This summer as I was preparing for teen camp I found myself running around from one store to another getting all of the supplies, props, and decorations that I needed. I was excited for everything there is to be excited about when it comes to camp… Bonfires, goofy skits, and amazing prayers but more than anything I was excited for the late night talks and bonding time with all of the teen girls in my cabin… One of my friends told me that in the past she would have a “question/answer” night with the girls one of the camp nights where they had a chance to ask her anything they wanted. I absolutely loved the idea and decided that this year I would do the same thing. I went to a store, found a really cute container with an opening on top, bought a few colorful sticky notepads, grabbed some pens and set them in front of the mirror in the cabin and told the girls to feel free to put any questions they wanted answered in the box (anonymously) for the next night.
As the next night rolled around and we were all ready to get settled into our beds I was ecstatic to find the little container was filled to the top with questions. I gathered the girls together on two bunk beds across from each other – we got cozy with blankets and pillows around us – (and yummy late night snacks – can’t forget that ;))… I grabbed the box and prepared to answer away.
I was really looking forward to answering all of the questions about the deep, confusing, difficult to understand, and spiritual things in life that I was sure they had written down.
I took out note #1: Who is your boyfriend? Irrelevant. Let’s move on to note #2: Do you have a boyfriend? Hmm…. ok. Let’s try note #3: How many boyfriends have you had? Ok… let’s try ONE more time – note #4: Who is your boyfriend??? 🙂 My first 4 questions — all about the nonexistent boyfriend. Thankfully the questions got much better and we ended the night with a really good discussion, along with a prayer that made me laugh — and I’m sure it must have made God laugh too. We all picked different things to pray for out loud and one of the girls chose to pray for me… and when her turn came all I remember her praying for was my “mystery man” to show up sometime soon… (God- I really hope you heard THAT prayer) ;). Lets just say I had a difficult time stopping myself from laughing. My very sweet cabin girls were very concerned about me not becoming a “nun” and some of them made sure to scope out a few guys at camp my age that they thought I would look “soo cute with” 🙂 That was more than two months ago but the memory of that night with my teen girls always makes me smile..
Why I am not married already with three kids… I am not quite sure. If you read my post about the list of qualities that I look for in my husband you know that my standards are really not all that high and unreachable. And I’m pretty sure I did everything I thought I needed to in order to get “ready”. You know like passed the ultimate test of determining if you’re ready for marriage: learning to cook borsch when I was 14. Yes, that was the first and last time I did that… but that should still count, right? I even took one of those cool classes in high school where you get to take a fake baby home and take care of it for a weekend. I got an A+ on that assignment… so there ya go. I’m all ready for motherhood according to my 10th grade teacher. 😉
There are many perks that come along during the awesome period in your life when your status on facebook is not “in a relationship”…
These perks include times such as when I attend relative get-togethers and the first question my aunts ask me is “So…Anna- when are YOU getting married?” I’ve come up with some clever replies, but usually I just stick to “just wait for your wedding invitation, it’s coming soon”… I guess that doesn’t make me a complete liar…depending on what your definition of “soon” is. Then there are those times when my parents so thoughtfully invite boys over for dinner for me to meet. Last time they didn’t do so bad… except for the fact that I couldn’t speak more than two words to any of them. Communicating isn’t that important in a relationship right? Or once in a while my dad will throw out “hints” like “Hey Anna, I got a nice bonus this week…is there a wedding I should be saving it for?”… “Yes daddy, please save your money… and I’ll start praying that God overnight’s my husband to me via –well- I don’t really know what.”
And you know… watching romantic chick flicks don’t really make me too sad about being single, hanging out with my girlfriends or better yet, alone, on Valentine’s Day isn’t so terrible… but what really makes me realize that I’m single is when my car breaks down in the middle of nowhere and the first person I call is my dad. (Hmm…maybe that’s one reason those “hints” keep coming). Or if he’s lucky enough I’ll call my really awesome brother-in-law who in my eyes is a car expert. (I owe him for coming to my rescue too many times). I’m not sure why it is at this time that I feel the most single and alone, but that’s when it is. I have vowed to myself a hundred times that I would learn how to change the tires on the car, figure out what all of the weird noises cars can make actually mean, but unfortunately I never get around to any of that… plus I’ve discovered that Triple A is something worth investing into and I won’t ever have to worry about car dilemma’s again. I’m sure I’ll sign up with them…one day. 😉
Why my “prince charming” hasn’t ended up on my front porch and swept me off my feet yet? Well, that is something God only knows. But for all you really curious people I have come up with a few hypothetical conclusions why he hasn’t arrived just yet:
a) He has the same incredible talent as I do: getting totally lost on his way to find me. If that is the case I will be more than happy to provide him with my home address and a map of the fastest way to get there. If any of you know who my prince charming is… well, you know how to contact me. 😉
b) He is in the process of getting very educated so that he can become the next top surgeon in… the world. I value education highly so if this is the case he should be in no hurry to find me. There are no fire-breathing dragons that he needs to rescue me from at this moment. But he should notify me ASAP so that I can let my parents know they don’t have to worry about playing cupid for the next couple of years… and I can put away my collection of bridal magazines. 😉
c) He is doing one of those things where he is checking out 5 different girls secretly, waiting for one of them to “stand out” before he makes a move… I will be more than happy to wear a bright pink dress tomorrow… if someone tells me where to go. 🙂
d) He is already in my life and he already knows that he will (oh so luckily) marry me… but due to his wise gift of discernment he knows that I need to learn a bit more patience before I am really prepared for marriage. Well, thank you for being so considerate my dear future husband. I think I’ve learned that characteristic quite well already… you don’t have to wait no more. 😉
e) And for the REAL reason: it’s just not that time yet. 🙂
When I said that being single has its perks… I wasn’t kidding. Yes, my parents are more than ready to kindly kick me out of the house tomorrow morning if the right guy happens to come along, but thankfully, they have not set a deadline for me to meet by when that must happen exactly (whew!) They must still love me 😉
As for singleness being a gift… well – I don’t think being single forever when you don’t want to be is a gift – after all, God wants to grant us the desires of our hearts – not leave us living alone if that is not what we believe we are called to do. But I 100% believe that the period of singleness in any persons life is a gift – and a phenomenal opportunity to spend the time wisely to work on your character, to prepare yourself to be a godly wife/husband and mother/father, to work on getting further in your education, career, or work so that you don’t have to worry about it in future, to use your gifts and talents to serve in the church, or explore the world if you want to (before the 5 kids come along and it becomes much more difficult).
Many times when I was just 17 and 18 – I really thought I had my life all figured out and I was so “ready” to get married in my own eyes but now I know that I was far from ready and only now after doing a lot of “growing” and figuring myself out I can realistically say that I am. According to myself of course – God only knows how really ready I am. But I am grateful that I have spent these years of my life falling more in love with Jesus, figuring out what I want to do with my life, finding my place of where to serve in the church and working on my character. Sure, there are lonely nights someday… especially after car breakdowns… or a potential “prince charming” in my eyes ends up being…just a frog, at the end I’m happy knowing that I am exactly where I need to be in life.
Apparently having a husband and three kids right now was not God’s divine plan for my life, although at 16 when I had the rest of my life all figured out I thought it would be. I know the “mystery man” who my teen girls are praying for is still out there somewhere…and boy am I glad to meet him… whenever that may be. Till then… no kissing frogs! 😉
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