The pic above is from the living room of the sketchouse. With it’s coverless light switches, mismatched furniture, lack of warm colors and fridge full of pepsi and condiments, the sketchouse is not just where I live, but it’s a symbol of something much more significant. I am single.
Every once in a while the ‘issue’ of my lack of marital status becomes the hot topic of discussion among my friends and family. This typically accompanies holiday gatherings, after-church lunches, and encounters with newlyweds. While these discussions are a blast, I find myself answering a lot of the same questions repeatedly. So I’d like to take this space to answer some FAQ about the ‘issue’ of singleness. Joining me in this discussion are a panel of experts, also known as the sketchouse roommates.
Ed. note: I’m doing some massive paraphrasing here
me – One of the most common questions we get to answer is the age-old, we-mean-well, ‘when are you getting married?’ Your thoughts?
Tebow -As soon as I meet a hot Christian girl.
me- That likes you.
Tebow – Exactly.
Big Perm – People treat being single like it’s some kind of disease. It is. I’m trying to find the cure. We should make ribbons.
me – When I find the person who I can laugh with, encourages me to be closer to God, and has the other half of this magical amulet.
me – What about the, ‘I want grandkids” response?
Tebow – I can move back in if you want.
Big Perm – Let me remind you, there are certain steps that have happen in sequence for that to happen. Hence the discussion we are now involved in.
me – (blank stare)
me- Another classic is the, “I have someone you should meet’ conundrum.
Big Perm – I always ask if she has a great personality. This one is tough because it’s alway comes from someone who means well, but typically has no clue about who you are attracted to.
Tebow – Yeah, I think that line is less about the two people having a connection, and more about someone trying to be a matchmaker.
me – Agreed. Most of the time I get the sense that whoever is trying to set me up has this rationale that just because we are both single we have something in common. I’ve been set up before where we had nothing in common but being single. If we had started a relationship then we would have lost that. So tricky.
Tebow – Don’t forget the out of staters.
me – Oh yeah. I have someone you should meet. She lives in Wisconsin. You should drop everything and go there on the hope that a blind date will pan out.
Big Perm – If you really want me to meet your friend/ neice/granddaughter then invite us both to something where we can decide if we want to pursue.
me – any other thoughts?
Tebow – If I wanted to get hitched just to get hitched, there are plenty of people willing to do that. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with holding out for something more meaningful. I’m not waiting for the perfect girl, but I’m not going to settle for club trash either.
Big Perm – Enough of my life is unsettled right now, it’s actually a really really good thing I’m single right now.
me – I don’t really need reminders about the fact that I’m single. People assume I’m not trying because I’m not with someone. I very rarely let an opportunity pass to meet someone, or try and develop a relationship into something more significant.
Needless to say we had a pretty fun discussion when everyone got back to the sketchouse tonight. I am very blessed to be living with a couple of guys that are going through a lot of the same life experiences as I am. None of us are looking to live together forever, but for right now we are definitely enjoying our time in the sketchouse.
Which leads me to my main thought. Yesterday I was talking with dantheman about single life. He may have become my best friend twenty seven years ago, but he has remained my best friend because he is so level headed and encouraging to talk to about being single. That, and he laughs at all of my misadventures with women. We talked for a while about me being single, and how my life is unique because of that. He asked if I enjoyed being single, and I did not hesitate to respond with a solid yes.
I believe that we should all be looking toward the future with hopes, dreams, and plans. But, we should not miss out on the joy in being where we are at that moment, no matter where we are in life.
And so I enjoy being single. Am I planning on staying single? No. But for right now it’s where I’m at and I will squeeze every ounce of joy that I possibly can out of nights like tonight that end with three guys sitting in a living room of a sketchy house talking about awkward moments in dating.
And when I am in a relationship, I’ll enjoy that too.
This past summer I was in a great relationship that brought me tremendous amounts of joy. It was the first time I was with someone and thought there was potential of this being my last relationship. It was the first time I was in a place where I should have been thinking that way. Unfortunately, it didn’t work out. We were in different places, wanting to go different directions at different speeds. But, we both enjoyed where we were at while we were together.
I think that’s a big key to faith. Being able to look around and see how God is working in every situation. You see, matchmakers might look at me and say I should be with someone, anyone. But God often times is saying, ‘No’. For whatever reason He has, I trust His timing and providence mush more than I trust my plans, and those of my ‘lookouts’.
So just a few more things to clear up:
I am not going to get married just to get married.
I am not planning on staying single forever.
I am doing something about finding the right woman.
I am enjoying my time as a bachelor.
And the reason the sketchouse looks like three bachelors live here, is because three bachelors live here.
Someday, I’m sure I’ll live in a place with a full pantry, candles everywhere, matching furniture not from Ikea, and plenty of knick-knacks from Michaels tucked away in the corner of every room. But until that time comes, I’m living in places like the sketchouse, where we don’t keep any food in the fridge because we’re never home. Where we don’t have a dining room table because on the rare occasion we are eating at home, it’s to watch a football game. One day, I’ll live in a place where decor outranks utilitarianism, and we can’t put our feet on the coffee table, and we’ll have to use coasters for drinks.
And I’m perfectly fine with that.
One love, One heart.
Ed. note: For any single ladies out there, I know some guys you just have to meet.
Stranger Than Fiction / Bad Religion
Greatest Hits / DAS EFX
Live at the House of Blues / Thrice
What the Dog Saw / Malcolm Gladwell