An open letter to you, my sweet single

Dear Sweet Single,

Welcome to this moment. I know, you may have been avoiding it. Maybe you’ve already believed the lie that there is nothing to gain out of this time of singleness. I’ve been there, more than you know.

I know you’re hesitant to take the advice of someone who isn’t putting her own skin in the game.  I’m with you. Sometimes it’s painful to wear your heart on your sleeve. So let me go first.

You’re not the only one in a knock-down-drag out fight to win your life back from disappointment. I’ve got scars too, and sometimes I wear my failures like a cheap piece of jewelry I never liked. You’re not the only one who doubts the landing will be smooth. But I want you to know, more than anything, that you’re not alone.

The good part about being single is that it presents to you an untouched universe, a clean slate.  I can see the sparkling lights. It looks like pure belief to me. You might be tempted to unload your baggage on the side of the road and throw up your thumb hoping to God someone will pull over to scoop you up to save you from the moments when you feel alone, but let me tell you this:

Dear sweet single, your gift to the world is your pure-hearted bravery. 

Yes this. So simple, it will probably make you roll your eyes. But you know that feeling after a fall, when the words have been said, and there’s nothing to do but pack up and go? The air feels fresh. The earth moves different under your feet. But don’t look down yet. The goal is to keep moving.

Focus is everything. It’s like riding a bike. You will lose your balance if you keep looking down, or worse yet, behind you. You’ve come to far to believe the white-castled fantasies and illusory affection. You’re smart. You’re intuitive. And you’ve got a depth that syncopates with the pain of others. Be ok with your scars. Out of the ashes has risen a new kind of beauty.

It wasn’t the kind you dreamed of at the makeup counter when you bought that tenth shade of lipstick. It’s deep and resonant like the sound of a concert grand piano. Your substance is your presence. You’re sparkling. The ones who tell you otherwise are blind.

 Your past is redeemable. Your beauty is pure. Your love is a chain of secret notes yet to be unfolded.

Don’t give up because the roadmap hasn’t followed straight lines. You will come to find that curves are some of God’s best work.

Don’t be blinded by the sugary heights of success you see on Instagram. If you’ve learned one good thing, it’s that things are not always how they appear. In those twine-wrapped perfect packages is a bunch of tissue paper: empty, cotton candy satisfaction. Put your phone away at the end of the day and stop wishing your life away for the sake of pictures. Let the things that steal your sleep leave your mind. This moment is suitable for you. You’ve got two hands, two feet, and a whole lot of ideas between your ears.

Listen for the way you should go, and don’t lose focus. Ask for directions. Sit in silence in the morning with your Creator to breathe in his love. You won’t get very far without it, doubtless, you will try.  Spread a french linen on your dinner table, put on your favorite pair of earrings, and buy yourself flowers at the market.

Stop disqualifying yourself from the romance of everyday beauty that you crave. It is yours, just thrilled at the moment when you take that first sip of coffee in the morning, when you laugh, when you settle into your favorite blanket or pick an apple from a tree.

You can drop the act of being not enough. It doesn’t suit what you are or will become.

Stop apologizing for taking up space. Others will soon apologize for mistaking your resilience.

And most importantly, when the haters come hating, and you know they will, breathe out and realize that you were once there too. We all had a starting point, and for some of us, it wasn’t so pretty. Give grace, but pull out all the stops. Maximize your time. Make it beautiful. Make it yours. Life waits for no one, but it conspires to bring into fulfillment your wildest dreams if you have the vision to match it.