Mourning Your Single Self

Congratulations! You are in the relationship that you always imagined,

whether you are married or just committed to the person of your dreams. You may have just found out you were pregnant or just had a baby and are on cloud 9 looking at this new little blessing God has given to you. Whichever it is, your life is changing and its exciting right? Or is it?


I’ve dreamed of this…

I know you once dreamed of all of this. The marriage/relationship, the children, the home, the job; it’s everything you prayed for. So why do you feel like something is missing? There is a part of you that is still dissatisfied. Church folk will tell you it’s a lack of contentment; that you are not grateful for the place that you are in, or what God has blessed you with. Your friends will say it’s just you needing to adjust to your new life, that you are just overwhelmed. Trese says, you are mourning and its ok!


Mourning?

Yes, sis, you are mourning! Having to care for someone or constantly consider someone else’s feelings other than your own is a sort of death, a death to self. As you do when you mourn the loss of a loved one, you also go through those same stages when you feel like you are losing the most important person to you, yourself. The 5 stages of grief are Denial & Isolation, Anger, Bargaining, Depression, Acceptance. Let’s discuss each


Denial & Isolation…

You refuse to believe that your life has changed in such a way that you can no longer come and go as you please without checking in or considering someone else’s schedule. If you are newly married, you still want to hang out with the girls until 2 to 3 am in the morning, and you can… a partner doesn’t change that. However, out of respect you do need to mention it and let your partner know. I know I know, that sounds like submission huh? Something you WOULD NEVER do. It’s not submitting it’s being considerate. When you once never had to consult with anyone about your comings and goings, it’s respectful to let your partner know if you are going out of town with the girls or won’t be coming home until 2 am.

Instead of capitulating to that, to almost “asking permission” (even though that’s not what I’M saying AT ALL) you’d rather just pass on that invite out and act like you are so in love and you want to spend every waking moment with your partner. Denial sis. You want to go out but you don’t want to accept that “going out” looks different now. Planning has to take place, checking in is a respectful thing to do. Nope, you won’t do it. Isolation is better. You’ll just smother your partner to death instead of “checking in”. Instead of being forced to consider someone else’s opinion or feelings.

If you’re a new mom I think this phase is even WORSE for you. You want to believe that you can still be the same cool, on the go woman you always were. That you can stay out all night and get up with the baby in 2 hrs. to feed/nurse. Shopping or get your nails done with the baby in tow because that’s what you’ve always done and the baby is not going to slow you down. You. Can. Do. It. All.

Girl… stop. DENIAL. You need help, and that’s OK. Again, planning has to take place for certain things or an insane amount of preparation. The throw-on-something-and-head-out-the-door days are over, at least for now. It’s OK, I promise you.


Anger…

…a strong feeling of annoyance, displeasure, or hostility.

You find yourself angry at the rain, the air conditioning, and the clothes that used to fit that no longer fit. You’re angry at your spouse for seemingly being able to come and go as they please with little regard to what you have going on or how you are feeling. That’s all completely rational and realistic right?!

Partly. Yes, because you are just on the other side of denial you realize that YOUR life has changed. But we sometimes mistake how our life has changed as a direct correlation to the reason our life has changed. Let me break it down further. I now have to plan to leave the house because I have to ensure my child has someone to look after her, I am now angry at the situation. Angry at my partner, angry at the fact that I have to plan, angry that I am tired. Just angry. This phase is tricky and if you don’t manage it carefully can turn into resentment which can have catastrophic consequences to your relationship and/or your ability to bond with your child/children. Proceed with caution in this phase, recognize the misdirected path of your anger and correct, quickly.


Bargaining…

This one is sometimes hard to recognize. Unlike with mourning the loss of someone and you are asking God to take you instead of them, or if they are dying… negotiating with God by agreeing to sacrifice something you have or want in order to save your loved one; bargaining when mourning your single self is a bit different.

Sometimes you ARE bargaining with God, especially if you are a mother. “God, if you just let this child sleep through the night tonight, I promise to lead Bible study in church on Tuesday” or “God, if my husband can just KNOW that I need time away and book me a trip with my girlfriends I’ll never fake a headache again” Most times, though, you find yourself bargaining with yourself; attempting to give yourself the grace you don’t believe wholeheartedly you deserve.

Wives & Moms just having fun… unapologetically.


You will tell yourself that if you go hard as a spouse or mom for 7 days that the next week you will be able to have 2 days of “me time”. You tell yourself that if you can just make a schedule and stick to it, that you will be able to handle each new day with more patience and acceptance. That you will be able to carve out some time for just you if you can devise a plan and stick to it for the week, meal prep, child care, tutoring… whatever.

Bargaining is our way of negotiating a way to keep our single self, with a twist if you will. Good luck!