In my mid-ish twenties, I found myself the fifteenth wheel once. Everyone’s boyfriend/fiance/husband was paying after our meal and I was the only girl holding out her credit card. (I prided myself in that.) But I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t longing to be in a relationship. One by one all my friends had started dating, got engaged, got married, bought houses. Conversation topics went from being about boys to wedding planning to mortgages. And then to ultrasounds and baby room preparations. Yet I was still solo.
There were guys interested in me, but I didn’t feel the same way. Can’t blame me. And there were guys I was interested in, but they didn’t feel the same way. Can’t blame them. Then there were a few viable prospective suitors…guys whose intentions seemed relationship oriented and in whom I was feeling hopeful about. These did a number on my heart. Though, since I never “officially” dated any of them, I didn’t lose what I never had in the first place. (And by “officially” I mean actually having boyfriend/girlfriend status. I know nowadays “official” means you’ve posted a picture of the both of you on Facebook.)
Let’s see…there was a guy I met at an out of town wedding. He contacted me via my old blog. We hit it off. Talked a lot. He sent me a webcam for Christmas….but eventually told me something to the effect of :
“I feel at home with you. You’ll always be special to me…but not “special” like we’ll be in a dating relationship one day.”
Followed, a couple years later, by a guy who ended up letting me know that :
“I enjoy getting to know you. You’re a great girl. But I discovered I actually want to pursue your friend.”
At this point…I had a major “dark night of the soul”. I can’t remember who coined the term…but it was hugely appropriate. Where was I going wrong? Is it just me? Am I too ____ or not ____ enough? God You know the desire of my heart…when will You answer? And all night I wrestled with God. I was sad. My heart felt broken.
The next morning, I flew to Vancouver for another friend’s wedding. (Seriously, I was averaging seven to eight weddings a year…for seven years straight.) At the banquet, while whistfully watching couples sway during a slow dance, a tall man with a deep voice asked me to dance with him. Oh! Well…sure! We didn’t exchange numbers but he found me on Friendster (remember that?) and then we started chatting. He flew out to visit once. Mailed me a scarf for Christmas. But in the end it came down to something I interpretted as :
“I really like you, but not enough to try a long distance relationship.”
God, like, WHAT GIVES???
Fact is, if they’re just not that into you, they’re just not that into you. It’s okay. Better to find out sooner rather than later right? I remember a girl friend saying, “God’s tenderizing your heart.” I wanted to harden it. Harden so it can’t feel anymore. But I knew that wasn’t the right response. Thinking back to my previously smashed idols, I wondered if wanting to be in a relationship was also an idol…and maybe I needed to give it up as well. I felt God wasn’t asking me to resolve to never be in a relationship, but He was asking “Am I enough?” And I knew He needed to be. Okay fine. But God, if you’re going to keep me single then I ask for GREAT single girl relationships and fulfilling ministry in my life. And He answered that prayer.
A few years later, I met Skywalker…but that’s a story for another time.