Independence Day is a special day, here at On Her Own. While you may be here for a whole host of reasons, the core of OHO has always been finding ways to survive and thrive as women who are independent from the normal relationships society assumes for us. Whether by choice or by circumstance, for days or for years, we may today or at some other time be childless, partner-less, parent-less, and other ways considered “less.”
But we are not “less.” We are complete as ourselves, without needing to be somebody’s somebody. We may enjoy being attached to another, miss it, seek it, but we do not require that connection to make our way through life. Even without some or all of those relationships to define us, we can thrive.
There are moments when mere survival might seem more challenging because we’re doing it without the material and moral support that comes with traditional relationships, because we have to work so hard to understand and assert our value and our competence. And yet, there are also moments when that is freedom – freedom from obligation, freedom from expectation, freedom from convention. They may be burdens we would willingly, even eagerly, take on if only we could, but we still may secretly or not-so-secretly enjoy those times we are not weighed down by them.
So this weekend, celebrate your independence. Perhaps it’s the independence of an hour or three you’ve carved out for yourself, to be you, for only you. Perhaps it’s the reluctant independence when left bereft by loved ones, during which you’ve found an inner strength you didn’t know you had to move one foot in front of the other at a walk, then a run, then leaping forward into your future. Perhaps it’s the hard-won independence you’ve created through challenging choices, that you haven’t stopped to appreciate while you continue to battle. Whatever, wherever, however you are on your own, celebrate. I’ll see you back here next week, as we continue to explore how to make the best of it.