In the process of recovering from the devastating emotional fallout of my divorce I spent an exorbitant amount of time trying to understand what really went wrong. Why it couldn’t be salvaged, and looking forward to what I needed to do to ensure any future relationship did not mimic the previous one.
I looked to myself first and foremost, because if there is one thing I’ve learned it is that I can only control me. In fact there is something broken in us if we feel the need to control others. Whenever things go wrong in a relationship I try to analyze what I did wrong. It could be a myriad of things; that I set expectations for others that were unreachable, struggled with the vulnerability needed to develop deep connections, or just simply trusted and loved too much.
In the midst of my deep searching I had many conversations with my wonderful classroom para-educator which helped me immensely. They were a catylst for the transformational way of thinking I have undergone in the past few years. I am so thankful for her kindness to listen to a women who was distraught and searching and the wisdom I acquired in the midst of our conversations.
The one I will always remember gave me the insight to what to look for in a love relationship and that holding out for the right guy was not only okay, but imperative to happiness and success.
On this one particular day she listened as I bulleted out the list of necessary qualifications of a good guy that I could see myself marrying, if God forbid I EVER thought to try that again.
He must be a Christian man. Not one of the statistical Christians that say they are on Internet surveys, yet never set foot in a church. The kind of Christian man that feels his convictions deep in his soul and acts accordingly.
He must be kind. I’ve had enough of angry, spiteful, miserable men who take their anger out on the ones they are supposed to love.
He must be strong. Not physically necessarily, but emotionally and morally strong. Able to lead and make difficult decisions that will impact our lives, weighing the consequences to us all.
He must love music and words. I am a hopeless romantic, music and the heartfelt emotions that pulsate from every lyric moves me to the core. I’m like a plant without water when denied or condemned for loving and listening to music.
He can’t be judgemental. Many Christians are unfortunately and I have found it difficult to understand and give grace to them, let alone try and live a lifetime with someone like that. That kind of thinking is suffocating to love and freedom.
He must be a good communicator. I like to talk, even when I don’t want to because I know it is the very thing that will help us understand, resolve and heal the things we will be faced with in our lives.
I listed all these things and she eventually stopped me.
“You are looking for a male version of you.”
It shocked me at first. It seemed oh so arrogant and, more importantly an impossible task. A male version of me? Not that I think I’m special, but I’m definitely not your average Christian woman.
I know she doesn’t realize this but I pondered those words of wisdom for over a year as I healed from my divorce and when I eventually felt I was ready to date I planned on looking for just that. I wouldn’t settle until I found it, yet part of me felt that I just might be forever alone, positive that he did not exist.
Where would I find a guy that loved music but wasn’t an immature musician who acted like a little boy still?
Where would I find a Christian man who did not see things as strictly black and white, following a certain code only because he was told, but believed that thinking and contemplating the things of God and this world was as important as breathing?
Where could I find a guy that made me laugh with crazy inappropriate humor and then could also share deep feelings and bear his soul to me? Helping me to feel comfortable to do the same.
I almost gave up hope. The task seemed elusive at best, but I finally found him. He is different then me, yet amazingly the same.
My mirror when I’m unsure of myself. My muse when I lack inspiration and drive. My support when I feel like I can’t do this anymore. My heart and soul.
God led me to him, and I’m glad I listened to his still small voice that told me to wait and never settle.