Rhapsodies of the Barefooted Gypsy

In a relationship with… myself

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To my closest friends who have become so worried about me being the only single girl in the group:

You guys are the best and you definitely know this. (I can’t remember how many times I have stressed this before!) I love you guys for always having my back and making sure that I am enjoying my time, and you know that I do! Which makes me wonder why, lately, it has been quite obvious that you’ve all started asking ‘what happened to me.’ As if I got an immune disease from a different universe.

Come on, it’s not like all of you guys are getting engaged or married, or was I sleeping when you announced the news? I’m pretty sure there were no wedding invitations in my mailbox the last time I checked. So, it’s not like I’m missing the boat or anything.

I know very well that you care for me just the way I care about you. You want me to be happy the way I always want you guys to be happy with your relationships. That’s what friendship is about, making sure that all of us are getting our ups when everything else is pulling us down. Believe me when I say that I get my daily dose of happy when I see your holiday pictures by the beach with your boyfriend/girlfriend. Even those cheesy banters you and your significant other exchanges on your Facebook walls seem cute to me when usually it would have made me irk.

I appreciate that you are observing and commenting about my love life (or the lack there of) as if I am a specimen under a microscope, but make no mistake–I am happy. Genuinely. And I mean every word.

On those Thursday nights that you are all bundled up in bed, cuddling with your babe/cupcake/honey/sweetheart/whatever-crazy-name-you-call-them while waiting for your pizza delivery, I’m not watching the worst ‘Lifetime’ movie, crying my eyeballs out, while I go hugging my cats. (You all know I’m not a cat person!)

On those nights, I’m out, smoking shisha, having a good amount of conversation with whoever you guys happen to be free, and if that’s no one, then I’m out, dancing the night away with my friends from salsa.


I know why I’m single. I know that there’s nothing “wrong” with me. (I’m perfect, the way you guys always remind me so.)

It’s just that the guys I happen to like are emotionally unavailable. And I wouldn’t just be with any guy who I am not attracted to and whose character does not appeal to me just because he is emotionally available (the bars are raised much higher now.) I am turning 26 this year, and here in Cairo, 88 percent of guys my age are already in relationships, getting engaged or are already engaged, getting married or are already married. The remaining 12 percent are guys who are most probably assholes, and if they are genuinely nice guys, I’m pretty sure we have different mindset and takes on life. Please don’t let me start talking about cultural differences, religious beliefs, political views and opposite mentalities. I have yet to meet a single guy my age living in Cairo whose definition of dating and/or relationship is equivalent to mine.

Being single at 26 isn’t something I should be worried about and neither should you. It doesn’t make me a lesser person. In fact, singledom is the major reason why my life feels so full at the moment. You guys of all people in the world would know how much of a workaholic and social butterfly I am. If I am in a relationship, do you think I’ll be able to travel when I want to? Go to the gym because I’m motivated to? Attend salsa parties because I love to? Write for three different magazines because I have the luxury of time to do so?

You can start worrying about me being single when I hit 35, (but you’ll probably be too busy worrying about your own family and kids then.) Until then, just chill and relax.



The bottom line is that I’m not actively looking for someone to share my Facebook relationship status with other than myself. (See how I have so much free time that I was actually able to create another Facebook profile because Facebook is too selfish to allow anyone to be in a relationship with themselves.) I am really enjoying my mid-20’s. I go to salsa parties every other night, I take myself out to expensive dinners because I deserve it. I have the time to read books and be inspired by the writers, to watch movies in an actual cinema, to spoil myself with presents and not feel guilty about it. I am taking this relationship hiatus as a beginning to a deeper relationship with myself. Everyday I am learning and discovering something new about myself. I challenge myself and feel proud when I live up to it.

Rest assured, when I meet someone who lives up to all my ideals and expectations, you’ll be the first to know. ‘Til then just be comfortable in the idea that I decided to give all the love I have to give to myself, and I don’t see any reason why not.

So, stop feeling sorry for me. There is no need to make it your personal goal to hook me up. No need to feel bad when you and your babe/cupcake/honey/sweetheart/whatever-crazy-name-you-call-them are out with me and I am not holding anyone’s hand, because I don’t need to be with someone just so I can hang out with you guys. No more double dates and enough of those blind dates. Instead, let’s plan our next group date, shall we?

Xoxo,
Jen.

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