Wikipedia describes tumbleweed as “the above-ground part of a plant that, once mature and dry, disengages from the root and tumbles away in the wind. Usually, the tumbleweed is the entire plant apart from the roots, but in a few species it is a flower cluster”. Now you may wonder why Project 44 is venturing into an agricultural angle (remember when we wrote about zero-grazing? ;)), but stick with me.
There is a lot of talk about how the rate of marriage is falling like a meteorite and the rate of dissolution of marriages is rocketing; I recently thought about all the pressure that some Eves and Adams are under to settle down and I was reminded of a comment that one of our guest writers and an avid fan said a couple of weeks ago in response to one of the posts by another guest writer. He said that “we must as individuals accept that the society is changing……………………….We cannot ignore that the so called development has had an impact on the family unit and by extension, the marriage institution”. (Charles, something else you said stuck with someone ;)).
I think that this societal change has also had an impact on the choice of whether to check oneself into the institution that is marriage, or even at the least, whether or not to make the choice to enter into any union at all. There are Eves and Adams out there who, probably on a brisk and sunny day with a little breeze blowing, decided that in life, they do not want to tie any knot with anyone. Then there are a number of Eves and Adams who may have reached that decision as a result of disappointments in their relationships gone; the past, as far as love and romance is concerned, is one that is heavily overshadowed by memories of cumulonimbus (remember those clouds that are responsible for rain, lightning and thunder?). Wherever they are coming from, they have arrived at the same juncture – they do not need to find the “burning bush moment” where “the one” will be revealed to them and therefore they have no intention of settling down. This is the point at which I thought about the tumbleweed – the maturity, disengagement and flying away in the wind – the free spirited-ness of it all.
There is a school of thought out there that believes that there is someone for everyone. There is also a school of thought that says that men and women were put here on earth to come together, be one, procreate and try to fill the earth. I aver that there is a school of thought out there that believes that marriage is not for everyone; that not everyone has to be paired up as was done at the time of Noah’s ark in order to flourish and survive in this world. The reason behind the pressure to settle down or marry is so that one is accepted as being capable of ‘holding their own’ as far as societal responsibilities are concerned; it is seen as a sign of maturity, never mind the double digits that one has covered in terms of years here on earth.
Often times, society’s perception is that it is those Eves who have made it career-wise that are not keen to settle down; the view is that, now that they have made it in the boardroom, conference room or simply behind the large mahogany desk, they feel self-sufficient and do not need a man to complete them. Somehow, this perception is usually less than positive. As time goes by, Eve will be known as a spinster and much as we try, that word cannot be mentioned or used without even a trace of disparaging inclination. If one is to flip the coin and look at a man who is well-off and has made his name in his trade, he is deemed to be positively unattached. The Adam who decides to live the single life and not settle down will be viewed as the eligible bachelor sought after by women. The world is not fair.
Yes, companionship is great and no one wants to spend lonely days and nights alone but if certain Eves and Adams decide to live it out by themselves, I say they should be allowed to make this choice without pressure to fit into societal norms. It doesn’t mean that they are cynical about love and romance; it is just that they don’t feel that this recipe would work out for them. For the Eves and Adams who have made this choice, living with it is usually not a problem for them; it is those around them who find it difficult to accept and live with that decision and unfortunately, the Eve or Adam in questions probably has to undergo a lot of second or third degree treatment just because they chose not to go with the norm of society. As a result, some Eves and Adams in this category might find themselves in less than ideal situations where they have to come into some sort of arrangements in order to ward off raised eyebrows and unrelenting questions from society.
Choice is a great thing. We may not always agree with other people’s choices, but it is important to respect them all the same.
Have your say.
“Sometimes I wonder if men and women really suit each other. Perhaps they should live next door and just visit now and then.” – Katherine Hepburn