I used to laugh at people who, once they got home from work, had to be practically dragged out of their homes until they had to go back to work the next morning. I used to think of them as little old men and women, sitting in front of the television, cooking and puttering about in their homes. Now I'm one of them. By the time I get home from work, I'm too pooped out to do anything, unless it's to go swimming at the pool here at my apartment. But we don't even get to that much as the pool keeps getting closed. It seems other residents don't want to follow the pool rules, so management locks the pool gates closed.
Jamie is being babysat by the sons of a friend of mine from church. Despite the fact that they're 16, they insist on calling me "ma'am" and "Ms. Hacker." I can feel my hair turning blue and my cute, sassy 4" heels turning into Hush Puppies every time they open their mouths. If they talk to me for more than three minutes, I can feel my spine curving into an arthritic hunch and my hands curling into claws.
In 4 months and 10 days, I'll be 30. I know, in my mind, that 30 is not anywhere close to being old. But there are old stereotypes that like to stick in your brain, and crawl out your ears and whisper to you in the middle of the night when you're lying awake thinking about the fact that you're fast approaching 30: "spinster" is the first word that immediately comes to mind. Then there's the quaint term "all dried up." There's also the old saying that you're more likely to get struck by lightning than you are to get married over the age of 30. Then there's the fact that I would have thought I would have been married and had another child by the time I was the "big 3-0". I, who used to swear I would never have children, not only have Jamie, but long for more. That's why we got Ziggy when we did - because puppies are cheaper (and a whole lot less trouble to get! LOL) than babies!
But things haven't worked out that way. I keep telling myself that God does things in his own time, but every patience test God has given me, I've failed. I keep trying, and keep praying for patience (and some other thing(s), too), but at what point are you supposed to throw in the towel and say "Okay, obviously God doesn't mean for me to have/be such-and-such", or are you supposed to keep on praying? Someone with some theological chops, answer me please.
In the mean time, I keep repeating to myself Psalm 40:1, Habbakuk 2:3, Romans 8:25 - and a newly discovered personal fave, Lamentations 3:25 "The LORD is wonderfully good to those who wait for him and seek him" (NLT). And I also keep thinking about a paraphrase from Song of Solomon, about the heart unready to be wakened. Maybe I'm having to wait because all isn't ready yet. Maybe some other things have to happen first before I can truly appreciate what I find, and before what I seek can be freely given. Maybe it's like Ann's cooking - not only do you have to have the salt and the curry, but you have to add them together at the right time, otherwise it just won't taste right. So please pray for me to have patience, and not to despair while I 'm waiting for God's plan for me to be revealed.
06/13/06 Addendum to post:
I was going to post this as a comment, but it got too long. So I'll just add it as an addendum instead.
Thanks for the words of encouragement. Like I said on Ann's blog, the main thing that has me freaked out is something I read in the Old Testament about "don't defile yourself with an unclean/unpure woman." Well, according to the OT, I fit the definition because I had Jamie out of wedlock.
I know God has forgiven me, but would a Christian man, in his heart-of-hearts, ever be able to look at me as a potential partner? Would he ever be able to look at me and see the woman I've become instead of the mistakes I've made? Would he see that I have so much love to give I'm about bursting with it? Would he see that if this is the person God has chosen me to be with, I would do everything in my power to make him happy and to help him? Would he see Jamie as a child so eager to be a man's son that he, too, cries for it at night? Or would he just see a reminder that I'm human and made some bad decisions? Don't get me wrong, I wouldn't trade my boy for anything in the world. He literally is the best "mistake" I ever made, I cannot imagine my life without him. I love Jamie so much it's scary! That's part of (but not the whole) reason why I feel so much pressure right now about finding the person God has in mind for me.
When Jamie was little, he used to ask me why he didn't have a daddy like his other friends. This question feels like a dagger in the heart, let me tell you! I told him that any man can be a father, it's simply a matter of nature. But, I said, it takes a very very special man to be a daddy. "And you're such a special, wonderful little boy, that I have to find a special, wonderful man to be your daddy." When he was little, this answer satisfied him. But now, it isn't enough. For Christmas last year, he told me the only present he wanted was a daddy. And I had to tell him I hadn't found him one yet. So, he told me "Hurry up, Mommy. I'm growing up fast!" And at night, when he says his prayers and he thinks I'm not listening, he prays that his mommy finds him a daddy really soon. And my heart breaks just hearing it, because I know that I'm not enough for him. We both feel the absence greatly.
So the question remains: Can a Christian man ever look at me and see who I am? Can he see Jamie as the wonderful, intelligent, precocious little boy that he is? Would he even want to try get to know the real me? Would he want to get to know Jamie? Yes, I know there are many many many Christians who are now part of loving marriages & partnerships who did not come to the marriage bed "pure." But most of those didn't have a living, breathing reminder in the house of those past relationships. And even if some Christian man did see me for who I am, would his family be able to accept me? Or am I forever relegated to the status of "just a friend"?
I know, God has someone out there he has chosen for me; but it's very hard for me to wait. As I said, patience is something I pray for on a daily basis! And we all know (the Bible is full of examples) that we don't always listen when God tells us to do something - and we also don't listen when God tells us NOT to do something. But seeing as how a relationship takes two to tango, I guess I'll just have to wait (and pray, and pray, and pray!)