It’s been a busy twenty-four hours, leaving me with mixed emotions.
First the good news: my sister got engaged over Shabbat! I’m very happy for her. Her fiancé is a really nice guy and I get on well with him (fortunately). I think they will be very happy together. I’m also happy for my parents, who have watched from the sidelines as most of their friends’ children have married and had children. At least my parents have a chance of being grandparents now.
The not-so-good news: I have been on two dates with someone over the last week, the second being a walk in the park on Shabbat (as she lives locally). I thought it was going well even though my mental health issues came up. But at the end she said she wants some time to think about whether she wants to go out with me again, which I took as an indication that she probably isn’t that interested, although maybe that’s reading too much into it. Maybe she just wanted time to think about my mental health. I don’t know.
It was quite difficult that both these things happened within a few hours of each over. I have some really conflicted emotions right now. Fortunately my mood overall is still OK, although because of it I did go to bed really late (after 3am) because I was watching Doctor Who and emailing a friend, trying to process everything that had happened and to relax. Then I slept through the whole morning and got up at noon. I am trying to be more forgiving of myself when I do things like this now as I know I need to do it sometimes for my mental health, even though I missed most of Shacharit and lost the morning.
Right now I have two verses going through my head. One is, “Is not Aharon (Aaron) the Levite your brother?… and also behold he is coming to meet you and when he sees you he will rejoice in his heart.” (Shemot 4.14 concerning Aharon rejoicing over Moshe (Moses) becoming the leader of the Israelites, even though he was displacing his elder brother Aharon who, unlike Moshe, had been with the Israelites in their suffering in Egypt). The other is “This is not done in our place, to give the younger in marriage before the elder.” (Bereshit 29.26, concerning Yaakov (Jacob) being tricked into marrying Leah before her younger sister Rachel). I feel happy for my sister, but also frustrated that my little sister is getting married and I might not even have another date. When we have two conflicting verses we search for a third to reconcile them, but I haven’t found it yet.
I did think on Friday, before all this started, that if I have to be single my whole life, I can accept it. I’m lonely, I want to love and be loved, to have companionship and children and being a virgin in my mid-thirties is increasingly difficult, but I can cope with those things. I have lived by myself for nearly a year now and I have survived (admittedly mostly going home for Shabbat and Yom Tov). I see no reason why I can’t survive indefinitely like this. But I don’t want to just survive, I want to be happy and loved. I wonder if that will ever happen.