A Moment in My Life – Thursday, June 3, 2021
Jeannie Yee Davis
If you had a choice, what would you do? Would you choose to be alone or be with someone for the sole purpose of being with someone? We don’t always have a say, and especially not everybody does, but if you did, how would you choose?
When I was in high school, my future seemed pretty set with me marrying a guy that my mother selected for me. It was done to her and done to my older sister, and it was my turn to follow suit. The thing that never made sense to me was that mother hated it being done to her, yet as soon as her daughters were of age, she willingly continued with the old-fashioned matchmaking tradition between some guy’s family with ours.
Long story short, my older sister had no voice and married the chosen man for her. It wasn’t going to work for me. I’m too romantic to spend a moment of my life with someone I do not genuinely love. I didn’t have a voice either, but I was witty and managed to convince my mother that each guy she presented to me did not fit her expectations quite how they sold it to her. I wore my mother down, and she relented with “Fine. You find your own husband.”
I married the love of my life—the best person I’ve ever known. We had an incredible 37 years together. Our story wasn’t peachy every day, but nothing seemed that bad as long as we were together. We were rarely separated until death separated us for good.
Now, I’m in my later years and single. My unattached girlfriends and I have been exploring this subject lately, and since it’s fresh on my mind, I am sharing my thoughts with you. Some dislike the aloneness to the point where they would rather be with a guy who may not be ideal, but he would replace the loneliness. I know that unless we’ve walked a mile in someone else’s shoes, we honestly can’t judge their decision. Although, I’m curious how I would handle it? How would you take it? The only thing I could do is play scenarios in my head to get an idea of what life would look like with different people.
The people we have around us do impact us more than you know. If you spend a lot of time with someone, it’s easy to lose yourself in that person. It could be for the better or the worst, but change is inevitable. The people we hang out with make us who we are. I’ve met a variety of people within the last six months, and some of them have impacted my life tremendously without my realizing it until I noticed the effects that took a toll on me. We weren’t in a relationship. We were just friends. Yet, this person had a significant impact on me, and eventually, I realized I was smothered and drained and no longer was living my life my way. How did that happen? It was little subtleties each day until it became all day, and I realized I was no longer alone. I fell into a relationship without knowing it. That’s scary if you ask me. Other people came into my life and added smiles and positivity to my day. Those scenarios helped me see what works and what doesn’t work for me.
People used to ask me how my late husband and I managed to spend 24/7 together and didn’t kill each other. The simple truth was that we could live in a studio apartment 24/7 and be out of each other’s hair. How does that work? We spent time together but also apart. We shared the same room doing our own things. For example, we used to sit next to each other to be near one another, but we did our own things. That was the beauty of our relationship. We got to be together all the time, but we did our own thing. We gave each other space and the freedom to be ourselves.
I mentally combined the different scenarios and concluded that I like being with someone, and I value my freedom. I never cared for micromanagers and definitely didn’t like to be smothered. Considering these few preferences, I would rather be alone than to have someone in my life who doesn’t allow me the freedom to become all that I could be. Life is too short to spend any of it with someone who breaks you down or drains you.
Our goal in life should be to inspire people every day and help each other be the best versions of ourselves. Above all, to spread kindness and positivity every chance we get. That’s the kind of person I’d like to spend my every day with, too. For that reason, I wouldn’t want to be with someone contrary to this plan, but it is subjective to be or not to be.