Never What I Expect

It’s been quiet around here. I know. Well, let’s just say I’ve been distracted. Yes, distracted by a boy. Haha! What excitement, right?! But it feels different. Much more different than I expected dating to feel. Dating post-divorce is never what one would expect. Yes it’s fun. And it feels SO good to be wanted. SO good. It’s so different from the 10-year marriage that, in hindsight, seems to have been “forced” on my husband who never wanted to marry that young anyways. This time, someone wants me and no one and no standard is forcing him to. HE wants it. It’s no longer one-sided.

And yet, my mind is racing, searching for what is the right thing for me. That’s the last thing I thought would ever be on my mind when I was finally dating again. It’s supposed to be daily butterflies and daydreaming, right?
And yet, there’s doubts and fears that what I’m doing and who I’m kissing may be affecting my destiny. Does it fit with the perfect “comeback” story I had in my image-controlling mind? Is it the karma-cause of my slow going finances for the first time since my husband left me; the cause of my distance from friends who I feel might not approve of this imperfect guy yet makes me laugh and feel wanted? Is this a blessing or a curse? Is God punishing me for exploring this? Does He even want me to date? How do I even do this “adult dating” thing when all I hear in my head is my family’s hope for a rich man or my youth pastor’s spit-raging sermon ringing loudly in my head, “Don’t date! Don’t kiss! Don’t date! Don’t kiss!”

What do I do with this now? What does the church girl, worship leader, abandoned wife do with this? This is exhausting. Do I just give in to single life to avoid all the questions, fears, and imperfections?

For some reason, life for me has always had no meaning without a mate. And when I’m finally enjoying the company of someone who shows any remote desire for me, I’m starting to find, there’s more to me than a mate. There could possibly be meaning in just me alone. I’m not sure what it is yet, but it’s strange to think for the first time in my life that life as a single person isn’t exactly the hell I always judged it to be. And maybe dating is showing me that.

Do I miss the ex? Do I miss being a wife? Do I miss belonging to someone, watching the kids play outside of our “white picket fence” home while we waited for daddy to come home from work? Yes. Yes I do. But not as deeply as I did six months ago. I never thought I’d reach this point of contentment. And yet here I am. Open to singleness. Who am I?!!

Yes, I like dating. I like dating him. But the thought of “just me” isn’t quite as scary anymore. At least for now it isn’t. For several years maybe, until I know without a shadow of a doubt that who I’m dating will make me happy for the rest of my life. And no, not the ‘cliche happy’ that every little college girl dreams of before that cute boy finally gets down on one knee. The realistic happy – the happy that still carries love, joy and true commitment past the sad days, the ugly days and the “nothingness” days of life and marriage.

I can’t say that this fun dating thing has helped me find myself yet. As much as I thought it would, to be honest, I’m more lost than I’ve ever been. I don’t know where my life goes from here. I don’t know where I’ll end up. I actually don’t know where I belong. I was the church girl who was supposed to be married for a lifetime, singing on stage, loving on the members of her church community, guiding other young women who dreamed the same dreams I dreamed at one point in my life. But someone’s choice decided to turn that all around for me. And now, I have to find my new destiny -or perhaps the one God had for me all along. And I have a feeling it looks very different from what was in my head the first twenty years of my life.

Does that destiny include this guy who makes my heart flutter at the moment? I have no idea. All I know is, I don’t really ever know what my future looks like. And somehow, I’m having to let go of what I thought my dreams were and I have to open the door to what will actually be. Because in the end, I have no control. I never did. None.