This isn’t going to be a post where I give you tips on how to make the wait easier; or how to stop desiring marriage; or why you shouldn’t yearn for these things.
This is a post where I identify with you, fellow longing heart; and share my own thoughts and feelings.
Because this is about much more than first kisses and wedding dresses.
These feelings of longing are rooted deep. And they’re hard. The wait is hard. Longing to be a wife and mother is not a trivial thing. In a lot of us women, there’s something deep down that naturally awaits being a homemaker. As women, the intense longing to be married, the deep desire to snuggle our own babies, is something that’s instilled in us by default.
It’s not silly. It’s not selfish.
It’s the way we are designed.
Ever since I was a little girl, I’ve wanted to be a wife and a mommy. When I was just a baby myself, I would tenderly care for my baby-dolls. Growing up, I was delighted every time there was a new baby in the house. As I entered my teenage years, I started dreaming about what it would be like to meet the right man and get married. I’m a hopeless romantic, crying at every proposal I watched (from movies and Youtube videos) or read, and sighing blissfully at every wedding. When I turned eighteen, it suddenly shifted from dreaming, to longing. I was an adult. My friends and cousins were dating, getting married, having children. All at once, it was real. I could get married – I was of age now. But nothing happened. I never even so much as went on a first date.
In truth, I haven’t been waiting very long. But it startles me how acute the unfulfilled longing is sometimes. In a room filled with relatives, from sweet grandparents who’ve been married many years, to newly weds exchanging happy looks; from lovely moms of many children exclaiming how time flies, to new mothers cuddling their first little one; and everyone in between – they’re all connected and belonging and caught up in this beautiful cycle of life. And I’m off to the side, unsure where I fit in. Wondering when it will be my turn. When I can be part of this warm family-ness in front of me.
I want to be married. I hope for a man who can be my partner in life – a friend. I long to carry a baby close to my heart. I wish I could present my mom and dad with grandchildren.
Why, Lord? Why have I never been asked out? Never been noticed? Never been pursued? Am I not worth it? Not pretty enough? Not godly enough? Not what men are looking for in a wife?
Why me? I know of young women just like myself, with our deepest desire to be a wife and mother; and yet we are the ones waiting. It seems like the women who are out pursuing other careers and who hardly put much thought into marriage, are the ones getting married.
And we – who read books on godly marriage, study what makes a healthy relationship, pray for our future husband, know how to cook and bake and keep house and care for children – we, who all we want is to be a good, old-fashioned woman, to pursue wifehood and motherhood the way You designed, are left alone and grappling with this intense desire we can’t seem to get rid of.
Can’t You tell me what Your plan is here, Lord?
But He doesn’t. And I’ve struggled and struggled over this. However, I thought of something last night. Even if the longing is unfulfilled – even in the desire is unmet all my life, there is eternity. And when I enter into eternity, and meet my Lord face to face, it says He will wipe away my every tear.
4 And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away.
I think that means tears over singleness. Tears over an empty womb. Tears over no grandchildren. Tears over not feeling like part of life’s beautiful cycle of family.
Those tears will be wiped away, too. And pain we feel over these things will be gone. And we will be part of a beautiful family in heaven. God’s family. The ultimate family. And, oh, how joyous and fulfilling it will be.
I don’t know, I suppose it just comforts me to know that God will wipe away those tears. It’s not something we have to bear forever. So even if I don’t get married, or even if I get married but don’t have babies, or even if I get both those things, but have some other unmet longing or painful loss – God will take away those burdens. Perhaps not today. But someday, we know He will.
One last thought.
Don’t be an empty shell of what God created you to be.
Don’t be listless. Don’t live forever melancholy. Be zealous. Be passionate. Hold onto hope. Dream for the future. Pray about your desires and pray for God’s will. It’s not wrong to hope, still, for marriage and children. Just don’t let it overcome you so that every day your longing isn’t met, you’re crushed.
So dream. God created us to dream. We’re most alive when we dream.
And every day, love people. Love who God has put in your life. Love the people around you. God has given you a purpose. Right now. Here. Today.