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Being single can be awesome. 7 illustrations capture that.

Valentine's Day or any other, there is a leisure sometimes in being on one's own.

What if being single isn't a status to run from but to revel in?

That's the question these seven images practically beg us to ask. Idalia Candelas sketched a series of drawings depicting a content woman in solitude, capturing the free-spiritedness that being alone can sometimes afford. There will be times we are trying out a relationship, and there will be times we are neither in a relationship nor seeking one. So why not absolutely live life to the fullest in each of those times?

By and large, people aren't that down about being single, it seems.

I asked several single people about their feelings toward Valentine's Day, and refreshingly, so many indicated that the day for them is just about love — whether that love is for a significant other, friends, family, or themselves didn't diminish the meaning of the day. It's just another opportunity to make a fuss over the people they hold dear.


Most said that looking back on Valentine's Days spent alone or with friends compared to the ones spent with a significant other, they prefer the easygoing, expectation-free single occasions.

"I prefer my Valentine's Day ALONE! SO MUCH ALONE! There are so many weird traditions and expectations embedded in the holiday when you're dating someone. Gifts, money, awkward conversations about the stage of your relationship, crappy late reservations at an average restaurant that costs too much and is loud and covered in papier mache hearts. No thanks- give me my wine and my couch and call it a day!" — Bee S.

And yet, the majority of respondents also said they still believe in love and, while content being single now, do see themselves trying for love again someday.

"I like falling in love. I love love! I like being part of a team. And I like the idea of being with someone who I love and respect and laugh with, unfettered by petty resentments, etc. But I'm also willing to wait — maybe forever? — for this to happen." — Karen R.

When asked what one word sums up being single for them, these were the results. Most were mixed, but the ones that kept recurring were "content" and "free."

And maybe that's why these illustrations touch the chord that they do in viewers. Some of us are perfectly happy being on our own and are surrounded by love. Love of the simple pleasures in life, love of silence in which to think creative or serious thoughts, love for indulging in our favorite pastimes without worry about another's happiness.

Take a gander for yourself.

All images by Idalia Candelas, used with permission.


Soak up the utter luxury of alone time these images convey. Are we appreciating the current phase of life we're in as much as we could be? If not, drop what you're doing and do something lovely for yourself. Settle into your comfiest spot with a book you've been meaning to get to or take yourself to a movie. Eat something wickedly delicious. Call a friend on the phone and giggle about something ridiculous going on in your lives.

Being good to yourself isn't corny ... it's part of respecting yourself as a worthy human, no matter your relationship status or day of the year.

Health

A child’s mental health concerns shouldn’t be publicized no matter who their parents are

Even politicians' children deserve privacy during a mental health crisis.

A child's mental health concerns shouldn't be publicized.

Editor's Note: If you are having thoughts about taking your own life, or know of anyone who is in need of help, the 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline is a United States-based suicide prevention network of over 200+ crisis centers that provides 24/7 service via a toll-free hotline with the number 9-8-8. It is available to anyone in suicidal crisis or emotional distress.


It's an unspoken rule that children of politicians should be off limits when it comes to public figure status. Kids deserve the ability to simply be kids without the media picking them apart. We saw this during Obama's presidency when people from both ends of the political spectrum come out to defend Malia and Sasha Obama's privacy and again when a reporter made a remark about Barron Trump.

This is even more important when we are talking about a child's mental health, so seeing detailed reports about Ted Cruz's 14-year-old child's private mental health crisis was offputting, to say it kindly. It feels icky for me to even put the senator's name in this article because it feels like adding to this child's exposure.

When a child is struggling with mental health concerns, the instinct should be to cocoon them in safety, not to highlight the details or speculate on the cause. Ever since the news broke about this child's mental health, social media has been abuzz, mostly attacking the parents and speculating if the child is a member of the LGBTQ community.

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Putting creative work out into the world to be evaluated and judged is nerve-wracking enough as it is. Having to market your work, especially if you're not particularly extroverted or sales-minded, is even worse.

So when you're a newly published author holding a book signing and only two of the dozens of people who RSVP'd show up, it's disheartening if not devastating. No matter how much you tell yourself "people are just busy," it feels like a rejection of you and your work.

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The legality of abortion is one of the most polarized debates in America—but it doesn't have to be.

People have big feelings about abortion, which is understandable. On one hand, you have people who feel that abortion is a fundamental women's rights issue, that our bodily autonomy is not something you can legislate, and that those who oppose abortion rights are trying to control women through oppressive legislation. On the other, you have folks who believe that a fetus is a human individual first and foremost, that no one has the right to terminate a human life, and that those who support abortion rights are heartless murderers.

Then there are those of us in the messy middle. Those who believe that life begins at conception, that abortion isn't something we'd choose—and we'd hope others wouldn't choose—under most circumstances, yet who choose to vote to keep abortion legal.

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