I am a seraphic single.
Take today, for example. I woke up at six am, briefly wondered whether I was late for something, realized it was Saturday, rolled over and slept in…until eight. Eight am constitutes a sleep in for me. Earlier is work territory and later means your sister has done her homework, been for a run, baked muffins and already had time to get bored…There I go channeling high school again.
Back to this morning: I opened the curtains at eight, looked at the changing leaves in the sun and approved. I made tea and drank it from my Made in Poland cups. (This is a growing collection, and simply looking at my Made in Poland butter dish makes me happy. You must see it yourself, and you will agree.) I made pancakes and checked the internet. I responded to a response from a woman who works in an abortion clinic to my defence of Roxanne’s Law in the Calgary Herald.
Good times for Andrea. And not, perhaps, what I’d be doing if I weren’t single.
I am a seraphic single, except when I’m not. And I wasn’t when I received Seraphic Single: How I learned to stop worrying and love the single life by Dorothy Cummings in the mail, for free. My actual thought was something along the lines of Oh For PETE’S Sake!: Does the one thing I ever receive for free thanks to my blogging have to be a book about singleness? For when I received this book I had just had a relationship end. And abruptly ended relationships disturb the equilibrium and the seraphicity of life, to put it bluntly.
It’s too bad I didn’t have Seraphic’s book earlier. If I had, that ended relationship would have ended approximately two months earlier, sans drama. However, if I have learned one thing from Auntie Seraphic, as she calls herself and is lovingly called by so many, it is to dwell not on the breakups. In fact, her call is not to dwell on relationships at all, unless and until they are engagements or marriages. The terms “boyfriend” and “girlfriend” are made up, and are of little consequence.
Oh, how I could have used this kind of most excellent advice prior to turning 34. Truly. My life would have been happier and more freedom-filled. By this I mean the freedom to figure out my purpose on this great, green earth.
That is what Ms. Cummings has done and helps others to do through her book and blog. The beauty of both is that Auntie Seraphic has the weight of life experience and a theology degree behind her. In short, she is both fun and smart. Books and blogs about dating or being single are spectacularly superficial and something close to idiotic when written by the wrong person. And when written by the wrong religious person, they only get worse. (“I had to wait all the way until I was 22 before I met my husband in my final year!”)
No, Dorothy has depth. She got married to the wrong person young. She experienced the pain and anguish of being lonely in relationship—the sort of loneliness that is a thousand times worse than being single. She had her marriage annulled, which I gather is both important and contentious in Catholic circles, and proceeded to remain single for well over a decade.
That, my friends, makes her qualified to comment on the ups and downs of dating and relationships.
On being Roman Catholic, Auntie Seraphic is, and unabashedly so. However, she writes for people of good faith from other faiths or no faith at all, and the facts of the matter are that any girl who has come round to the idea that perhaps sexual freedom and bedding multiple men isn’t actually a workable solution for the human condition will relate to her kind and candid prose.
She relays in her book all the points she learned along the way, culminating in a tremendous sense that life is worth living whether or not one weds, if we choose to make it so.
The idea behind my blog is to empower women such that they would know because they know within an inch of their lives that abortion is NOT empowering. Ever. That they would be able to defend this view in plain and non-religious terms. That their lives would stand as a testimony to this idea, and that they would share this view in manners that are appropriate with less pro-life friends and family.
The idea behind Seraphic Single, the book and the blog, is to likewise empower women. It’s a tough world for those of us who are conservative (small c) and Christian. I actually believe it is, strangely, our modern feminist friends who tell us we are not quite complete without sexual gratification. And this is the view in most every movie, TV show and above all, the women’s magazines. (“Please him in bed!” “Top ten ways to make him crazy for you!” If these aren’t the actual headlines or something close to the actual headlines in at least one magazine on the rack right now, I’ll eat my Polish teacup.)
So this is me, after a looooonnngg while of thinking about it, writing a recommendation of Dorothy Cummings’ book. It has been hard, because this post is more personal than I like to be in public. But I would like to recommend the book: Buy it, and bookmark her blog. You can read the book when she takes a holiday from blogging, and read the blog when you’ve already read the book. It can do nothing but good for the average single woman today. It has done nothing but good for me, whether I’m in a seraphic, or less-than-seraphic frame of mind.by