I am a goal setting girl. I make a to do list every day (mostly because I am incredibly forgetful). I set weekly intentions. I set one year, five year and ten-year goals.
I pick a word of the year every year and encourage my family to do the same. Giving up men for a year wasn’t exactly a goal I set out to accomplish, but around the six-month mark in 2019, I realized that it was something that I was well on my way to achieving and I wanted to challenge myself to keep my single without a desire to mingle status.
About six or seven years ago, I decided to give up meat for a year and I’ve been happily carnivore free ever since. I am really hoping that this isn’t the same case here. Though not that I’m comparing men to say, roasted turkey, but I can see how you can lose the craving for something that you once loved when you learn to live without it.
I’ve never really been a relationship girl, aside from that time that I was married and with the same man for seventeen years. I’ve always been more of a dater, less attracted to a commitment and more attracted to a fleeting carefree romance. You know how some people always seem to be in a relationship? How they go from break-up or divorce to a new profile pic and updated relationship status or new marriage all in what seems to be in the span of time that I had romaine go bad in my fridge? I don’t think I have that gene.
I do adore men and dating though. And I loved all of the good, beautiful parts of being married. I loved the feeling of having someone in the room. The shared look of, it’s time to go home. I loved the feeling of someone reaching for my hand and not wanting to let it go. I loved being kissed. I loved having a dance partner. I loved the feeling of the companionship of a best friend with all of the glorious benefits. I miss the passion and falling asleep before talking about your day on someone’s chest. I miss that feeling of protection, to have a partner, to have someone on my same team, rooting for me, rooting for us, rooting for our kids. I miss the team.
Of course, there were challenging and deeply painful parts too. And in the last three years I have worked tremendously hard to heal from what was said, cracked, felt and what was lost.
And since then I have sporadically dated and had a little fun. Nothing really scandalous or wild but overall, light, happy and sometimes hilarious. I actually started writing a book about it because so much had changed in the seventeen years that I had last been single. Cell phones for starters. But then my mother-in-law passed away and the road of divorce became more like a roller coaster and I was (and still am) raising four kids while working full time and suddenly I didn’t feel so funny and life all felt a bit heavy. So that book is in a drawer. And I decided to date myself instead.
What I have learned is that single is not a dirty word. Settling should be. Single is a status that should be owned and celebrated. It is a space in time where you learn to take care of one of the most meaningful and should be the healthiest relationship in your life: the one you have with yourself. You learn you. In all of your flaws, grit and glory you find yourself and what you love in this world and you find your own happiness which is something that we all should learn to do, regardless of relationship status. I have learned that I can stand on my own two feet. I can travel and dance and laugh and experience it all, all on my own. It is an empowering, beautiful life though, admittedly, I wanted to take a break on men so I could focus on me and really get it together. Well, my life still isn’t really together. But I have realized that no one’s is. But that focusing on me actually turned out to be priceless and something I will carry into this next decade, whether there is someone reaching for my hand or not.
Though that is a feeling I do hope to maybe one day have again. Not just a fleeting for fun feeling, but the real deal, falling asleep having a partner type of love. Certain feelings are more than worthy goals to go after. But inner peace remains at the top of my list.
Katie has a book out that is a collection of quotes and mic drops to embrace your inner warrior. “Girl Power” is available on Amazon and is the perfect gift for all the warriors in your world. You can find out more details and book signing info on her instagram @katieyackleymoore. Endless thanks for reading. Xo
Katie Yackley Moore is a freelance writer, real estate agent, yoga instructor and a momma of four navigating life and a separation and finding herself in the process. She adores coffee shops, laughing until it hurts and impromptu dance parties. Her work has appeared on Scary Mommy, Mamalode and HuffPost Parents. She has published a journal entitled “Dream a Bigger Dream” and the children’s books “You Are a Warrior” and “We are Family” and just finished her first novel. Catch up with her between tea breaks at The Naked Momma and on Facebook.