Many books have been written for married couples to guide them, offer them timeless advice and cheer them on in their union; but the same is not common for single people. In a society that clearly sees singleness as an anomaly, this should not come as a surprise. Adefunke Adeyemi has decided to change the narrative and champion a movement that celebrates singularity.
In this book, she uses her life’s trajectory to drive home relevant points and give solid advice to singles, divorced, married, separated or any other phase. Singleness is a marathon, not a sprint. It can also be a state of mind, not merely a status. Hence, the first important thing to note in that journey is to be yourself completely and unapologetically. Trying to be someone you are not will only dim your glow. Adefunke says, ‘If you do not feel good about yourself or are not pleased with who you have become, you need to take a journey back to yourself and focus on what is really important- You!’ This, in a way, suggests that if you are not pleased with who you are as a single person, a relationship or marriage will fix it. The root cause of that is you and so you have to fix ‘you’ first. This is an integral part of being fully self-aware: knowing your shortcomings or weaknesses and working to improve on them without looking to place the blame at anyone’s feet.
You can also infer from Singular that completeness is not mutually exclusive to marriage. When two are joined together to become one, they exude the idea of being complete in their unison. They become the better half of each other, the raison d’etre of each other. Singular affirms that you can be one with yourself and complete as a single person with or without another. But there is a catch; ‘This is not a call to remain forever single or unnecessarily defiant to committed relationships, but rather a call to be fulfilled and complete even while single so that you can reap the true bounty and pleasure of loving and fulfilling relationships when they eventually happen for you…’ This is the best way to phrase the life that most singles want to live before even conceiving the thoughts of marriage. A fulfilled and complete life of learning, unlearning and relearning. Such wholesome level of self-awareness and self-assuredness make for great qualities in a partner.
Singular also lays emphasis on dreaming with your eyes wide open as a single. But it is not enough to dream because ‘if you simply dream without a clear course of action, it will remain just that: a dream.’ Adeyemi is obviously a woman with clear goals and she tables her thoughts on how to emulate this quality using instances in her life and career choices. She is big on articulating one’s dreams, tying this dream to a location or timeline and going the extra mile to actualize it. As a single woman, the opportunity to maximise your potential is boundless, therefore, you have to make it all count while not forgetting to enjoy every moment of your existence. The lawyer turned aviation expert also touches on the importance of being financially independent as a single. Money remains a key driver for meeting different obligations and pursuing relevant passions and interests. And because money solves a lot of issues in life, it is important to cultivate a healthy relationship with it as a single.
Adefunke Adeyemi succeeds in stating the obvious in this book. She did not stop there but lends her perspective to reiterate the key issues our society is quick to discard. She also attempts to juxtapose how intimacy, sex fit into the context of singularity.
If you find yourself under duress or pressure from nosy African aunties and relatives who present marriage as the ultimate fulfilment, the book Singular is the antidote you need. I may not have unravelled some esoteric secrets from this book but the subtle reminder to keep living my best life – singular or plural makes it an invaluable resource.