Spinster Life, what??

The holiday season in the US is rapidly approaching. It’s always a mixed time for me. I didn’t grow up in a large family with much tradition about anything. My dream was always to have a loving spouse with 10 children AND be the first female president of the United States.

None of that happened. I remember hearing as a little girl (can’t tell you the source) about how odd and weird spinsters were and you definitely do NOT want to become one. In case you aren’t sure what a spinster is, it’s an older lady who has never been legally married.

So I didn’t get the large family or the presidency, but I guess I got spinster status. I kind of like it. It’s unique and spinsters were always a bit odd. I don’t find myself odd in any strange ways. I don’t have a tv that’s even plugged in or functioning, but I do have a queue of too many books to read. I’m probably overly attached to my dogs and entirely too independent, but I love those things.

People are already beginning to stress over the holidays. There’s the usual business that just gets people worked up about perfect holidays. Many are trying to figure out how to see family safely in a time of Covid.

I guess spinster life for the win! I’m hoping to put a lot of earnest effort into my book. I have some new friends who might invite me to celebrations that I will have to choose to be a part of or not depending on size and what types of precautions they are taking.

Sometimes it’s hard to go through life without a huge family, but I have some great people who look out for me. I’m blessed I don’t have an irrational fear of doing things alone.

If the right person falls into my life, I have my screening “gang” as a friend and I were joking a week or so ago, we are like bulls. We see the red flag waving and run straight for it to be gored over and over. My gang will run a panel interview to make sure they are an appropriate fit!

Despite continuing to face too many medical decisions, it’s also been a time of freedom. A “friend” chose to walk out of my life. It was one of those kind of moments of relief as I was pushing myself to fit in a mold that she needed me to be in that wasn’t me.

I am not a fan of cliches, but I do believe that when one door closes, another one opens. Sometimes the new door doesn’t open quickly. This time it did. This physically healthy friend (as far as I know) shut the door on me. I was trying to adapt my disabilities to fit her able bodied ways. It was hard. I was also trying to fit myself in a spiritual mold she chose, not me.

Now I’m getting more and more involved in the disability community and feeling grateful for the understanding it brings. My job advocating for people with complex illnesses makes me feel not so alone. While I don’t share a lot about my personal complex illness journey with patients, just hearing them chat about what their lives are like gives me a sense of belonging.

Spinster life. Huh. I also wished I would never be in a wheelchair or be diabetic as I could NEVER poke myself with a needle. While I’m not diabetic, my life entails 5 needles a week minimum. Darn karma with my sparkly pink wheelchair and everything else I couldn’t ever be.

In becoming all those things, I have a richness to my life that no material thing, specific belief, 10 children, a high profile job, or any of the things I thought I would become or tried to mold myself into, I never thought possible.

When I say “richness”, I don’t mean perfect or constant happiness. Richness is in acceptance that it’s hard. I don’t have to fake a smile, but when I do smile, it’s genuine and real as I certainly live a life paved with sparkly pink and several crashes in between to make it interesting.

Love

Lizzie

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