Day one

June 7, 2012 — 57 Comments

Today is day one, of my one thousand single days.
I feel so excited by this that I want to write that same comment over and over again. Today is day one….. today is day one….today is day one.
What do I mean by one thousand single days? I mean, one thousand days of being single. And by single I mean single in every sense of the word.  No men, no dating, no love, no valentines day, no sex. Nothing. Alone.

I want to be alone for one thousand days. And today is day one.

While this decision has admittedly come as the dust is settling from the train wreck conclusion of what was my last relationship, this is not entirely a knee-jerk reaction to it either.
Those who know me well know that the story and conclusion of that relationship took me through every extreme human emotion possible and left me as a tangled heap on the floor of my life and the memories of me as a sobbing, spineless and damaged pathetic mess I suppose have had some influence in the making of this decision. But not entirely.
This is an experiment.
The first relationship I ever had was with Michael who was my neighbour in New Zealand when I was 6 years old. We used to kiss on his trampoline and then go eat his dogs doggie biscuits when his mum wasn’t looking.
It was a beautiful thing.
We were young back then you know, naïve to the ways of the world. I believed I would be with him forever on that same trampoline, eating those same doggy biscuits until we were old and grey.
But it fell apart.
We wanted different things; I guess we were just too different. Plus I got sick of the dog biscuits.
That was 21 years ago. Since then, there have been loves and losses and crushes and kisses and boys who have asked me ‘if I would go steady with them’ and then boys who felt it would be better ‘if we were just friends’ then men who proposed and then the man I married, then the man I divorced, then the man who broke my heart and it has been 21 years of relentless love stories and love tragedies and so this is the question I want to answer:
What would happen, if for one thousand days, I stopped it all?
What would happen, if for one thousand days, I hit pause on love?

This isn’t simply a vow of abstinence; this is far, far more than that. I want to observe what direction my life would take if I suddenly hit the off switch to love.
My hypothesis is this: That if I should completely forget the world of dating, love and everything and anything else in between, then I would be able to rest.
And that is the point. I need a rest. I need a break because I have done some hard time. At 27 years old, I have a broken marriage and a one other very long and painful relationship behind me.
I’m done.
I figure that rather than hoping for a holiday from it all, that I would create one.
And this is what this experiment is all about: Deciding that for one time in my life, I am going to separate myself from that whole dirty, crazy, hectic love thing, and then observe what happens to me during that time.

I was born 10,175 days ago. If I live until I am say… 90, then I will be alive for another 23, 010 days. Give or take a few.
I decided this morning, that 1000 of those remaining days, I want for myself.

Is that okay? To want 1000 days just for me?
To decide something like this is different to having this scenario inflicted upon you by sheer bad luck.
Going 1000 days as a single person isn’t that hard if you just simply cannot get a date, but that isn’t what all of this is all about. This is a choice. Until March 14, 2015, I am choosing to be alone. And what I choose to do with that time, I think, will define me later on.

What is the point of choosing to abstain from something if you don’t then fill that void with something new?
So with this time I have, these 1000 days, I intend to fix………me. I definitely have issues. Honestly? I have Daddy issues. Big time.
I have self esteem issues. I can be pig headed. I think I am always right. I am as stubborn. I hate asking for help and…I make a jealous girlfriend.

Ok, so what? So I said it!  Do you even know how many people just read that who have the same problems? The point is, I plan on acknowledging them, saying them out loud, and then fixing them. I have 1000 days to do so. Seems like ample time.

Another epiphany that led to this decision: Everyone, regardless of age, gender or race has an ideal.

The ideal of a partner. You know how it goes: ‘I want a man/woman who is good looking, at least a 7/10, educated, funny, rich and romantic’ Fill in any spaces you want, or however your particular ideal goes, it may be different or it may be the same but ask yourself this: If you were to meet this magical person, this person who is your ideal…. If you were to meet them in real life… would YOU be the kind of person they would want?

Fair enough to expect certain strengths from another person, but do you have the same strengths? Do you have strengths that a person like that is searching for? I’ve been asking myself this question lately.

