November is filled with anniversaries in my life.
Three years ago this month I received my first CatholicMatch emotigram from Peter-153167, asking if we’d had any snow in South Carolina yet. (I don’t think Pete realized that South Carolina rarely gets snow.)
Two years ago this month, on my birthday and kneeling before a statue of the Blessed Mother in my hometown church, Peter asked me to be his bride.
One year ago this month, Pete and I broke the news to our parents and family that we were expecting our first baby.
I started writing for CatholicMatch in 2005. Back then I was a single girl with big hopes and dreams – uncertain if, when, or how the Lord would make my dreams for marriage and family life come true. Now that so much as happened in my life across three Novembers, I’m in awe of how quickly the Lord can work when His timing is right.
When I share my CatholicMatch success story, people often ask me if I have any regrets or if I’d do anything differently as I look back on my online dating experience with 20/20 clarity.
I’ve made lots of mistakes, experienced heartache, heartbreak, and all sorts of disappointments and discouragements on CatholicMatch. Yet I don’t regret any of those experiences. I truly believe the Lord uses everything on the “broken road” that Rascal Flats sings about to prepare us for our future.
In fact, I only have one regret of my single years.
I regret the huge amount of time and emotional energy I spent worrying about my future. As I watched college friends get married, attended baptism celebrations for college roommates’ children, and helped plan my younger sister’s wedding, I often wondered if God had forgotten about me, or if I’d be single forever, or if I’d have to settle for less than what I was looking for in a spouse in order to get married. Looking back now, I regret wasting so much useless time being worried and pessimistic when I now know that God had a wonderful plan in store for me.
If I could go back, I’d do my best to utilize the awesome years of being single with a better attitude and more trust in God to take care of me.
Now that I’m a stay-at-home mom of Mark, a rambunctious 5-month-old, I look back on all the freedom of my single years to do many wonderful things that you can’t do as easily – or in some cases at all – with a baby in tow. Living with reckless abandon to the will of God is the surest way to be happy in whatever state of life you are in – including (and perhaps especially) when you are single.
This November I’m looking forward to my baby’s first Thanksgiving and a road trip to Grandma and Grandpa’s house in Pennsylvania. I’m not looking forward with as much enthusiasm to my 30th birthday, which is also this month, but somehow I’ll survive my husband’s teasing and get through it. (He seems to think I gave him a hard time on his 30th birthday two years ago). I know that whatever happens this month, though, it will be memorable.
November is just special.