Over the last week I’ve had to mark off “single” on forms and applications and surveys.
And each time I’ve cringed.
Today, sitting in church, about to do communion, I was waiting to hear a phrase I’ve grown to loathe “grab one other person”.
(99% of my friends are attached to one other person).
I am pretty great on my own. I’ve written about being single. I can sit at bars and restaurants by myself. I can travel by myself. I can make my own decisions. I got this.
But, if I’m being honest; being single isn’t a flag I wave.
I wear my singleness as a shield.
I wear my singleness as a shield because if I’m being honest- I’m terrified.
(My head is full of disclaimers right now and I’m choosing not to write them)
I wear my singleness as a shield because it’s easier then having to admit that I still have stuff to deal with in regards to the opposite sex.
I wear my singleness as a shield because I know I’m enough for myself.
I wear my singleness as a shield because it’s less heartbreaking than feeling left out.
I wear my singleness as shield because I’d rather a shield than shame.
I wear my singleness as a shield because it’s easier to use it then have it use me.
The thing about it though is this: I am not the only one.
And it’s not just being single. It’s whatever box you have to tick, identifier that others place on you, comfort blanket you throw on your lap to protect you from what’s happening around you.
While those statements were hard to write, I know, without a shadow of a doubt that I’m not the only one.
I am not the only one who uses something that isn’t a bad thing as a protection.
Hell, there are times in my life that I use my Christianity as a shield.
And I can hear you out there.
Shield does NOT = excuse.
That’s not what this is about.
This is me choosing to tell you that there are things in my life that I am well aware I am doing. There are places that I haven’t gone and walls I haven’t scaled and journeys I haven’t chosen to walk into because I will have to set down that shield (whatever it may be) and be willing to take the arrows.
This is me choosing to tell you for as much as I am “man up or shut up” or “do the damn thing”, that you are not alone in needing to feel defended.
If this was Meghan circa 2012 I’d probably tie this up with a statement about Jesus. I’ve reached the point in my life, to know that Jesus is not the answer to the question.
Meghan of 2018 knows that I’ve been given the tools, the mind, the heart and the spirit to get through and work through the things
I am going to say to you- encourage you, to name your shields.
Name those things you use. Those words, those jobs, those people, those places in your life you need protection,
That’s all I’m encouraging you to do.
Name your shields.