Being Single Ain’t Cheap

I was waiting in line after the candlelight Christmas service, wearing an adorable dress suit, when my former Sunday School teacher said to me, “You remind me so much of your Aunt Janet.”

“What – an old maid?!” I responded.

Aunt Janet is my great-grandfather’s sister and I can’t even hazard a guess of her age. My great-grandmother is 86-ish, but I think Aunt Janet is a little younger than that. She looks darn good for her age, at any rate. She’s had quite the life. She was a nurse in the Navy and has all kinds of degrees adorning her walls. She’s traveled all over the world and I’m sure she could tell stories that would make your hair curl. But she’s never been married, and the only guy that anyone talks about with a romantic connotation lived with his mother.

That exchange rolled over me as I folded clothes and reflected on a coworker’s announcement earlier today.

The years after college are marked with waves. First was the wedding wave, seven weddings one summer, six the next and others littered between. Three cousins get married in four months two summers ago. Two of my younger sisters have walked down the aisle. I’m riding in the baby waves right now. My nephew just turned one. The other weekend I went to a pregnancy party and this weekend is my college best friend’s baby shower in Pittsburgh. These three cousins have all become fathers in the past few months. A message was delivered to my inbox on Friday listing at least six sorority sisters who are pregnant and a coworker just today announced she’s due in November. This doesn’t even include the bloggers I stalk read.

Like all little girls I played bride and dreamed of my wedding day. Remember those dolls with the diapers that disintegrated to reveal the baby’s gender? The doll Santa brought me turned out to have a twin! But these days I don’t see myself getting married or having children. I would love to, but I just don’t see it in my future. I have a pretty big hang up that keeps me from getting too close to men. I don’t know if I tell myself I won’t get married so I won’t be dissappointed if it never happens or whether it’s related to how I deal with what I really want but over which I don’t have ultimate control. Like when I ran for milk queen. I kept telling myself that I wasn’t going to win so when my name was called it was a huge surprise (only not really because I totally knew I was going to win).

Being single is expensive and Carrie had the right idea on Sex and the City when she threw herself a party and registered for Manolos.

I know a marriage or children do not a complete life make. My question is this: how did Aunt Janet get so rich after buying gifts for all of the engagement parties, bridal showers, bachelorette parties, weddings, pregnancy parties, baby showers and birthday parties and never receiving gifts for the same milestones in her own life? And do they make Manolos to fit size 10 feet?



  1. Kelly Said:

    You know what? I don’t think we can ever really know what life has in store for us. I never quite imagined being where I am right now, and fate can take you down some interesting paths.

    I think it’s cool that you are so introspective and evaluate what your future might be… helps you be prepared for whatever comes along! 🙂

  2. I can totally relate! All of the parties and showers get very expensive. I’m looking at friends who are on their second baby and thinking “when did we become grown-ups?”

  3. Pocklock Said:

    Everyone goes through this. I started convincing myself that I’d be single forever and just as I started to become okay with it, into my life waltzed my husband. It still took me a few months to realize that perhaps I really could make it work with someone.

    Every pot has a lid. You’ll find yours. Sometimes it just takes longer than expected. Most importantly, never settle.

    And dude. Being married and having a kid is damn expensive! That’s why Aunt Janet has cash. I lived MUCH cheaper when I was single. Food wasn’t as important when I didn’t have a husband – especially one that REQUIRES a starch at every meal. Single and apple with peanut butter was dinner. What’s that cost? $1.50? And I couldn’t even begin to tell you how much this kid is costing me and she hasn’t even been born yet? It’s scary. SCARY!

    The showers and weddings and parties and showers (again) will soon pass as you move on with your life and one day, I swear, it’ll be your turn. 🙂

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