I don’t now, nor have I ever, felt that love has been a necessary ingredient in living a good life. I’m sure it sweetens the journey somewhat, but I have never once believed that love is the meaning of life, or anything close for that matter. So, if I were to be in love, it would have to be really, really worth it. It would have to be with someone… extraordinary.

But as I think about it, someone extraordinary, would probably be searching for someone extraordinary too…. Right? Am I her? ……Not at the moment.

Which is another thing. If I am brash enough or confident enough to demand a certain type of person to one day love, then it is only right that I work on who I am to create something beautiful within myself that would appeal to the kind of person I envision spending the rest of my life with.
I want to spend the next one thousand days making a point of developing myself and my skills and learning new things and ticking off all those things on my ‘to do’ list. Its going to be a long 1000 days. I know, and today is only day 1 afterall. But I need this. I need some time to call my own.

And if prince charming comes along my path any time in the next 999 days threatening to sweep me off my feet, then tough shit, I said 1000 days and I mean 1000 days and I feel deep in me that somehow, these next few years are really going to define who I am.


57 responses to Day one


    I actually made a similar pledge about a month ago, but for a much shorter period of three months. I broke it within the first two weeks. I think my first mistake was not making it as drastic – I still wanted to be able to go out dancing and not worry about kissing someone while out, which is basically impossible for me to avoid when out in a club having had a fair few drinks. So I said I could still kiss guys – and I could even maybe go on dates, as long as I only saw the person once a week. All I was really going off was sex and relationships. And… it didn’t work. And I gave up on it after that. So I’ll be curious to see how you manage!

    workspousestory July 23, 2012 at 10:01 PM

    Oh, goodie. So excited to have found your blog. I love your writing style and am impressed by this decision! Go Girl!
    I’ll be back, a lot.


    How exciting! I’ve made much shorter commitments that have been really good for my soul. I just discovered your blog, and I look forward to reading about your journey!


    When I left my ex-husband I knew I wouldn’t date, flirt, etc. until the papers were signed and sealed. We’ve been divorced 90 days and I’m still in no mood for anyone else to intrude in my life. I’m 726 days single. I have never grown more.


      Wonderful. I hope that the last 90 days are only the beginning of a brand new, beautiful life for you and your family.


        Actually, no. He took the children. He told the judge he never wanted me to feel the pain of losing my children, and then said he wanted full custody; which he got. So my 90 days have been, well, a whole nother breakup, but much more painful, which is why I started my blog and will stay single forever.


    This is so awesome!! Good luck!!


    Good luck! I wish you all the best on your new journey.

    bellytobabyandbeyond August 5, 2012 at 6:43 AM

    Good luck! I hope you find everything you’re searching for in yourself and this helps you become who and what yoou want to be!


    Bon courage! Thanks for visiting my site and leading me to yours. If I may take a contrary impression, it is that you are not, in fact taking a break from love; you are loving yourself as you never have before. May you always stick stubbornly to this.


    Wow! Such raw emotion here…you are a brilliant writer with a brave soul. Thanks so much for visiting my little corner of cyberspace! =) Can’t wait to see what happens…


    You happened to “like” my blog, so I visited your blog to see what is all this 1000 single days about!! You’re 28 and divorced. I’m 24 and about to be divorced. And I don’t want the divorce, but can’t help it. My girl loves another man from her past and she can’t live without thinking about him. He is still in touch with her and that is what makes it more difficult. I was friendly with her for 2 years and then married for another 3. It would take a year to legally split as per law. 1 day to get married. 1 year to divorce!

    Anyway getting back to your story, I like the way you acknowledge your defects as you like to see them. But I don’t think “the jealous girlfriend” is a negative point! In fact I wish I had someone like that.

    I also like that “Ideal Partner” thing you talk about. I couldn’t help but laugh, because I got friendly with a girl who I didn’t imagine as “Ideal”. I never conditioned the relationship, yes but she did and I was unaware! which brings me to your second point… she had conditions which I didn’t meet, though for me, she is PERFECT as she is, no matter what she says or does!

    And staying single for 3 years is no big deal. I believe you can do it. You just need to know for sure if that is all you want and need!

