Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Growing Wings: Part Three

God does not forget us in our time of need.

On November 2, 2010, I gave birth to a healthy little girl. She was given the name Elizabeth Grace. It was a name that had continued to pop into my mind throughout my pregnancy, although I didn't love it. But sometimes the meaning of a name is more important than the name itself.

Elizabeth: Consecrated to God
Grace: Divine means of strength of help

It was perfect.

A few months earlier, I had gotten a job. It didn't pay much, but it was decent and I was able to pay my bills. My coworkers turned into friends who lifted me up with their caring and support. Members of my church came together. Some of the ladies threw a baby shower, and literally showered me with love. It seemed as if my parents' entire neighborhood was rooting for me.
I might have been dealt a difficult hand, but be it church, work, or home, I was surrounded by angels.

God does not forget us.

Life with a newborn was glorious, and I basked in it. Elizabeth slept on my chest at night. It was the only way she would. For months I fell asleep lying on my back, head to one side, my hand over my slumbering baby.
I was so happy.

Every now and then, though, I had an unsettling thought:

Will I ever get married again?

I wanted to. Divorce had not scared me off. I knew that not all men would leave their wife. I was afraid of being alone. How was I going to date with a job and a new baby? It could be years before I found anyone and then we'd have to date for at least a year until we could get engaged and then...

It became overwhelming to think about. My parents were great, but it felt sad to think that I might be living with them for years, not being able to see my baby while I was working. I would probably need to go back to school to be able to get a better job, which meant spending even more time away from my baby. It sounded like a lonely life, for the both of us. Sometimes it was hard to stay positive, with such a bleak, lonely future.

I wasn't sure if I was ready to date yet, but part of me wanted to see what was out there. But how? I refused to date anyone from work. That was a recipe for disaster. It felt too depressing to go to church with the young single adult group. Most of them were college students who had never been married, let alone had any kids. I didn't feel like I fit in there anymore. There was no way I was going to go out to any clubs. I was pretty sure I wasn't going to find any husband material shaking my post-partum booty on the dance floor.

That's when it occurred to me: online dating.

I instantly dismissed the thought.
No way. That's for socially awkward weirdos.

But I kept thinking about it. It wouldn't hurt to see what kinds of people were out there. Looking was a good first step. I found a website and created an account.
I clicked through several profiles and was concerned, to say the least. Then discouraged. There was a reason many of these people were still single.

This is going to be a long journey.

Days turned into weeks, which turned into months. Eventually I began to give up hope in the online dating scene and decided to stop. Maybe I just wasn't ready. I logged into my account and was about to delete my profile, when I saw a message from someone who didn't look like they had a Star Wars shrine in their closet or a stack of Playboy magazines under their bed.

He seemed harmless. In fact, maybe not so bad.
So I replied.
His name was Mike.
His wife had left him and the children a few years ago.
He had a great job and was raising two kids all by himself.
He went to church
He liked "Lost", my favorite TV show.
And he hated black licorice.
Above all, he seemed normal.

It seemed I'd found some potential, after all.

We met. Things went well. We dated. Things went even better. We came from similar backgrounds, had the same values, and even found ourselves thinking the same things. The children loved me and we all got along beautifully.

Several months later, Mike asked me to marry him.

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God does not forget us.

3 comments:

  1. I love you so much Mallory. I love you like I love my own sisters. And there's so much time, and so many trials and celebration that has happened in both of our lives since we last spoke, let alone saw each other. But I so appreciate your bravery in sharing your tender experiences. Thank you! God does love you, and I'm overwhelmed with gratitude in knowing that he loves you, that he loves me, and that he won't forget us. Thank you for the beautiful reminder!
    P.S. You're gorgeous and glowing in these pictures!
    P.P.S. Keep up the blogging. More people than you realize are reading, and you're talented in your writing!

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  2. I agree with Amber you are a very talented writer. What journey you have been on and I am SO happy you have found your happy ending.

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  3. Omigosh. I'm so touched by your story. You are so strong. So glad you found your true love. And that you didn't have to shake post partum booty at the dance floor to find him. Hahaha. That part was great.

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