One of my favourite movies is “Out of Africa” where a tragically married Meryl Streep (Karen) falls in love with Robert Redford (Denys), a free spirit who is unwilling to settle down, until (spoiler alert) he decides, at the very end, to make his way back to her only to crash his plane en route – devastating! Regardless, one of the best lines in the movie comes near the end of the film, when Redford’s character says, “You ruined it for me you know?”, and Meryl answers: “What?” to which he replies with a defeated look in his eye, “Being alone.” I know, I know… and your point is? I’m getting there, read on.
Serenity in solitude
After a lovely chat with a friend of mine earlier today, it became suddenly clear how my perspective on solitude and singledom has changed. After five years of being in a committed relationship, I no longer crave downtime. I don’t need time alone to gather my thoughts, and, given the chance, I would always choose to have my husband at home, than away traveling for work, or out with the guys. As the words came out of my mouth, I found myself shaking my head, wondering when the freedom seeking Sagittarius had swapped her bow and arrow for a broom and dustpan? Who am I? I suddenly realized that I’m no longer just a woman, a writer, a traveler, a runner, a friend, a lover, etc. In addition to being all these other things, that I always was, now, I’m also someones wife . Gulp!
Forget the fact that I spent an hour on my hair, 20 minutes on my makeup, 30 minutes picking out an outfit and another 10 minutes changing until finally satisfied with the get-up de soir – this guy chose to focus on the one attribute I was actually trying to play down; my height.
No pun intended, my appreciation for heels has definitely hit its highs and lows. I kid you not, more than once, some guy strolled up to me in the bar and stared in awe, mumbling on about how tall I am – as if, by some miracle, this fact hadn’t formerly been brought to my attention. Now, the staring in awe part I didn’t mind so much, and more often than not this line was just an unfortunate – and unsuccessful – effort to pick me up (not literally – thank god), but once in a while I would come across someone who would decide to point it out – just for fun, and those were the times that as a woman pushing 6 feet, I wished I could cut myself off at the ankles and just blend in.