Being single is not always easy, and it’s definitely not always fun.
By TAMAR CASPI
As my friend Julie continues the seemingly never-ending, exhausting search for her beshert, she also has to continue to bear witness to all of her friends’ developing love, elaborate weddings and constantly expanding families. She is the perfect cheerleader and is the first to volunteer to help plan showers, parties, getaways, registries and everything else love-related, and spends a lot of her hard-earned money on participating.She does it with a genuine smile on her face, but I know it adds up and gets her down.I suggested she do what Carrie Bradshaw did on Sex and the City and register for a pair of Manolo Blahniks. I was half-joking until I came across a new website. It’s called www.depositagift.com and you can register for whatever you want, whenever you want.Julie hated the idea of an “Independence Party” because although she is independent, she doesn’t want to rejoice in the fact that she’s alone. Instead, the concept of “Celebrate Julie” would present the perfect opportunity for Julie’s friends to celebrate her for no particular reason – for her support, her love, her friendship – and I implored Julie to create a profile on Deposit a Gift and start registering for items.Everyone can return the selfless favors she’s done for them by being a co-hostess; the former brides can even wear the ridiculous bridesmaid dresses they inflicted upon Julie.Even though Julie has flown across the country and even to destination weddings in other countries, the people who say they can’t afford or don’t have the time to attend the “Celebrate Julie” party can donate toward the event on the website.Although it may be tacky to calculate how much Julie spent on their simcha, they should take into account how much her friendship means to them, and donate accordingly.AdvertisementIn fact, the whole party would be thrown in Julie’s honor so that she doesn’t have to lift a finger besides typing her wish list into the website. The site would collect funds for different parts of the party – the open bar, the food, the cake, the decor, the gifts and so on – and then distribute the funds once the goal is met.Julie can choose whatever it is she fancies the most – you know, things as ridiculous as $400-a-plate bone china that she will never use. If she wants an $800 white silk Italian-imported handbag that’s going to get filthy and can’t be dry-cleaned, then that is what she’ll get. She can register for a one-year subscription to J*Date; salon visits to keep her looking good for her dates; and a gym membership to keep her feeling good for those dates. There’s even a shopping spree so she can make sure she’s dressed to the nines.I know it’s not Jewish of me to care or ask or expect people to give with the expectation of receiving anything, and especially not something of equal value, but I also don’t think you can put a price on the kind of friend Julie has been.She wants to be in love so badly, and yet wedding after wedding, baby after baby, she is alone – and still she puts on a great big smile for all her friends. She deserves equal-value contributions to her independence/celebration party, maybe greater than equal. She cheers everyone on and tells them everything will be great, and never complains on someone’s special day.Her return on this investment cannot be measured in dollars; but maybe a party in her honor with some designer purses, shoes and clothing will cheer her up. Then she can wear all her new fabulous possessions when she goes out on what will without a doubt be tons of J*Dates with her new upbeat attitude, bolstered by knowing that everyone loves and cares for her as much as she does for them.Being single is not always easy, and it’s definitely not always fun.Once you find someone, you get to start celebrating love left andright, but when you’re single you don’t get to do any of that. I cantell Julie “Your time will come” and “Patience is a virtue,” and anyother number of clichés, but the wait has proved longer and bumpierthan any rabbit hole in Alice in Wonderland: “Eitherthe well was very deep, or she fell very slowly, for she had plenty oftime as she went down to look about her and to wonder what was going tohappen next.”Such is life as a singleton, and eventually Julie will make it to theend of the tunnel and have a tea party to celebrate her engagement.Until then, I’ll continue to make sure we have plenty of girls’ nightsout and conversations that aren’t centered around weddings, babies andhouses, and that Julie feels as special as she is.And, in the meantime, hopefully Julie will give me permission to gatherall her girlfriends together to throw her a fabulous “Celebrate Julie”party.
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