Wow! I will be 28 in August and it seems like yesterday I was anxiously preparing for my 18th birthday. I couldn’t wait to be “grown,” and now I wish I was young again. I’m actually teasing a little. I’m not too worried about getting older, even under the circumstances. I’m not married, nor am I in a serious relationship with the potential marry soon. I don’t have children, and according to most doctors, realistically I have about 12 years before birth becomes a risk. 12 years may seem like a long time, but it’ll be here before I know it. So you’d probably think someone like me might feel depressed or pressured because at 27 I’m not where I’m “supposed” to be. It’s quite the contrary though. I’m happy and comfortable with where I am in my life – single and fancy free!
Some men and women, especially women, with my lifestyle feel the urge to play catch up. I see women who play catch up all the time, and in my opinion it gets them no where except alone, unhappy, or divorced. One of my most prized guidelines in dating is “Don’t settle.” Settling is the worst thing a woman or man can do, but women particularly get more pressure to marry and have children. Unfortunately the more pressure toward women, the more they settle. Women who settle into a relationships or marriage to ‘catch up’ to societies idealisms, only hurt themselves. Are you one of these women? If you are, then take the pressure off of you. Value your life, your goals, and your purpose! You might think it’s easier said than done, but honestly it’s simple. The day you truly and undoubtedly love yourself, is the day you will never look at dating the same. You will forever be changed because you will know exactly what you do and don’t want in a mate. Aside from dating, you’ll have a better sense of life, and what you do and don’t need to fulfill it. So here’s another dating guideline to live by, “Do love yourself before you attempt to love someone else.”
How many times have you heard that before? I too was a skeptic in the beginning, then I started practicing. It’s sad, but true that you may have to practice loving yourself. The media exposes unrealistic images of what is ideal, so sometimes we have to drill positive mantras in our head to erase those images. You’re probably thinking all this love BS is nonsense, and you probably want to ask me, “Are you really okay with the possibility of not marrying and having children?” I can honestly say yes! I’m okay! Marriage and kids are a priority of mine, however it’s not my # 1 priority. My #1 priority is to be stable and successful in my career first, so I can later support my family. That doesn’t mean I’m going to ignore opportunities for love, it just means I won’t rush love when I find it. I want to marry for so many reasons other than age and circumstances. My parents have been married for 35 years, and I aspire to have that kind of marriage. I understand I have to take my time in order to get it. I also understand that life happens according to God’s plan, so I’ve let Him have full control in the love department. I just try to make wise decisions to aid His plan. Let’s be real, I can marry the next man who will have me and pop out some kids, but that won’t make happy. Playing catch up is a lose lose situation if you’re gambling happiness for the sake of time.
Zakiya Mellanin, CEO of True Hues, LLC, talks about reprogramming your mind for the single life in her blog post “So what do you do if you’ve missed all the deadlines for when you’re supposed to be engaged, married w/children or at least have a prospect ?”