Single and 'in a relationship' - How can that be?
For most of my adult life I have been single. And for much of that single life, I carried single baggage.
This baggage was made up of lots of different ideals and beliefs around being single.
A big part of that baggage was me really wanting to be in a relationship with a man, and to the outside eye, I looked to be keen and open to one, but there was a layer of protection that kept me not as open to men as I appeared. I had built a wall of protection that was actually keeping men out. It’s a bit hard to put in words, but it’s like the words were coming out of my mouth that I wanted to be in a relationship, but inside I was actually a bit scared and not sure how to be in one and if it would work if I was, so I was also protecting myself against one at the same time.
The baggage also consisted of that feeling that I was missing out on something by not being in a relationship; that I was not part of a ‘thing’ that much of the world was a part of. And part of me felt I was not complete unless I was in a relationship with a man.
So I went in and out of looking for one, going on and off dating sites, and seeking the counsel of friends and counsellors when the going got tough. I was given advice from “You don’t kick a goal sitting in the grandstand” to “You just need to let go and stop looking, and then he will come to you”. Confusing heh!
It was quite a tumultuous time for me as I had given quite a chunk of my self-worth over to this; this wanting to be in a relationship and feeling less because I was not in one.
It’s important to note my terminology here…I wanted to be “in a relationship”.
A few years ago I hit the ‘jack-pot’ and found myself in a relationship and was over the moon – even marriage was on the cards so a lifetime of being ‘in a relationship’. To cut a longish story short, it did not eventuate and we separated a couple of years later.
At this point, I saw the metaphorical single baggage sitting in the corner, waiting to be picked up again, but this time I was like…. whoa up there girl, stop the train, we are not going there again.
So I took myself off to Northern New South Wales to participate in a Relationships workshop run by Universal Medicine. To be honest, whilst I was going to the workshop to learn about living life without baggage, I also went to confirm that I was ‘right’ about the ending of the relationship and that my partner had been in the wrong. Well that picture did not last very long in this life-changing 1-day workshop.
Serge Benhayon, founder of Universal Medicine, presented much that day and my two key takeaways were that I was out-sourcing love and that we are ‘in relationships’ ALL the time, with lots of people.
First up, the out-sourcing bit. Straight up, we are LOVE – 'Love is the essence of all, it is where we come from, who we really are, what we are made of…’ [Serge Benhayon]. Deep within us we know that, but for many reasons we choose not to live this love. We can find ourselves living our hurts, our frustrations, or working super hard being buried under a mountainous to-do list, or we can be super hard on ourselves. During these times we are so often not prepared to be this love, and hence not bring it to ourselves. So in my words, we out-source it – we look to be loved by other people (first).
I saw so clearly that I had out-sourced loving me to my partner. I was not prepared to do it for myself and be the love that I was, so I ‘said’ to my partner – ‘you do it’. Now none of this was actually spoken about, nor as clear, but I know that deep down we both knew this was at play.
That was a game-changer for me, as I was like, OK check. How can I really expect someone to bring love to me if I am not prepared to bring the love to myself? That game is fraught right from the get-go. From there, I began my life-long love affair with me (and that story is for another blog!) that was supported by further presentations of Universal Medicine and Esoteric Women’s Health.
Second game changer for me was that we are actually ‘in a relationship’ 24/7.
We are in a relationship with ourselves, our friends, our family, our work colleagues, our neighbours, our mechanics, our petrol attendants, our shopkeepers, our partners, our…well you get the picture – our everyone. And that’s just the people. We are also in relationship with our interests, hobbies, work, home life, sports etc.….
I saw how clearly we have been so short-changed that unless you have a partner and are in a sexual relationship, you are not in a relationship, and that somehow that is the ultimate goal for many of us.
This took a while to fully sink in because it goes against the grain of what we have been sold. As I sat with it and explored this notion, I felt it took an incredible amount of pressure off me (and potential partners no doubt), as I no longer felt this need to be ‘in a relationship’. I started to open my eyes to the relationships all around me, and most importantly to the one with myself.
I worked with the knowing that we are already everything from the moment we are born. Who’s not looked at a newborn and seen them as everything?
I started to get to know me from this point and started to relate to people from this as well. I realised that I was in lots of relationships, even if they were only fleeting with a warm exchange in the local supermarket. It made the world feel more connected to me, as I was more open and connected to those around me.
Of course, there still remains being in a relationship with a partner and maybe that will be my future, I am not sure. But for now, I am enjoying travelling without the single baggage and enjoying being in lots of relationships and the learnings that come from this.