Somebody's getting married...
And no, it's not me.
For the last week, my office has been abuzz at a coworker's upcoming wedding. The wedding itself was yesterday, and barring any unforeseen complications they should be on their way to their honeymoon. All in all, it brightened the mood at work, which was nice, since working in a bank the mood could use as much brightening as possible.
However, I found myself in a strange position, as I'm the only permanent employee in my office who has never been married. There are a few who aren't married anymore, but they're in a different boat altogether. So whenever somebody would congratulate my coworker on her upcoming nuptials and I was somewhere nearby, the congratulator would inevitably turn to me and ask, "so, when are you getting married?"
Eventually, I learned to tailor my responses depending on who was asking. My generic answer tended to be "not anytime soon." If it was a guy- especially an older guy- I'd heap on the alpha-male swagger with "you know me, I like my bachelor lifestyle too much for that." And if it was a woman with whom I had a comfortable working relationship, I'd turn it into a self-deprecating joke, something along the lines of "I like women too much to inflict myself upon them."
All the wedding talk got me thinking- many of the people in my life are married. Not just those at work, but family members too, even some younger than I am. To say nothing of my friends, both in my everyday interactions and those I correspond with online. Looking down my blogroll, the majority of the people whose sites and blogs I frequent are married/engaged/in long-term relationships, and a good number of them have kids.
So being single and not in a relationship, I do feel a little out of the loop sometimes. By and large, married people gravitate toward other married people. This makes sense, since they tend to have a good deal in common with each other. But at the same time, having lots of married friends hasn't exactly done wonders for my own social life either. Heaven forbid anyone try to fix me up with their single friends or anything, but more and more I notice a tendency among married people to freeze us unmarried types out of their social circles. Not that I'm asking for them to hook me up with their single friends or anything- I'd just like to be included in the grown-up games now and again, instead of being relegated to the kids' table, figuratively speaking.
And yet, I'm not all that impatient to be married. I'm genuinely happy for my married friends, and I'd be a shitty friend if I begrudged them that happiness. Likewise, I don't dismiss the idea of marriage as a serious possibility for myself in the future. All I'm saying is that I'm not sweating it. This hasn't always been the case. As many of you may recall, I used to despair that I'd end up alone and unloved, like the overweight best friend in a bad chick flick. But the more I see of myself, the more I think that I simply may not be ready for marriage quite yet. And you know what? I'm cool with that. I can wait to get married, if waiting means I find someone cool instead of someone whose standards are relaxed enough to marry me. Sure, if I wait I might never end up being in a 66-year marriage like my paternal grandparents, but oh well. I've got a lot of living, and I dare say no small amount of growing up, to do before I commit to marriage. I can't be sure, but I believe it'll happen someday, and for now that's good enough for me.