One late Tuesday morning, I hurriedly stopped by at Starbucks in my office building. It was a stressful drive from Sucat to Ortigas and I was dying for a hot latte. Latte in hand, I headed for the door when someone caught my eye. Sitting in a black sofa was a slim woman in her early thirties. She was casually dressed in khaki shorts, white t-shirt, and running shoes. A white gold wedding band graced her ring finger, which held a broadsheet she was reading. The woman's baby boy was sleeping in her lap.
For days, I thought about my reaction to this scene. Looking at them, I felt emotion swell from my chest and throat, and brought tears to my eyes. Why??? (I was not PMS-ing, thank you!)
Someone inside me that morning---wanted to be that woman. To wake up and put on shorts and t-shirt on a weekday. To be free of the need to work outside the home full-time. To be able to sit in a Starbucks at 10am, drink latte, hold my child, and read the paper. I don't know her story, but what I saw was a young mother enjoying her life.
I'm a single woman, and it's true that I have a good life...it's not perfect, but it's a good life. I have a healthy family, great friends, and an interesting and rewarding job. But being single is hard sometimes. Most days the kind of companionship I long for in the world, I don't have. This feeling constantly drives me to seek answers from prayers, and the answer I consistently get is: Be patient.
What kind of an answer is that???
I've been patient enough! Should I keep hoping? For how long? I wrestled in prayers with hope and despair, stormed the heavens. But the answer is still the same---Be Patient.
I would comfort myself that some questions only have answers in heaven. People would ask me time and again why I'm not married, as if being single is a sickness that marriage can cure. And I always have a ready answer. But deep inside, at each passing year, I know that the chance of being a mother and wife is slipping farther away. Dark thoughts would sometimes enter my mind...maybe I am not capable of having a deep, committed relationship with a man, or I'm not attractive enough, not charming and intelligent enough, not sexy enough, not submissive at all! And because of that, I’ll be alone forever.
But I've learned to see the battle more clearly and I've found courage to face the future without fear. Whether I have a husband or not, I believe that I have a constant protector and provider. In my darkest hours, when I've come to the end of myself and tasted loneliness past to what I thought I could bear, I pray for strength and courage.
God has made me the woman I am...being single allowed me the opportunity to learn who this woman is. And I'd rather be single forever than be with someone who wants me to be someone else. This is me---Luna, who doesn't resemble Angelina Jolie, doesn't always say the right things, and is bored with sports!
I still have moments of loneliness and disappointment. But I know I've become a woman with greater capacity to love and I continue to struggle to become a better person. As I think back to that morning at Starbucks, I realize that God's gifts come in many forms, but they're all meant to accomplish that same single purpose---shaping me into a woman he created me to be.