I have reached an (old) age where I am increasingly starting to see my friends getting married. There are now 4 couples in my circles of friends who have tied the knot, and wedding number 3 really felt the weirdest because those friends were ones I identified with very strongly: they had been together roughly the same amount of time as Le Poulet and I, they were like us multicultural, young professionnals living a yuppy life while sampling the madness of London. It felt odd when they announced they were getting married, because that was precisely the time Le Poulet and I started to split up. And watching this couple enter the Kingdom of Happiness (as I saw it at the time) while I was sinking into the Bog of Despair (as I saw it at the time) was extremely painful. All this was barely 1.5 years ago.
But, here is the thing. Last week lady friend from couple number 3 told me she was moving out of their house. That there was no future in her relationship with her husband. That she thought might have fallen in love with someone else. And that they were likely to get divorced because the differences between them were too irreconciliable.
That was totally surprising news. Thhey had always projected this happiness, togetherness, complicity. I felt, and still feel very sad. Sad for them both that it's not working out. That something that seemed so beautiful and blissfull was falling apart. And that they were both undergoing so much pain. Also it made me realise that the statistics are right, and that marriages do not have great odds to be Happy and Blissful until the end of time. And that getting married does not really change things much, the problems that were there before remain there, the relationship still needs a huge amount of work to last, and all in all it is not something that on its own can make people happy. I mean it does not transform magically the reality of life into a fairy tale.
I on the other hand, am feeling happier and more free than ever before. Like they say, it's better to be alone than with the wrong person. I am enjoying the singledom and appreciate the fact if I do meet someone serious one day, I now have more tools in my box to know what I want and what would work for me. Am not saying that I suddenly feel smug and happy that the married couple are going through hell, I am just saying it has made me realise that I am not missing that much in my life by not being married, contrary to what I may have thought at the time.
Now there is the question of upcoming marriage number 5: my two best friends ever are getting married next March, and I will be the main witness because I am the one who introduced them. (I know there is no such thing as a main witness, but I view myself as the most important of all the 8 witnesses given that if I did not exist there would be no wedding, ha!).
And I know despite all the talk about me being happy to be single blah blah blah this could sound surprising, but I am dreading, no, in capital letters, DREADING, going to this alone because all the other guests, especially those at the main table, are going to be there two by two by two and I will be left sitting all alone at the end of the table like a rabid dog. And given I have always lived abroad I don't really know most of the other people so it makes it even more scary.
However, thanks to a little help from my friends "Christmas party", "wine", and "surfing Facebook while tipsy", I may (just *may* at this stage) found myself a solution to the problem. But more about that later.