RONDA RICH: Being single can be an enormous blessing

Photo by Vicki Harris

Photo by Vicki Harris

A while back, after a speaking engagement, I was signing books when a woman, somewhere in her 40s, I suppose, came through the line. We exchanged courtesies then I handed her books back to her.But she didn't walk away, despite the long line of folks waiting behind her. She looked at me expectantly then leaned a little closer.

"You're not married, right?" I smiled and shook my head. An unmistakable look of kinship lighted up her face. "Well, well," she searched for the words. I glanced at her left hand. No ring. "So, you just don't want to be married?" She was looking for encouragement, I suppose.

How do you answer that in 6 seconds? How do you explain your reasoning and lifestyle in one or two sentences? Now, I groped for the words. "Well, well, well, I, uh."

"Do you date?" she asked. I felt indignant. It did not settle well over my spirit.

"Yes, I date," I responded a bit briskly, perhaps. "I'm very fortunate because I've met a lot of terrific guys in my life." Then, I reached behind her and took a book from someone else so she got the message and moved on.

I shook off my aggravation. I am not married by choice and not by chance.

I am fortunate in that aspect. I have several single friends who never meet anyone to date. My life is different, though, in that I travel a great deal and my arena is big so I meet great people all the time. I also meet a lot of nuts, too, but that's another column.

I'll just say this: I've come to the conclusion that there are more nuts in this world than there are sane people.

It's funny how you won't think about something until someone probes as she did then you begin to ponder and look for the answer. As a writer, I always want to be able to sum it up and answer it thoroughly.

Why haven't I been more interested in marrying? So, I stepped back, took a strong, appraising look at my dating life and I came up with the answer.

Quite simply, I love and cherish the lovely, sweet life I have. It's uncomplicated and, to be honest, self-indulgent. I am only concerned with what concerns me.

I don't have to make plans based on another's thoughts or schedule. I buy what I want, without asking permission or explaining. I eat crackers in bed, without a thought to the crumbs. I don't vacuum.

Ronda Rich is a syndicated columnist and author. Her column appears in The Citizen every Sunday. Visit www.rondarich.com to sign up for Ronda Rich's weekly newsletter.