She asked him, “Are you the one?”
And he answered, “Can I be?”
He knelt down on one knee, pulled out a small, navy blue velvet box and flicked it open. It was a ring with a sparkling gem on it.
I do not want to disturb your musings and the quick flutter of butterflies in your stomach but let me tell you a disclaimer. I am still single and the scene above is just a piece of my vivid daydreaming of how a cute engagement is like for me. Sunsets, yellow tulips, family and friends and the man of my prayers — whose heart will not flutter at these things?
But why am I writing about this today? See, when I woke up today, the first thought that came to me is I want to get married. You would know that I have trouble shaking this off since I am now sitting aimlessly in our terrace, writing about these things while the clouds pass by against the purplish blue sky. Just last night, before I drifted to sleep, I was thinking of wanting to die. How ironic, isn’t it? This may seem trivial and petty for some but I have my reasons to be bothered by it today. Let me explain to you, both the amusing and fearful reasons.
I have first dreamed of getting married and starting my own family about 5 years ago, when I was 21 years old. When I realized this desire in my heart, I was excited. But as I went on with life, I started to despise this desire in my heart as I have entangled myself in an unrequited love story with a man whom I thought was my future husband. This went on for 4 years before I finally ended up my agonizing heart situation on New Year’s eve of January 2017. I was left with my heart badly broken and I don’t even know how to start mending. What I knew then is that I made a pact with God and myself that all the crying will be over; I will move on, get better and heal.
I clung onto God dearly during this healing process. I have no capability to heal on my own so I rested in God during this dark and clumsy process. I enjoyed it so much that one morning of March, I made a bold declaration to God, saying, “Lord, I am good if it is only You and me now. I think I can be happy as a single for as long You would want me to.” Surely, this bold statement was being tested when for the second time again, I felt a special flutter in my heart. It is both joyful and scary at the same time. I am still processing these thoughts and emotions and asking God about them. So, I always kept my heart in check. I know that God has allowed this man to make me feel this way to remind me that no matter how hard and calloused my heart has become, it is still the same heart capable of holding in it a special kind of love. I remember the feeling of being wanted and loved.
I also vividly remember one heart-to-heart conversation I had with my parents 2 years ago, when I was about 24 years old. They were asking me on when I will introduce to them my boyfriend. The funny thing about this is that I did not have someone in my life at that time to call as my boyfriend! Silly, isn’t it? What made it even funnier is the fact that my parents were wary that I might just be hiding him and keeping our relationship in secret. I assured my parents that when that day comes, they will be the first ones to know him. I even added that they will have the honor of knowing him and approving of him before I even realize that he is pursuing me! Such was my response to them but they were not convinced and told me, “You may get married at 26 years old.”
I have kept these words in my heart. I know for a fact that these authorities were given by God to me to guide me through His plans and purposes. I have kept these words, ingrained them deeply in my heart, as if it is God directly speaking them to me, prophesying over my life. I knew it would be true.
Surely, there are so many times when I gave up on this dream. That is one thing about the things we hope for, we have to continue believing they will arrive eventhough the slightest signs of them have vanished from our sight.
Another funny thing happened to me just this March that I quaintly recall now as I write. I am living in a small apartment in Manila with one girl officemate who also happened to be one of the women that I mentor and disciple. We were discussing openly in our room one night after office shift about our life plans and anything under the sun (have you heard about girl-talks?). She was telling me that she is planning to move for good to her province soon. As her manager and more importantly, as her discipler, I told her that I got no problems with that as long as she prayed about it. Then, her answer surprised me more than anything else and left me caught off guard.
“Ma’am Kat, call me up for your wedding, okay? I want to be there.”
I was left there staring at her blankly, my mouth left open for a suppressed laugh. Then I chuckled, with sarcasm, I admit. “Wedding? It is not yet on my mind! I don’t even have a boyfriend!” I was laughing so hard but she said, “He is coming soon.” She seemed more excited than me.
I stopped right there and thought, “Yeah, I can feel it too. I can feel him near me now. I have these hopes that it will happen sooner. Maybe next year?” We ended up our chat by agreeing that all these things will happen when God says it is time. So I slept peacefully.
One last anecdote I am sharing is an encounter I had with my discipler. She is a 30-year old woman who is finally getting married to her long-time boyfriend next year. We were having our discipleship meeting one Sunday afternoon in March 2017 and we drifted off to the topic of her upcoming wedding. One of the things she said that stuck with me until now is when she said that she is feeling unusual about getting married now. It is not because she does not want to (they have waited so long to get her parents’ blessing for the wedding) but because she is missing her single days, even now. She advised us to enjoy all our days as single women because it is the time we have for ourselves to become a better person, learn things, travel places etc. Marriage is not about feelings only but also about responsibility. Her perspective about getting married has given new light to my desire.
So I finally got here to the last part of my article. After discussing all those short stories that I pondered upon today just because of that one thought this morning, I resolved 2 things:
One, I should be ready.
Not that marriage is my ultimate goal in life but because God wants me to be more of the woman He has created me to be. As I told my friends, as women, our greatest issue and role is not in the “looking out” for a partner in life but more in the “becoming“. I have all these single days ahead of me to become a more loving person. I have many single days to learn new things, go to places, and to disciple. I have more days to welcome my future husband by writing him poems and letters now. I have more days to pray about and for him. I have more days to be fully alive, even without him in the picture yet. I want to be worthy of the responsibility of holding his heart and enjoy the privilege of having my heart held by him.
Two, I am saving up all my excitement as I anticipate that day.
Not because I am turning 26 this 2017 but because I want to live out my single days full of life, love and passion. I want to be an energetic wife to my husband. I want to be as enthusiastic as he is in whatever we will do together. I want to be blessed by him and be a blessing for him too. I am saving up all this hyped up and fluttering feelings for him until the day that our faces are finally revealed to each other.
This is the story of why, today, I desired again to get married. I used to think it was gone, that these are dreams given to me as seeds, meant to be buried to the ground, forgotten. But in the moments when I thought that this seed was buried deep into the ground and allowed to die were the Aha! moments that God is using now to grow this dream into a beautiful tree, ready to withstand any storm soon (wedding bells ringing!)