Life in the Single Lane: Finding Joy in the Journey of Singlehood by Anita Komukama demystifies the myths of singleness while advocating for single men and women to find joy in the single lane. Simply put, the author emphasizes that there is nothing wrong with being single.
Anita uses six life stories alongside her own to weave a concrete tale about life in the single lane. The struggles and pressures faced: societal pressure, mental illness, ticking biological clock, putting yourself out there and so much more. Each chapter ends with reflective notes and a call to action.
In Time is of the essence, we see Saana who proposes to a man because she is 35 and he is 40 and the parents are mounting pressure on both parties to settle down. She pays for the traditional wedding to make things easy for the man. Her family is happy because finally, their daughter is settling down. Through Saana`s story, Anita dissects the famous you are getting old and need a partner asap syndrome. What does it profit a man or woman to get a partner without any serious consideration of what he/she desires?
The Secret Life of A Splintered tackles the notion, `mental illness has no face’. One might have it all but still, be in a dark place mentally. Anita recommends that while single, start doing the hard work-dig up the trauma with the help of a counsellor or therapist. You need to be well for yourself not just so you get a partner. Your mental well-being is important and ought to be worked on. Do not think that getting married will solve your issues. It will not.
In Weighing it all Out, twins Opio and Acen are unmarried and mum dearest wants to know why? Acen has been dating her boyfriend for a year and a half but no wedding bells. Opio is said to be single because he is `picky.’ People always want to explain why they think one is single. It must be because she/he has high standards, is an overachiever’, over-thinker, picky and assertive. The author advocates weighing it all. Find out why you want to get married and why get married to that particular person. Have you weighed all your pros and cons before committing to another human being?
In Putting Yourself Out There, Denis, a 40-year successful corporate man, has it all: a car, a successful job, a company, good values and looks except a wife. His best friend, Duncan advises him to put himself out there to find a lady to marry.
I have been told time and again that I need to put myself out there. And I often wondered what `out there’ meant. Is it a place that has men of marriageable stature waiting for single ladies to marry? Anita brilliantly explains the intricacies of putting yourself out there.
As a 30-year-old, I related to the stories not because I have experienced all the pressures talked about but because I too have my pressure tales. The famous question why aren`t you married yet? from well-meaning friends and relatives. My sister got married last year and I was thanked for `allowing’ her to get married before me! Then the sighs, eh your friend is married and you aren`t? oba you speak too much English?? from some relatives. The desire to shrink me and settle for what I don`t want due to pressure was real but not anymore. There is more to life than pining over marriage. We are wholesome beings who should focus on all facets of our lives like career, purpose, personal development, finances, travel, talent development and more.
The author admonishes the reader to find joy in being single. Joy takes on different shapes for each individual. For example travel, singing, dancing, reading, hiking, the pursuit of a career, buying a car or reading couch, therapy, swimming, education advancement, business and drawing.
Live in the moment and stop trying to get yourself hitched to every man or woman that comes your way.
What reasons have you been given for being single? I am curious to hear what the men have been told.