There are quite a few ways to kick off a new year, especially one that is following probably the worst year (or one of the worst years) most of us have ever had. And as I bubbled in my bullet journal mood tracker for day one of this January, I filled in the little square blue, for sad, and sat on my bed with my splotchy, tear-stained faced, and let out a long sigh.
And I cried because I felt lonely. I felt afraid–I started thinking about all the decisions this year would bring, all the change, and all the times I’ve struggled with change. And then I thought about how I will be moving and making all these changes by myself–well, not entirely by myself, but I mean, as a single person.
And I realized, in those moments, all of three days ago, when I was feeling very much by myself, I need to allow myself to live in the space of tension that comes with being on your own. The tension of loving getting to make your own life while also recognizing the difficulty and pain that comes while living with the desire to move in to a space of partnership. It’s okay to acknowledge that singleness is difficult–it’s okay to acknowledge that it is sometimes painful and that you can love it and hate it all at the same time.
We need to be able to approach our somewhat lonely relational experiences in life with honesty, whether in a relationship or not (although I am more specifically talking about being single), because to deny how we are feeling in our current relational space will carry itself, eventually, throughout all of our relational spaces, romantic or otherwise.
You are allowed to feel lonely. You are allowed to feel sad. You are allowed to love where you are and hate where you are all at once, and no one needs to tell you how to feel about your singleness. It’s weird, and it’s uncomfortable, but it’s also great, and that’s okay.
We’ve demonized loneliness instead of pressing into it–asking what it means and why–and bringing it to the Throne of the Father. Because loneliness won’t magically disappear whether you have a ring on your finger or not, and joy won’t perfectly take over with relational independence or partnership. And we need space to acknowledge where we are and why we are where we are–and we need to take a breath and be okay with the tension.
The world is screaming: COMFORT! WHATEVER MAKES YOU COMFORTABLE! But life isn’t comfortable, and it would be super boring and absolutely worthless if it was. Press into the tension, and live boldly in the discomfort that comes along with living between contentment and desire–because they can, in fact, exist together.
At the end of the day, we are just blobs of change, feelings, and emotion that need Jesus an unbelievable amount and are loved by Him unconditionally. So, if nothing else, rest in that, and remember you are loved–whether you believe it or not.