So, my lack of time to post anything on here means that you, my faithful followers (both of you), get a whopper of a post tonight. Not a craft. Not a picture of me eating a piece of sushi. A major post. I'm about to knock one of the toughies off my list. I'm going to confess a secret to you.
I am terrified of marriage.
Most people would say, "I've got an easy solution. Don't get married. Problem solved." If only it were that easy.
My fear is two fold:
1. I'm terrified that I will never have the opportunity.
My whole life, I've never been a big relationships girl. It wasn't really a conscious choice, it was just how things were. I had a few boyfriends growing up, nothing serious and haven't dated much since. And I've always been okay with it. I grew up with two brothers, however, that basically had a girlfriend waiting list. As soon as the ladies found out they were back on the market, the phone calls started and the ridiculous flirting began. There was never a drought of women fawning over them. While I've never been the most relationship crazy person that I know, I've always had a strong desire to be married and one day have children.
Here's what happens when you are single in a world of people in relationships:
High School: It's no big deal. Some people date, other people don't. It doesn't really matter because all of those people hang out in a big group anyway. Your family doesn't really notice that you aren't dating anyone and neither do you.
Freshmen & Sophomore Year of College: Your family still doesn't totally notice the fact that you are becoming an adult because there is still a "1" at the beginning of your age. They start to notice the day you turn 20. You, however, are starting to become slightly more aware as your friends start dating, but you're still pretty cool with it.
Junior & Senior Year of College: It's becoming obvious that you are more of an adult and soon, you will be a real adult with a college degree. The people in your life start to notice that you are single and you are completely aware of it. More and more people you know are dating, and even better, they are starting to get engaged. This is where life gets fun.
Post College Up Until 25: Your singleness is a constant source of conversation, especially at events with extended family. Conversations start like this: "You're dating someone, right?" or "Who's the special fella in your life?". And, when you set the record straight, their response is usually "Oh." You start to hang out with more and more couples, usually married or engaged, because so many of your friends are moving into that stage in life.
After 25: You have basically entered Old Maid status as far as others are concerned. People start to ask less and less because they assume you are not in a relationship. And you have become one of a few single people hanging out with tons of couples. It's awesome.
At 28, I'm in this awkward After 25 state in life. I am totally single and I have my moments, but overall I am okay with it. But I'll be honest, I mostly feel like at this point it's slim pickings. All of the good guys seem to be taken and all of the single ones seem very. . . interesting. I've heard the usual "Why don't you try online dating?" and I've tried it. It's expensive and doesn't really seem to go very far because there are so many late 20s single women on there and approximately 7 late 20s single men. I've moved into the point where my friends are all in relationships and now I'm one of the few single people in the group. The people in my life don't know single people and neither do I.
My singleness has given me wonderful opportunities that I know a relationship would hinder. I've been able to get involved in so many things that I love. I have a job that I absolutely love and I get to invest in the lives of so many people. I am a part of an incredible church and get to participate in so many things to deepen my faith and encourage those around me. I get to serve on the leadership team for Stop Traffick Fashion and get to raise awareness about a devastating cause. I get to get paid to workout and more than that, I have fallen in love with the Jazzercise corporation, what it stands for, and the women to take part in it. These are more than simply time fillers. They are passions of mine.
I am blessed with so many opportunities, and yet I worry that these opportunities have hindered my ability to find someone to share life with. I wouldn't trade any of the opportunities that I have been given, but I can't help but think that my packed schedule has left little time for love if it was looking for me. It's hard to think that you are the one sabotaging one of your dreams. I look on Facebook and constantly see my friends posting about dates, engagements, marriages, babies, buying houses and on and on. Then I look at my page and see Jazzercise check-ins, posts about work, and things of this nature. Sometimes I just don't even want to get on because my life feels so out of sync with others in my life, and then I give in to my Facebook cravings and look anyway.
2. I'm afraid that if I ever do get the chance, I'll screw it up.
I know that 28 isn't that old (especially when college freshmen still confuse you for one of their classmates because of your baby face), but it feels like I've been stuck in this stage of life forever. I've gone to so many bridal showers, weddings, and then baby showers for those friends who are having babies. I've waited patiently, trying my hardest not to let my singleness get me down. And yet I am nowhere closer to finding love. Heck, I'm nowhere closer to finding a date.
I am just afraid that after waiting this long, if I do find someone, I'm going to mess it up somehow. I keep hearing about people from my past who get married and seem like such incredible couples. And then, next thing you know, their relationships are ending. If these people can't figure it out, how am I supposed to?
Or, what if my schedule is too crazy for that special someone and they decide they don't want to put up with it?
Or what if I put my whole heart into a relationship and the fella decides he's had enough?
Or what if there are things about me that simply are not appealing?
This list could go on and on. And I feel slightly hilarious for worrying about something I don't have. It's like you're worried about what people will think of your purchases if you win the $23 million lottery that you haven't even bought a ticket for yet. Which is ridiculous, I know, but the truth is the truth.
What does this all mean?
It means I'm human. It means I worry about things that I have no control over. It means that I need to wake up every morning, hand this issue over to the One who can actually handle it, and live my life in such a way that glorifies Him. It means that I should keep praying for the man that God might bring into my life one day because if he exists, he deserves those prayers. And it means that I am totally normal.
So, there you have it. A confession. #16 complete.