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A Woman Alive

October 9th, 2013

A Woman Alone in Two Pieces

By Diane

TwoPiecesThe most vulnerable place inside of me over the last several years has been my status as a women alone.  I never anticipated finding myself here, in this place at 53 years old.  And yet here I am.  I have been alone (i.e. without a committed partner) for the last 5 ½ years. This was unexpected. There was no plan, no preparedness, and I was, quite frankly, caught off guard.  The overriding and predominant feeling is fear: Will I be alone forever?  Will I be able to take care of myself alone as I age?

Fears I hide in a thick veil of shame as the world around me chimes, “find fulfillment for yourself, create a great life for yourself alone!”

Yes I hear you and I am working on that – but damn-it!  I do not want to be here!

I am committed to helping and guiding women to discover their authentic selves – to create their work and their lives immersed in their passion and purpose.  And I have worked hard to bring this authenticity in to my own life.  So I was thinking – where does this all fit – this pain at being single, the deep feeling of missing the other half of myself.  And yet I have a full, vibrant and active life? How do these two pieces of myself fit together?

I have been trying to reconcile all of the language, books and conversations about who we are “supposed” to be as women.  This swirl creates the crazy voice in my head that says “you should be happy by yourself,” “you should not need a partner” and the ever growing frustration that I just plain miss having a man in my life.

I remember as a teenager when the women’s movement was in high gear I had asked at assembly with Gloria Steinem, “What if a women wants to stay home?”  As you can imagine the silence in the auditorium was palpable!

And I have to say this haunts me today.  How do I reconcile this angst of being “alone” with my desire to create and build a successful career, to be financially independent and to be a role model to my daughter who is now a young women asking herself who and what she desires to create for herself.  This internal (and external) dialogue has seemed at odds and it is this struggle that causes much of the pain – that haunting question – “why can’t I just be okay alone?”

And then it hit me.

  • I do not have to reconcile these two people – I get to be both.  I can co-exist with all the pieces of myself – it is a language outside of myself that claims there is only one way or another.
  • I am allowed to feel alone and sad and crying.
  • I am allowed to be hurt and feel vulnerable and exposed.
  • I can express openly my desire to be in a relationship.
  • And I can be independent, successful and out in the world empowering women to create their dreams.

I get to be and feel my emotions to the core.  I can tell you to please shut up about finding fulfillment alone.  And I get to be the other me too – a woman alive, vibrant, grateful, active, learning and growing.

That is my authentic journey.


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