On Friday night, I stood quietly and watched the bright showers of sparks flowing from the firework on the ground. To my right was my dear friend Lauren and her husband. To my left, my newly married friend Ashley and her husband. And in that moment, I had a choice.
I could feel sorry for myself, upset that I was spending yet another night as a third or fifth wheel. I could let that shadow of loneliness fill my mind, telling me there is something wrong with me, and that’s why I was standing there by myself.
Or I could just be happy that I was spending time with amazing friends, shooting off fireworks to celebrate the 4th. I could be happy that I was hanging out with girls I’ve known for years, that our friendships had changed but survived, that their husbands are so awesome and always willing to help out. (One hauled off all the dead fireworks, another filled a giant bucket of water and carried it for me.)
I chose to be happy. We were all talking and catching up, laughing and telling stories from our past, and just having a good time. Yes, it would be nice if I had someone there with me, someone putting their arm around me as we leaned against the SUV watching the fireworks. But if I let being single keep me from being happy in moments like this, I’m going to miss out on so much.
There are definitely moments when I let myself be sad, to wish I wasn’t alone. Often, it would be easier to feel sorry for myself and wallow. Instead I choose to be happy where I’m at.
And this afternoon, while I drive around neighborhoods looking for “For Rent” signs before heading to view yet another property, I’m going to choose to be happy. Even though I’d rather scream or cry in frustration…