    One more thing, there are very few women who acknowledge their mistakes, so I think your being rather BRAVE.

    I have given myself a period of 5 years before I see an overall improvement in myself because there are a lot of things that are missing from my life. In fact I am writing a book about those factors which cause these faults, and your (including mine) story further adds value to why those factors are important. That book should be ready in 1 year because it requires study and data to be collected, analysed and then generalized.

    Best of Luck and Happiness to your mission. I believe you can do it, because I am doing it!

    A wise man once said, “Do not only seek what is known, lest you be left in the lurch of what is unknown!” — Chris Maelzer

    PS: This is my longest comment ever!!


    Hey Ness.
    Glad you found me online and led me here to this grand adventure of yours. I look forward to tagging along with you on your 1000 day journey and to reading your stories along the way.

    I like what lightheart said above… not a break from LOVE but time apart to love your self. To find the rest you need.

    Go easy -p


    “If you were to meet this magical person, this person who is your ideal…. If you were to meet them in real life… would YOU be the kind of person they would want?”

    My exact sentiments! My friends are all wondering why I am not dating or looking for a new one. And this is why. I want the next one to matter. I want to be the “ideal” for my ideal.

    I didn’t set a date or anything. But I admire your courage. 1000 days is indeed a long time.

    Good luck and I will be following your journey. As it is also mine in my own way! 🙂


    Thanks for liking me at–I loved reading your first entry about your 1000-day mission, and 15 Minutes was wonderful; you truly have writing talent. Just a personal note about spending 1000 days focusing solely on yourself without the entanglements of a love relationship: I had more than 1000 days (much more!) between relationships (after an especially catastrophic one), and it was one of the absolute best times of my life, even with the occasional loneliness. In the end, I thought long and hard before marriage #2–THAT’s how remarkable a life just for one, with no compromises, can be. I hope you make it to the 1000-day mark, because that third year will be when you really hit your stride and find you have a confidence and grace you never knew before. Go for it. Enjoy every minute of it. You deserve it.


    This is an amazing concept, I’m going to have to adopt the same philosophy myself. My days of roguish behaviour might be ending.


    I love this! Thank you so much for writing this and being an inspiration. 🙂


    Hi Ness 🙂
    Alot of people probably say this, but I feel like I’m in the same situation as you right now. Heartbroken and committed to sorting out my issues before I can commit to anyone else. The big difference between us though is that I’ve never felt like I can live without love, and that is why I’m abstaining from any kind of romantic involvement until I get to a place where I no longer feel I need it. I’m in awe of you that you can commit to 1000 days…I desperately hope it doesn’t take me that long (but that’s because I’m still a love addict..)
    xx Sparrow


    I love the way you write! Good luck to you and your pledge! I will come back to read more! 😉


    “So, if I were to be in love, it would have to be really, really worth it. It would have to be with someone… extraordinary.”

    This is how I feel, too. And I have been searching for that kind of love forever with no luck. Actively searching really does wear on you. I would consider swearing off dating, but it’d be kind of pointless considering how much trouble I have finding someone I’d like to date.


    Now here’s the thing, I am about to celebrate my 40th birthday and I have been single all my life! That isn’t to say that I haven’t loved or had my heart broken or have had issues that caused so much emotion that I felt my life was a wreck. Part of the reason for being single were some of those issues. But like you I realised I had these issues (in fact all the same ones that you mention, apart from the daddy ones- really no issues there). So I could sit around and hope for a man to come into my life who would magically whisk all those issues away and make me be who I was meant to be or I could actually start living my life.

    And so I chose to live and what an exciting, joyful, eventful, emotional life I have had. I haven’t changed the world nor will I be remembered for centuries ahead, but I have grown stronger, am more confident, can take joy in little things and life as is a great adventure that I’m having. And I hope along the way that I have touched a few lives. I thank God that I am today the woman that I always wanted to be.

    And when Prince Charming does come (and I do believe he will, but he may find that his bones creak a bit when he climbs onto his horse!), he’ll find in me a woman who isn’t just standing at his side and simpering at his manly ways but rather one that can say “come on love, I’ll give you a leg up!”


