts cut off. There were presents and scrapbook pages and cut roses in vases. And it was good. And I hope memorable.

Lately, it seems like everyone I know is engaged or married or having babies. So very few of us singles are left. I have weddings to go to in March, April and May. Juliet, my roommate from grad school, is having her second baby; my friend Andy, who was sanity in a SLO world, is expecting his first. Shara and Serena got engaged over Christmas; Ali saw the judge.

And I find myself battling the questions. Everyone asks: When? And when? And when?

Really, does it matter? What if the answer was a resounding "NEVER"? I mean, what is so wrong with being unmarried?

Apparently, everything, according to our society. I was listening to a radio segment on Friday about how you pretty much get shafted if you never get married. Sorry, no tax break for you. No support system.

And then of course, there's the social stigma of the whole thing; terms like "old maid" are fun, aren't they? And your family (or perhaps, just my family) thinks you're some kind of freak. And they constantly worry that because you are unmarried and a woman, you are unable to function because there is no one to take care of you. What about being able to take care of yourself? What about being independent? Apparently, that is socially unacceptable and totally unheard of.

Don't get me wrong -- I am not against marriage. (Although I am kind of against weddings -- they always seem to be a source of a ridiculous amount of stress. It makes me sick to see my friends literally cry over the planning. Isn't this supposed to be a happy time?) I just don't like the timelines and the expectations and the judgment that comes with not living your life the way everyone thinks you should.

When the time is right, the time is right. And you don't need a ring or a dress or a new name to know it.

And if that time doesn't come, so be it. There is nothing wrong with that. Nothing wrong at all.
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