Calm down now it’s PG I promise 😉
One thing that people ask me with much trepidation and in a very shy and roundabout way, is: now that I am single again, do I still have the same values regarding no sex till marriage.
So weird and fun and crazy and lonely and exhilarating all at the same time!!
Never in a million years did I imagine myself to be here again. I mean I was married at 19- waaaaay too young (for when my kids oneday read this!!;) pregnant at 20 and a mama at 21. Carazeee!! I mean seriously who does that!??!
Marriage…check. Perfect lil family…check. Disaster a few months before my 30th birthday…check.
I found myself achingly alone cuz I actually loved being married!! And OHMYWORD I remember crying and thinking that no guy would ever want me and I will die all alone. Cue- “All By Myself” Celine Dion rendition 😉
Melodramatic you say?
Maybe just a tad;)
But I am here in this present situation and there ain’t nothin’ I can do to change that so I’ve gotta ride the wave I now find myself on.
Let me set my present state scenario for you…
I’m out on a date…fancy shmancy… OHHHHH so fun!!!! (I love going on dates!!!!!!)
It’s all small talk and flirting…lil eyelash bat here, his casual muscle flex there… And it gets to the part where I can’t stall any longer and he asks, “So I mean what else do you do with your spare time?”
Hmmmm…Spare time you ask??? ha!
“Weeeeeelllll… I am actually ummm like a…ummmm…single…mom…well ummm like a divorced… ummm single mom of…ummmm…thshhhreaahhheee..(clears throat)…(confidence therefore volume increased out of sheer nervousness and hilarity)… I’M A DIVORCED SINGLE MOM OF THREE KIDS!!! OH AND BY THE WAY I’M ONNA THOSE ABSOLUTE WEIRDOS THAT DOESN”T SLEEP WITH A GUY TILL SHE’S MARRIED.”
Cue- Handsome, Brilliant potential Prince Charming instantly turning an albino shade of pale, raising hand and signaling waiter and nearly screaming in panic, “Check Please!!!!!!!”
Okay okay so it’s not thaaaaat bad but it is pretty hilarious!!!
Actually, in all honesty, I am SOOO glad God didn’t answer my prayers after my husband left. I prayed with the fiercest most faith filled determination for a new prince charming to walk into my world a month nay weeks nay days after my husband left. I prayed he would scoop me up and want me, that he would sweep the pieces of me that lay shattered on the floor, put me back together again and carry me off into the golden sunset…
Ohhhhhh man am I glad God was like, “Babygirl. Just chill out. I got you covered.”
I am so glad He ignored my prayers and just smiled;) I mean I am not always diggin’ on His timing that is FORSURE but for the most part He seems to have it all under control;)
I am glad and relieved He didn’t answer my prayers for more reasons than I can recount.
I would never have been forced to learn the triumph that could only be discovered through walking through the agony of lonely. I was forced to search deep within myself and deep within my faith and find B.R.A.V.E. I have now found me…the true me…the real me…the scarred me…the free me…the new me.
I am now in a place where I don’t need a man. I got this new ride down. It’s not about need. I don’t think it was ever supposed to be.
It’s about want.
Do I need a man?? No. (If I was still in this mindset, I wouldn’t be able to look after and provide for my kids and I would be scrambling as what I was dependent on was ripped out from underneath me.)
Do I want a man?? Ummmmm very much Y.E.S.
I would also never have had the experiences that this wonderful world of dating has brought;) And now alongside this journey, I have now been given the opportunity to really think, take my time and figure out and discover what I want this next time around, what type of man I wanna spend the rest of my life with.
A friend of mine told me to watch this Tyler Perry Madea act and it struck a chord.
Although the whole thing is hilarious and full of some real gold nuggets of truth, for this particular blog post note from 5.43 to 9.42.
Take a look:
Ahhhh gotta love Madea!!! 😉
Love what ‘she’ says in regards to seasons and lifetime expectations. I have thought of this in regards to friendships (another post another time) and in regards to dating. I think it’s about realising if that person is in your life for a season or for a lifetime and being honest with yourself and with them about that.
And I LOVE what Madea said about learning to be A.L.O.N.E. “Stop praying about it, Shut up and wait.” Hahaha love this!!! And trust me this is frikkin hard!!!! Cuz alone is L.O.N.E.L.Y.!!! And it is so very tempting after having walked through divorce, to get into a relationship with the first person that comes across your path because you are lonely and used to being in a marriage, in a partnership. Trust me it is tempting!!!