    Thanks so much for visiting The Long and Winding Road ( ~ your “like” led me here, and I look forward to following your journey. Absolutely love your writing style. Beautiful!


    I am really short of words right now.. But all the very best for this and Hope that you do get what you hope to at the end of this. I would love to read what you did on the 1001st day.. 🙂


    Thanks so much for checking me out – I’m so glad I took out the time to read your blog! I admire your spirit and courage, and I really want you to do this! I believe you will come out a much more better person. Good luck and God speed… I’ll be cheering you on all the way!


    Good luck on this 1000 days of being single! 🙂 I am sure you are already in the midst of an awesome life journey. You get to know yourself, those around you and the world you live in in ways you wouldn’t even dream of seeing were you not single. Do keep us posted. I’m so thrilled I found your blog!

    kazzisaphotographer September 7, 2012 at 11:31 PM

    Only just came across your blog after you found mine – I have a lot of reading to catch up on but I’m excited!


    Thanks for reading! This is awesome. You are awesome. You can do it!!!


    wow, this is something… Wonder how this will turn out… Good luck in this interesting experiment! Oh and thanks for liking my story in my blog! 🙂


    I love this:

    “And if prince charming comes along my path any time in the next 999 days threatening to sweep me off my feet, then tough shit, I said 1000 days and I mean 1000 days and I feel deep in me that somehow, these next few years are really going to define who I am.”

    Unrelated: Realized yesterday that I was listening to a New Zealand radio station and remembered that’s where you are. (The Coast 105.4 – a interesting mix of old and older!)


    I’m still hoping that you would be married to James after this 1000 days.


    It is the hardest things to find in yourself what needs to be tweaked or worked on. I have been married for almost 4 years and I can say I am still on that journey to better myself everyday. Good luck and I am anxious to see what you post on that March day in 2015!

    mywonderfulplanet October 7, 2012 at 12:37 AM

    Wow… It’s been a long night yesterday as I read most of your writings. I ended up getting up very tired, but I don’t regret it. Interesting how life throws in your way the things you need in that period of your life. Before I found your blog I already thought about some kind of a change which I need. I gone through some tough times, and I’m heading a lot more of them, but as you said, there are some moments when you see clearly everything you have to do, and I had that moment not long ago.
    They say insanity is when you do the same thing over and over again and you expect different result. Well I been insane for a very long time, making the same mistakes all over and over again and now I want to do things differently once in my life.
    Just as for you, love life, relationships were part of my life all the time, I needed to depend on someone, feel half of something whole to feel good. I just realised how unhealthy and unattractive that is. I realised I should not need someone who makes me happy, I should become someone that makes me happy. I don’t know exactly what my single days will include, I didn’t thought about the rules yet, but just as you, I want to fix myself as well, and I want to become stronger, and whole again. I have dreams as well, just as you, and I like to write just as you. I can relate to you in so many ways, but I feel that you are much stronger, more ambitious and talented. I know I have much things in me what makes me special, but all those things are in deep sleep, and my brain gets distracted by everything, and I lose focus all the time. You seemed to be very focused and ambitious, like when I read that how many things you have to do daily, and you barely have time to sleep I was shocked and impressed… Unfortunately I can not relate to you with that one, I don’t think I could ever be that motivated. I’m the person of excuses, but at the end of my journey, I hope this will change as well. I really am grateful to have found you, I will follow your blog from now on, it really gives me hope…


    It is my hope that if prince charming comes your way and you slip off your feet he will tell you “tough shit! you said a 1000 days and you are worth waiting for!”

    facingfactsaboutmyself October 14, 2012 at 8:52 AM

    Hi vanessa, I think I must’ve read about you in the weekend paper last weekend. I admire your courage and wish I had displayed the same wisdom after my first marriage ended. Instead almost immediately I started my current relationship. Ten years later, i fear we are paying the price for me not having that space and time to myself. While the are always pros and cons of any path we take through life, I’m pretty sure you will have no regrets.


    Wow. I’m so glad I decided to read your post. I realize this is a little old (June! We started our blogs around the same time, then, haha.), but I just wanted to say: This sounds so excellent for you. And though I don’t know you or what you’ve been through, I have to say, this sounds really great.

