7.5
March 20, 2018

I’m Done with the Circus—I’m Single by Choice.

Are you done with being asked why you’re single, as if it’s a bad thing, as if you’re not enough on your own?

Are you done with answering to social expectations, or having people reassure you there’s nothing wrong with you, even when you didn’t imply that there was?

I’m done with dating.

It’s a circus I ran away with many moons ago. Now, as I return to myself—to all the parts I’ve neglected—here’s a message to the myriad males I met in the madness, and why I’m choosing, yes choosing, to be single:

I’m done.

I’m done having my kindness mistaken for weakness, having my generosity used against me.
I’m done feeling used for sex, security, shelter, counsel, or as a thrill, a chase, a challenge, a boost, or a bit of fun…

I’m done with you being there for the good times, then gone when I need you.
I’m done bending over backward and jumping through hoops…

I’m done shrinking my accomplishments so as not to intimidate you, or, aggrandizing them in order to feel worthy.
I’m done with that whole hall of mirrors, that tightrope I made myself walk, time after time…

I’m done hiding my vastness of life experience so you don’t feel insecure.
I’m done smiling and pretending and playing small so you can take center stage…

I’m done with your serenades, sweet talk, pretty lies, and empty promises all to try to get what you want.
I’m done with all those tricks that work on teenage girls who haven’t seen through your illusions yet…

I’m done being swept off my feet, only to be dropped, depending on your desires, your options.
I’m done having my heart opened up, then having to try to close it down…

I’m done with, “We need to talk,” “I can’t commit,” “I’m confused,” “It’s not you, it’s me.”
I’m done being labeled warrior, saviour, and strong enough to take it, as if that excuses your sh*tty, self-serving deeds…

I’m done being there for you to mess up and make your mistakes on, teaching you how to love before you go off and love somebody else.
I’m done with your social media posts, displaying how easily you move on, before crawling back after it all goes wrong, asking for another chance…

I’m done being your bright “beacon of light,” here to save you or to show up your shadow-side, while you project your darkness, your woundedness, and all your unresolved issues onto me.
I’m done with you trying to steal my sunshine, snuff my flame and dull my spark…

I’m done with drama, mind games, and addictions, with power struggles and put-me-downs, with jealousy, violence, clenched fists, and punched walls.
I’m done proving my integrity when it was your own integrity you smashed to pieces…

I’m done being another pretty ribbon marking your journey, when I’ve already reached the end of my road.
I’m done with your immaturity, with waiting, and hoping for you to grow up, to catch up…

I’m done with “magazine dreams,” media, and fairy-tale force-fed fallacies.
I’m done with fortune-tellers, psychics, and platitudes I never sought, saying, “He’s just around the corner.” I’ve been turning corners to dead-ends for decades…

I’m done with the limiting belief that a life partner will rescue and complete me, doing disservice to the life that already is.
I’m done sacrificing the beauty of the present for the fantasy of a future that may not exist…

I’m done being on the lookout for love, whilst traveling, festival-going, and exploring—always feeling that something is missing, that I’m unfulfilled, and wasting away.
I’m done wasting energy and time…

I’m done starving on crumbs of affection and scraps of attention, which only exacerbate my hunger.
I’m done with candyfloss flings that dissolve to nothing and fireworks that fizzle leaving a gaping dark void I wasn’t aware of before…

I’m done with spiritual bypassing, new age clauses, cliches, and waivers; I’ve heard them all, seen them all, been there and got the (tie-dyed) T-shirt. I’ve got the kaftan, the harem pants, the whole damn wardrobe, and I’m done wearing it all—I’m donating…

Because there are infinite causes crying out for love, way worthier than the empire of your ego, and I’ll be soiling my hands for better purposes now. I’ll be digging a well to unearth whatever it is, deep down, that must be wrong in me to have attracted all of you…

I’m not bitter; I glean moments of joy from many of these memories. I’m not a man-hater—half of my friends are men, whom I love. I’m not perfect—I had my parts to play, I acted like it was okay when it wasn’t, and I’m done with that stage now. I’m so done…

But for one final thing…

If you encourage success, and aren’t threatened by it; if you want an equal, not an inferior; if you’re kind, not just critical; if you care, not control; if you give, not just take; if you’re a man, not a boy, then by all means, step forward—because I won’t be out looking for you, not anymore…

Otherwise, I’m stronger single, better off alone. I know who I am and where I stand, and it’s taken being broken to find my way back to the bare truth, to reclaim my wholeness, as I do now.

So don’t ask me why I’m single, as if it’s a shortcoming. Not when I have come such a long way…

I’ve helped others through their worst times, yet when my own world crumbled and I lost everything—the one time I really required a partner—I walked through the wreckage of my life without one.

I’m done makes way for many new I am’s: I’m boundless, I’m free, I’m self-respecting, and I’m grateful. For all the lessons. For the clarity. For the fresh landscapes of being single by choice…so far beyond the circus.
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Editor’s Note: this is an excerpt from Kate’s upcoming novel, Tribe 35, which is currently in development. 

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Author: Kate Sundara
Image: Unsplash/Lea Dubedout
Editor: Travis May
Copy & Social Editor: Catherine Monkman

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Sherry Guastini Jul 29, 2019 3:05pm

Perfectly timed article, thank you for sharing.

Sophie Brunson Jul 28, 2019 8:15am

Completely – and utterly – where I’m at.
Thankyou

thandiwemasaisai Jul 27, 2019 7:46pm

This was everything and more. I cannot wait to read your book.

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Kate Sundara

Kate Sundara is an artist and author of magic realism novels, The United States of Us (published) and Tribe 35 (in development). She travels the world as a hunter-gatherer of stories and writes multidimensional novels based on a lifetime of colourful experiences.

Kate trained to be an actor, but found more meaning in dreaming up characters from the heart. Her mission is to create “story-medicine” with healing, heartfelt narratives that are ultimately uplifting, inspiring, and life-affirming.

Kate runs workshops at mind, body, spirit festivals, based on the themes addressed in her books, interweaving love, lightwork, legend, nature, travel, fantasy-adventure, spiritual expansion, and all things cosmic.

She recently emerged from the wilderness and joined social media. Connect with Kate on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and her blog for more juicy content.