*This is like a 2 year old post that I never got around to publishing.*
Before returning home from my mission, we were given this piece of paper with the task to write down our goals for the next 6 months, 1 year, and I think up to 5 years…. Can’t quite remember. What I do remember though were my “plans”. Still being a missionary at the time I felt they were in harmony with what God wanted me to do. They were a good mix of spiritual and temporal goals, that would definitely allow for some stretching and growing. However, apparently my timeline for these goals was not on par with God’s…….
Missions and Marriage: 2 of the 3 most common “M” words in Mormon (there’s the 3rd word, in case you were wondering) jargon. When you’re a missionary, marriage almost becomes this taboo thing you shouldn’t talk or even think about… Which is absurd, because it’s the next step in life. I was never very good at not thinking about “real life” or “life after the mission”.
On my list of post-mission goals and plans were things like:
- Back pack through Europe
- Graduate from college by 2018
- Date a lot of different people, stay single for a good long while
- Get married around 25….
Shortly after returning home, I was perusing Facebook and messaging people I was “homesick” for in Florida, and stalking people I hadn’t heard from in 18 months, you know… the usual. As I was browsing, I got a message from a friend who I hadn’t seen or heard from since my farewell. It was surprising to hear from this particular individual, as he was the guy I had dumped before I left on my mission… Ha! Not expecting to hear from him at all. However, since we had parted as friends and he’s always been a great guy, I guess it wasn’t that weird.
Long story short, this conversations lead to texting. That first text led to constant, day long conversations that started and ended with our sleep schedules. Our day long conversations led to our “Second-First Date” which was riding horses (my favorite!).
Side note about the horse thing: My horse that I’ve had for near 10 years now, is a notorious man hater! He and my high school boyfriend were living versions of Flynn Rider and Maximus from “Tangled”. They did not mesh. I knew that my horse would have to get along with whoever I ended up marrying, because it could be somewhat hazardous if he didn’t.
And then (two weeks post mission) Mr. Right decided to show up in my life… Again! I say again because he wasn’t some handsome stranger I’d never met before. He was an old boyfriend from before the mission. Who’d have thought? I can tell you, neither one of us expected it. However, it has truly been the best “surprise” of my life to become reacquainted with this man, and to fall in love with him. I may finally have learned (ok not really because I’m still far too much of a control freak/perfectionist) to stop trying to make all the plans and truly “let go and let God”. But I do know for sure that He knew I needed this man now, not later. He knew I’d be able to experience a kind of happiness I’d only ever day dreamed about much sooner in my life by bringing Mr. Right into the picture as soon as he did. He also knew my goals and plans wouldn’t have to change very much because Mr. Right is supportive and interested in having those adventures as well.
I always wondered in the back of my head if marriage really was in my future. Doctrinally speaking I know it always has been, but as far as it coming to pass in this life… I was worried. Part of me was genuinely convinced I didn’t even want it because I’ve seen my fair share of ugly, hate filled, sad marriages. But I think the underlying lesson from this particular experience is yet another reminder that Gods love is very real. Our happiness as His children is His number one priority. His course corrections to my “perfect plan” we’re exactly what I needed.
All the other things on my list will happen, in good time. Mr. Right is going to be an excellent eternal adventure buddy, which is what I’ve always hoped for. You gotta have a good adventure pal…. But most importantly, I needed yet another reminder that it’s ok to let my plans fall apart so something even better could fall together.