    I wish you the best as I journey through your archive. (And thanks for reading my blog, too!)

    -Your Faithful Author


    Reblogged this on Procrastinate With Me and commented:
    Wow, this post is great. I highly recommend having a read.


    Thank you for visiting my blog I am so glad to have “met” you. I look forward to reading more about this brave and exciting journey you are on. I love seeing what an inspiration you are to so many and how your honesty and thoughtful writing have generated an audience that will be so blessed by what you have to say, myself included.


    I’ve been browsing your blog I and I wanted to say how much I have enjoyed reading even just a few of your posts! When I started my first year of high school I decided for myself that I wasn’t going to date until I started college and then I would pray and re-evaluate where God was leading me. Now I’m at my last year of high school and getting ready to make some big decisions in my life, one of them being whether or not I will continue to stay single. I’m so glad to have the chance to read about your own journey in this!


    I ran into this one just a little earlier, and found myself wondering if you have come across it in your wrestling with love:



    Thanks for your blog, i am on my own journey through solitude and search for other people who are trying to make changes in their lives as well. Its so valuable to read your perspective and gain some on the decisions I’ve made during this journey. I’m learning how difficult it is to give up “easier” old ways of being/thinking/dealing, you make it easier to stick with.


    Awesomeness and bravery right there! I am not divorced yet, but eagerly awaiting and almost there. I have felt single probably for that long if not longer, I should count. I am so devoid of touch and love that I would probably foolishly invite the alternative to that now. But you are right, Am I ready, right and perfect for someone else…hells no. It is always nice to get a little frankness from outside points of view. 😀


    Thanks for this..
    ” If you were to meet this magical person, this person who is your ideal…. If you were to meet them in real life… would YOU be the kind of person they would want?”
    I really needed it today….


    This is so incredible! I guess to find out what you want in life and from other people you have to know yourself first 🙂


    I’m just coming out of a time like this, but it lasted for a lot longer than 1000 days and I gave up more than just guys. I invited God to gut my life and give me a new heart that really trusted him. I’ve have been and still am a student of real love. I learned that life doesn’t happen in isolation, I’m so not perfect, I need Jesus the most…but heaven comes to earth amid our relationships and to love an imperfect person is to be like God. Should a guy or a girl find someone who loves God with all their heart and is humble and crazy about them too…they should say yes to love. I failed many times through the challenge I took, but that showed me all the more why God’s love for us is so extravagant and lavish! Blessings on your daring challenge! May you grow much!


    My story is a little opposite in that I have pretty much always been single. There have been boys and dates, but nothing that ever amounted to a relationship. While I could brush it away at first, as I get older it really bothers me. I am neither unattractive nor unintelligent so it can be quite bewildering, especially when other people seem as bewildered as to why you’re single and that just makes me feel like, how the HELL does one fix this?

    Anyway what resonates with me is your honesty in saying everyone has some idea of what is ideal. And that we need to be amazing ourselves. That, I can say, is something I have always believed in. I also thought I want to be a mother one day but I want to look at my child and say THIS IS ME and I have lived.

    My consolation is that I do not feel I have reached my full potential yet and maybe all the things that didn’t work out gives me the liberty to pursue some path that one day will lead me to that right one. I do not want to fill the gap of loneliness with a random person, but the right person.

    I applaud your efforts (1000 is a looong time) and love the inspiration of your journey.


    I really hope that when you find a partner they let you still be you, I don’t believe love has to mean that you lose yourself, in fact it should be the opposite. I think this is a great plan for giving yourself the base to build on though, just one word or warning though, forget perfection, it’s the damages and repairs and imperfections that make people (and silver tables) wonderful.


      Hello! Yes I have learned a lot in the last few years. It has been the most incredible life experience, It was a bigger learning curve than I could have ever imagined. You are right though ” it’s the damages and repairs and imperfections that make people wonderful.”
      I love that so terribly much.


    I don’t have much time to read, but I made a point of reading this. You may have hooked me! I plan on starting at the beginning…looks like I have lots to catch up on.

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