Back to my single life as an airplane ride. I'm sure that's as ridiculous as it sounds, but I'm going to to flaunt it like I did that side pony tail in 2nd grade. I look back on that with regret now, but I loved it at the time. (I regret my hair in middle school even more, but we won't go into that. It's too humiliating.)
I still struggled with being single, but at this point I had a great group of friends to hang out with. I had church and work activities. I couldn't wait to get on with getting married, but I also loved all the things that I was getting to do as a single person. I liked being busy every night. I was having fun and feeling like I was doing something useful with my singleness.
A little over 2 years ago, our priest gave a homily about praying for the things you want in life. The readings for the day were based on God's promise to give Abraham a son, but then Abraham had to wait for 15 years before that came about. Monsignor said that the first thing that we need to do is pray for increased desire. I thought the man was flat crazy. Keep in mind that what I wanted is what I've wanted for a good 6-8 years at this point, and the desire was increasing that entire time. I did not understand the logic of that prayer. Still, there's crazy and there's crazy. And Msgr. is a crazy man of God. It didn't matter that I didn't really understand. I started to pray for an increased desire for marriage and family, if that was God's will for me.
Not long after that, I started to notice these bittersweet little pangs when I would see an older couple holding hands or a father with a small daughter or things of that sort. It was what I would call a beautiful pain. It caught me off guard because it actually caused a little physical pain, but it was such a wonderful desire that it was sweet at the same time. At first, I had no idea why I was feeling this way, until I remembered that prayer. It became a more frequent and more intense for a while, but it was still sweet.
Then it kept growing. It was no longer bittersweet little pangs. It was a lot more like getting knocked down by sweaty, gross guys in sumo wrestling suits. Of course, I'm also in a sumo suit, so once I'm on the ground, I'm ineffectively waving my relatively tiny arms and legs like a beetle on its back. If I do manage to get up, the desires knock me down again. Relentless. It's no longer sweet. Now it's a constant, gnawing ache that is still physically present.
It's the times flat on my back that are teaching me to depend on God more and more. So they're good, just not so fun.