And again I quote Madea, “Go work on you. That’s what that time is for to get yo’self together.” And we reply, but wait!? They the ones who did wrong, left us, destroyed our marriage, left our children!! Why I gotta work on myself!? Ohhhhhhh I have found sooooo much to work on. SO MUCH. And I wanna spend my days fine-tuning this character of mine and bettering myself for my forever man wherever he is and whenever that season begins. There is sooooo much to be said about the person who can walk straight into the eye of lonely and conquer it only through finding peace with actually being alone. It forges in one a security and empowerment otherwise undiscovered. It’s now not based out of need but rather comes from God given desire.
(Now to my friends who just so happened to have found their “Lenny” straight after, you are AMAZE and I’m just totally jealous!!! 😉 )
There are some that have come across my path that have been a beautiful lil season and I am so grateful for a date or two or more with them. They weren’t meant to be forever and that’s ok. They were a beautiful chapter in my story and I am grateful. I know some people don’t believe in dating (I was once one of those- read the book, bought the t-shirt haha!!) But honestly- I think it is healthy and normal and good!!! I think it is an extremely unhealthy attitude we can have when we think that if we like someone or go on one date with them or even kiss them!? SHOCK HORROR;) then we must know from the get go that we are going to marry them.
Ummm isn’t that what the true intention of dating is supposed to be about? Getting to know someone, spending a bit of time to see if you could possibly build a life together?? I would much rather spend time before, seeing if that is the man I want to spend the rest of my life with, as opposed to realising after, that I married someone whose character I really didn’t know all that well or who I didn’t spend enough time discovering what ‘we’ would look like.
I remember my Papa telling me when I was 14, “Honey, you are going to start meeting boys and dating soon and it’s good and you need to go out and enjoy being taken out and see what kind of qualities you desire in your future husband.” I remember saying to him, “No ways, Papa!!! I won’t go on one single date or kiss one single boy unless I know that he is the man I am going to marry!!” Oh I was so full of self righteous knowing- O.M.G. my poor Papa;) Whilst I am soooo happy that I lived by a standard of purity , and those values have carried over into this crazy season of being single again, now as a 30 something, I now don’t need to limit myself to strictly group dating now haha;) I’m a big girl now and can go on real live grown up dates ALL BY MYSELF!!!:) No more segregation on the youth group bus trips for me!!! Hahaha (I LOVE you Glenn & Bonni!!!!)
Also, as I am no longer married, some of my bestest closest friends are single guys and we hang out. Alone!!!!! (OMG Re O.M.G.) haha I think it is incredibly healthy as a single to have opposite gender friends. Very healthy!!
I mean if I can’t practice self control by this age in life, I’ve got some major issues that only some bootcamp reform kick your ass eating bark and leaves kinda thing can maybe fix!!??
(I will SHAMEFULLY admit though that I occasionally have Z.E.R.O. self control when it comes to chocolate. I sometimes eat the entire (350g) block in one sitting. EEEEEEKKK I know, I know it’s baaaaaad!!!
I am holding my head in shame as I type…
The cure to misuse is not no use, it’s right use.
I’m not talking bout serial dating and I’m not talkin bout nunnery.
I’m talking about learning what healthy balance is.
If we are too afraid of messing up whatever that may be to you, isn’t learning and implementing proper use of that thing the way to instil maturity and discipline and self control and health?
I mean I am a single woman in my 30’s who had sex on tap for 10 years and although it ain’t easy and it certainly ain’t healthy!! Like SOOOOOOO unhealthy!!!!!! (Sorry if my honesty makes ya a tad bit uncomfortable ;0 😉 I by my own choice, practice self control because my conviction is personal to me and there is a personal value and a personal reason behind it. It’s my conviction, not a set of legalistic rules and regulations. If it isn’t a conviction to me, I won’t live by it anymore. I want my faith to be real to me. Not a set of legalistic rules and regulations.
