A couple weeks ago, I talked about how I’d like to start posting monthly writing samples. Blogging has always been practice of the craft for me and this week I’m stretching out a little. This is the start of what may be a blog series or may be a larger project. I’m not sure where this is headed, but I’m sharing it anyway. Enjoy!
I knew pretty early on that I did not want to get married right out of college.
During jr. high youth group one night, they split the guys off from the girls and panel of women talked with us about purity. As part of the introduction, they each shared how they had met their husbands.
“We met in our biology class in college.”
“He lived on the floor below me in our dorm.”
“We were introduced the first day of our freshman year.”
I distinctly remember thinking, that is a boring love story. I want to meet someone in a cool way. After school. After backpacking through Europe.”
Backpacking through Europe was the epitome of adulthood in my thirteen year old mind. I had just read Maureen Johnson’s 13 Little Blue Envelopes and knew that was the goal after college. NOT getting married. I wanted to live a little first.
And that was that. Until I encountered the horror of a freshman girl’s dormitory.
I never had questioned my dating status, let along my marital status until my first night at college when the question was thrown out:
“Do any of you think you’ve met your husband here yet?”
I am not. Kidding. This was the first night.
And from there it just felt like so many women were in a scramble to find that perfect fit somewhere on campus. For the most part, it wasn’t a race. I have plenty of friends who found their person in a normal amount of care and time and their wedding celebrations were such a pleasure to be a part of.
But there were some couples that were slightly more concerning. Some of them resulted in rushed marriages and even more rushed divorces.
Looking around in the aftermath of those years, it’s been interesting to observe longings that have surfaced in my life as well as in the lives of my friends through the first years of marriage into the early parenting stage from some of them.
I never thought I would get to 24 and be one of my only friends left rowing in the single boat. And I’d be lying if there weren’t moments I look around and wonder if I missed something—took a wrong turn or acted on introvert impulse when I shouldn’t have.
But I’ve been here long enough to know that the grass just isn’t going to be as green as it is on Fixer Upper. I’m thankful for that.
Honestly, I’m still trying to get back to Europe, let alone get down the aisle.
So much “spiritual” reading I did outside of the Bible was concerned with being a good girlfriend, or wife, or even mother. But I’m not using that info. Not really. I’ve found in this season a yearning to just learn how to be a person.
As part of this writing experiment, I’m trying to find out how to wring this season dry. I made it through bible college without the husband and baby I was promised with my diploma and I want to live into that well.
I’ve felt for a while that the church in general is not sure what to do with a woman in her mid-twenties who is unwed without prospects…Maybe not the church in general. Maybe it’s the church in West Michigan.
And as much as I want to be comfortable in that, I feel like I’m kind of alone here.
So I write this for you. To let you know you’re not alone…. or maybe just to confirm if I am. So in these posts, I’ll be unpacking some observations and throw out some thoughts.
I don’t want to spend this season waiting for what is next. What is here is next. And I’m owning it—The life of a Bible College Spinster.