I came on here to vent and rant and rave because — let’s face it — I like to do that.

But after reading both my brother’s post and my sister’s post today, my frame of mind changed.  Both posts were so moving and thought-provoking, it was hard to come here and rant.

I’d highly recommend both posts, so feel free to head over and read them before finishing reading this.  You may never come back.  But if you do, I’d like to share some thoughts.

Being single has unique challenges.  Now, my family does have a reputation for non sequitur conversations, but this really does follow- I promise.

When I was reading my sister’s post about the daily trials of motherhood, I realized that part of the challenge of single life is the lack of trials.  While she is being stretched and strengthened, she is learning about God’s life-giving love in the school of dirty diapers and spilled juice.

There are no dirty diapers here.  There is no one demanding my attention.   There is no one to take me away from my computer, my television, my telephone, my book, my crochet, my sleep.

My brother’s post revealed the thoughts of the first day of felt-fatherhood.  While a mother bonds with her child in utero, the father’s first bonding moment is when he holds his child in his arms.  Until then, he may love the child and care about the child and worry about the child — but he can only do so through his wife.  After birth, there’s new felt responsibility, there’s a new bonding, a new connection.

I have no lives dependent upon me.   While I have godchildren to pray for, students to teach, and friends and family to love and worry about, the single life I’m currently living bears no responsibility like the responsibility of souls.

We are all called to lay down our lives.  For my brother and sister, they do it daily for their children and their spouses.

The trial of single life is the lack of trial.  Sure, every life has its cross.  I’m not going to pretend I have a perfectly carefree life with no suffering.  But the danger of the single life — which is why I have come to believe it is not, in itself, a vocation — is that it quite easily spirals into a selfish life.

Look into my closet and see my shoes.  To me, those shoes encapsulate my current state in life.  There are a lot of them.  And if I wanted another pair… I might not hesitate before buying them.

Some women in the world may see that as the epitome of happiness.  Me?  Reread my those two blog posts by my brother and sister.    That’s happiness, folks.

… And so I must also remember… the cross of single life is being satisfied where you are at this moment, while striving to be better.

And, not that my other sister can read this blog, but if she could, I’ll put a plug in for her vocation as well.
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