(But it certainly ain’t healthy. Like legit. I’m just saying’;) God and I have an agreement and He has a deadline;) hahahahahaha)
Now, that is not to say that feelings should always determine convictions, cause if that were true ohmyword I would have ABSOLUTELY committed a VERY serious criminal felony in reaction to the feelings of betrayal and theft I experienced!! ;0 😉
Feelings come and go forsure. Convictions hold steadfast in the fickle face of feelings. Convictions anchor us in the s*#t storms of life.
And it’s these s*#t storms that shape and define us. Life’s storms are both agonisingly and tragically stunning.
Scars Like Medals.
My monkeys will grow up and make their own decisions regarding many things, but I want to show them the why behind the values that I will teach them. My Creator doesn’t give me no’s because He is a legalistic dictator. He always provides certain boundaries as options for us because He created us and therefore knows what the absolute best for us can be. It’s completely up to us how we wanna walk it out.
I hate the system of religion. It suffocates. It takes optional ways of living and makes them legalistic laws. See the purity of His Word brings freedom and life. Not an excuse for licentiousness but liberty to choose what could be absolute best for us which will always bring us into fullness of life and fullness of true freedom.
There are choices in life we can make that affect us. These are decisions we have to work out for ourself. Decisions that we have to work out in both the brokeness and beauty of our humanity. It’s up to us to work out what the absolute best for us is and how we decide to live that out.
Then, there are choices in life that affect others. These I see as black and white. If your actions are going to inflict harm and/or pain and agony upon someone else, then your choice is clear:
To me, marriage is supposed to be for life. Clearly it doesn’t always work out like that. But the true purity and intention of marriage is that it does. Sooooo, this NEXT time where I will don threeeeee pretty pretty dresses;) – I want ‘For Keeps’. I want to build towards ‘For Life’. I want old and grey and wrinkled, sittin on the front porch swing with our children and our grand babies and great grand babies all around us. Siiiiiiiigh. What a stunning thing it was intended to be.
#hurryupalreadylenny 😉 😉
Soooo I am gonna need to go on a date to two or three or four;) and enjoy getting to know someone to see if it is just meant to be for one or two dates, for a season or if it is meant to be for a lifetime.
Plus getting all dressed up and going out on a date is sooo much fun!!! I mean really fun 😉
My counsellor said to me as I was relearning some things and figuring out how I see things- ‘Re, whatever your boundaries are and those are for you to decide, as long as a man doesn’t push you past them, then you just have to be free and go with your gut and convictions and see what it might bring Annnnnd have F.U.N.”
Growing up with the mindset I previously had, I thought that I had to sit on my couch head down, legs firmly crossed (haha), lips pursed waiting for Jesus Christ Prince Charming to come galloping up to my front door, kick the door in, and exclaim and declare His undying love and devotion to me and sweep me off of my feet!!! Haha it just don’t happen quite like that I’m afraid!!
I mean let’s get real people!!!! Life is messy and crazy and complicated and complex and beautiful and tragic and stunning and unpredictable and unscripted and it just ain’t no Disney fairytale!!! Ya gotta get out in the world and meet new people, travel, make friends, go on dates!! And the crazy thing is, NONE of these mean you have to compromise your values (whatever those values are for you).
I have met the most amazing people along this journey and have had the privilege of some amazing experiences that this crazy and wonderful dating adventure has given me, not to mention I now have some very very very funny stories!!!
(Oh and to any guy I may have possibly been with on a date or two or three or four;) Don’t worry- I won’t completely Taylor Swift your ass and expose you, and although you quite possibly will feature in a song (stay tuned music is comin), I promise no one will know it’s you!! Well for the most part!! 😉 😉
Through dating, I have seen qualities in others that I desire in my forever man and some I desire not so much!! But not one single one of them has cost me my convictions. See that’s the thing about convictions- they are deep within you no matter what life throws at you, no matter what you go through. Not a set of rules and regulations but rather a set of boundaries that crazy as it sounds, brings you more freedom and joy.
For me, the more freedom I have found in my walk with my Creator, the more it has drawn me to want to please him. It’s a crazy economy.
Ohh and besides!! If God had answered my prayers straight away then I would never have discovered the true love of my life…
I mean SERIOUSLY!???!! Just look…I mean…Just…Wow. Well done, God, WELL DONE.
Imagine if he ever saw this!?? He would legit think I’m a crazy person!!!! hahahaha
I’m just focused, Lenny Baby, just focused!!!!! 😉