The Test of Independence

by Jane Moneypenny

90% of the time, I’m very okay with being alone and single and living by myself. The 10% is when I have to chase after jumping crickets at 2am in the summer or move large giant boxes or when I’m deathly sick. I woke up at 8:30am with that distinct feeling of sick – you know, the kind where you feel your stomach is cramping and your chest has the feeling of upchucking everything. I stumbled into the bathroom and spent the morning dealing with food poisoning from a bad creme brulee.

Being sick is bad enough, but having to clean up and take care of myself at the same time is a challenge. But I have to say, in the last years that I’ve lived alone and had no family or significant other to come to the rescue, I’ve learned a lot and feel good about standing on my own two feet, even when I’m bowled over throwing up.

Today was my last Cardinals game before I leave and I refused to miss it due to a bad egg, so I powered through. I was feeling much better by the time we left, but the shaking of the metro and going backwards led me to throwing up anyway (I was prepared with a plastic bag and it was a relatively empty car). Then I really did feel better and had a great perfect weather day at the ballpark: sunny, blue sky, a gentle breeze and the most exciting game I’ve ever watched in person. Most importantly, my first experience of seeing a walk-off home run in the 11th. Worth the getting sick on the train any day.

My point is, I guess, is will there ever be a time that I’ll release control and let someone into my life in that way? It isn’t really not being afraid to ask help or not wanting to, but not being able to imagine having someone in my life in such a big capacity. I have an incredibly group of supportive friends and a busy work life that I never really notice the missing hole in the romance department. Then l I get sick or watch my friends with their amazing boyfriends and I hope that I’ll find that one day. If anything, being single for this long has taught me what I want and don’t want a guy.

I’ve dated a lot of assholes in the past; guys like Smallbone’s man that can’t deal with being told no or don’t stay in contact because they’re not getting any. My retort is usually on the lines of: “You left your balls in your purse. Man up that you’re being told ‘no’.” I’ve never been the kind of girl to sleep around or bring home a stranger from a bar or date for the sole reason of not being lonely, but sometimes, it seems those girls or the ones that seem to be having more fun. And yeah, I know that in the long run, I may fare better, but I worry sometimes I’m missing out on some experience by not dating more.

I have 2 weeks left and my life is a mess. So much to do, so little time!