If you are relatively fresh off an ended relationship, the tendency is, a lot of the time, to take yourself out of the dating pool for some rest or contemplation time. And there’s nothing wrong with that. In fact, a dating break can be a good idea.
Two years before I actually married, I went on a self-prescribed dating break. I felt like I had been spending too much time fantasizing about finding the one, that there was a part of me that was holding myself back, holding my life back because subconsciously, I felt that my life would not truly begin until I had found my soul mate. I was putting too much mental energy into the whole search, wondering, “Will I meet him today?”, “Why haven’t I met him?” and “Will I ever meet him?”
Like in all matters where I have been without something I really wanted, I begin to feel as if God had forgotten about me. And I was angry. It took me some time to realize that there was a possibility that I would never marry and if I did, could I be happy, anyway?
I remember reading the book “Having Our Say: The Delany Sisters’ First 100 Years” written by the Delany Sisters with Amy Hill Hearth about this time. Sarah “Sadie” Delany and Elizabeth “Bessie” Delany were sisters, each aged over a hundred at the time of the writing. In the narrative, they chronicled their upbringing in the deep south as the children of educated, well-to-do mixed Blacks, how they went on to the north and broke barriers.
Both women, the products of a slave father who eventually became the first African-American Episcopal Bishop elected in the United States and a teacher/administrator mother (who was the daughter of a free Black woman and a white Virginia farmer), would go on to attend Columbia University in New York. Sadie would eventually obtain a Master’s Degree and become the first Black woman licensed to teach High School level Domestic Science in the New York City public schools system. Bessie would become the second woman licensed to practice dentistry in the state of New York. In the book, they talked about their adventures and their philosophy. Neither ever married and when asked the secret to their long, energetic, accomplished lives, responded that it was because they’d never had husbands to worry them to death!
Around this same time, I remembered reading of a study that said women who never marry and never have children live longer than women who do marry and have children. This same study also said that, strangely, for men, the opposite is true. Now, I’ve read of studies, since, that refute this, but at that time, my mind was pretty blown. I was shocked, but, as I thought about it, it started to make total sense to me.