Imagine this: You're at a friend's wedding, and the table they sat you at is divided. The table is comprised of couples who are engaged, in a five-year relationship, in a seven-year relationship or have been dating for a month.
And there you are, with your plus one, just staring at the others while they make out.
This has been my life for the past year. Apparently, it will continue to be like that, since another one of my friends recently got engaged.
Too many weddings, flights and dresses have been ruling my life for a while now. While my friends seem to have it all together with their jobs, weddings and houses, I'm here, still trying to figure out a way to wash my clothes with a steamer and kitty litter.
How does it feel to be the last single girl in your group of friends? Most of all, it's annoying. But it's also ridiculous.
I'm 24 years old, and even though I haven't managed to graduate on time, I do live alone and work. I keep a cat alive, and have a vision for my life.
Those who seem to have it all together keep asking me when I'll get a boyfriend, and if I envision a white dress wedding and a dream house. But the truth is, I've never been sure of what my future looks like.
I've always been sure of what I want to be, though. I want to be great.
Many will tell you that to achieve greatness, you can't have a man and family. Others will tell you that you can have it all. (Look at Angelina Jolie.)
But I have never been able to decipher exactly what I want to be great at.
Just like many of you, I have been through phases. I wanted to be a ballet dancer, and then, that dream died with my Achilles tendon.
I wanted to be a model, and then that died when I didn't even try. Then, I wanted to be a writer.
The way I have been living my dream is extremely different from the way my friends have been living theirs, and I have never understood them. This is the same way in which they have never understood me.
I am the weird girl who moved away from home, who is majoring in something no one really understands (not even me) and who doesn't have a boyfriend because she's too busy trying to figure out what the hell is going on in the world, and how she fits in it.
Being the last single girl at 24 in my circle of friends is so weird. At first, I felt out of place. I didn't want to go to parties or dinners because I just didn't fit in.
They were all talking about wedding expenses, buying houses, how many kids they want to have and which schools they want to send them to. They were talking in another language my brain has not yet evolved to understand.
But that's when I realized being the last single girl at 24 is not that bad.
While they are all worrying about weddings, houses and kids, I am worrying about becoming the best version of myself. I have no idea if they became the best version of themselves when they fell in love or if they're still working on it, but I feel there's some kind of pressure on them to define themselves based on what their SOs do.
I don't know if I'm a feminist. I don't know if we can have it all.
I honestly have no idea what will happen to women like me, who are disasters on first dates and never get past them, but are pretty good girlfriends. I have no idea what the future holds for someone who craves adventure and greatness all the time, who thinks getting married young is a mistake and who finds the idea of children, baby bumps and placenta-eating material worthy of a Hitchcock movie.
I can't say I'm fine being single forever and never having a family, but I can say I'm OK finding out what my life will be at my own pace.
Being pressured by society to find a man, marry and birth children is not something I let myself get bullied into anymore. It only caused depression, anxiety and desperation, which I'm sure men can detect from a mile away.
I guess what I'm trying to say is women shouldn't feel pressure because they're the last, single 24-year-olds among their friends. At 24, all the doors are still open.
There's worlds to explore, jobs to succeed and fail at and many, many men to date. We are just keeping our doors open.
Being the only one at the wedding table with a friend as opposed to a partner is OK. If what I've learned at the last wedding is any indication, you're the one who'll have the most fun.