This is my treatise. It’s called Being a Single Mormon female over 30. Being a single Mormon female over 30 means you’ve been asked the question, Why are you still single? Upwards of 900 million times. Being a single-mormon female over 30 means that you’ve been set up by just about everyone in your life. Often with men you had nothing in common with but church. Hope you like talking about the brother of Jared because these guys aren’t interested in anything else about you. Being a single-mormon female over 30 means developing spinal problems from hunching over the kid’s table and sleeping on deflated twin air mattresses at family functions. Being a single-Morgan female over 30 means you’ve made meaningful eye contact with hundreds of other people’s babies over the back of a queue. Being a single-Morgan female over 30 means you’re a world-class third wheel, fifth wheel, seventh wheel, ninth wheel, putting the odd in every odd, numbered social vehicle since your friends started pairing up too early in middle school. It means not decorating for Christmas or other holidays because you’ll do that when your real life starts. Sometimes it also means putting off doing other things, like learning to budget or slowing down when you need to, or or liking yourself.
It means you sometimes wonder if your person died in a fire when they were 17, or was eaten by a bear, or fell off a train into a pit of spikes. It means wanting to strangle anyone who says, Maybe you’ll marry Maronite in the next life. Ha ha ha. It means you’ve likely gotten older than every aunt and young woman leader that people bring up to give you hope. Oh, my Aunt so and so didn’t get married until she was 31. Well, it’s over now. Your Aunt so and so now. It means that when people start talking about a woman’s qualifications to get into the highest degree of the and gospel doctrine, you prefer to think about Job of the Hutch. It means you’ve been on so many horrible dates that you very seriously considered rolling out of at least five moving vehicles. It means you’ve long thought that the law of chastity should have some punchcard system, where after a half years of obeying it without getting married, you get like a free couch or a slurpy machine, even a sandwich, or you get to have sex with someone. How about that? It means having at least one ex that you regret breaking up with on your bad days and you still have weird dreams about sometimes.
It means that when you realize your life, being single at your age, is so many people’s worst fear. It makes you feel powerful beyond all reason. I’m living your worst fear, baby, and I’m pretty happy. It means you sometimes spend as much time feeling like you must have done something really wrong as some married people spend feeling like they must have done something really right. It means that you started out looking for the one, only to realize at some point that you were the one all along. I hate it when cliches are true. It means becoming well-versed in things like lactation and school pickups and brain without having a single ounce of first hand experience. It means sometimes attending a baby shower for a cat, which I did last summer because you and your other single friends are slowly realizing that showers are only reserved for wives and mothers, and that’s BS. It means you went through a phase where you looked at widows and divorces and thought awful things like, at least someone married them, and then you immediately got struck by lightning because that’s a horrible thing to think. It means you’ve kissed a lot of frogs and you’ve also been a frog.
It means you sometimes catch yourself doing the frantic math of how many years you have before your oldest niece or nephew gets and has sex before you. It means you can only buy non-perishables at Costco. Ever since that one time, you tried to get through a Costco pack of peaches all by yourself and had diarrhea for six days. It means you’ve talked yourself into countless social functions thinking, Maybe I’ll meet my husband here. Only to find yourself trapped in an endless, nightmare-ish conversation about abortion with the most unpleasant person at the party. It means you have flipped over every rock on the planet to figure out what’s wrong with you: childhood trauma, too high maintenance, too low maintenance, too lazy, not enough makeup, too much makeup, not attractive enough, trust issues with men, too angry, too opinionated, too complicated, too much work. Because the longer you’re single, the longer you’ve had to wonder how your singleness is your fault. And the more it feels like utter proof that every last one of your insecurities is true, it means hoping that your singleness is your fault, because then at least you’d have answers and it would feel like you had control.
It means that there are days where you feel like being anything other than beautiful, like being smart or funny or successful or passionate is the absolute worst thing that you could be when you’re trying to attract a man. It breaks your heart every time they don’t like you for the reasons you like you. They just care how you look. The older you get, the less they care that you’re getting even better because you look worse. It means wondering if you were born into any other church or situation, if you’d be married by now, or would you even care? It means you sometimes consider wearing a wedding ring just so the old men in your new family ward will stop assuming you’re hitting on them when you offer to help them with things. It means that you finally stopped looking at your life like an exhausting, fruitless search and more like an exhilarating thrill ride full of constant potential. It means you’ve slowly learned to appreciate love, all love, not just romantic love. It means that you’ve come to learn that marriage is not the cure of loneliness. It means that you sometimes get to be that friend who’s been single this whole time, baby.
When your friends get divorced and need a soft place to land. It means going solo to movies and dinners and plays and on trips and at first worrying, you’ll feel lonely. But in reality, you end up learning to love your own company in the sound of silence and making new friends with strangers and the grace of God and how beautiful the world is and how lucky you are to be in it. Because being a single Mormon female over 30 means that when people ask the albeit extremely tired question, Why are you still single? You’ve learned with time and in full sincerity to say, I don’t know, just lucky, I guess. Thank you for your time.