As I get older I realize how much our Heavenly Father really understands, and knows me. He really knows what we need in our lives to prepare us for our future. I have mentioned it before on my blog, but my ULTIMATE quote is this:
Every person God puts into our lives,
Every experience that He gives us,
Is the PERFECT preparation
For the future only HE can see.
As I look back into my past, the years of 1998 & 1999 were very hard for me relationship wise. I had been through multiple relationships that never seemed to pan out. Yet it was those very heartaches that prepared the way for me to meet Shawn.
My ‘preparation’ began in the spring of 1998. I had just sent off my missionary only to have him return a month later with health issues. That was the beginning of a drama that kind of opened my eyes as to whether or not I wanted to be a part of his family. I cared a lot about him. Heck, I was sure we were going to get married, but things changed once he actually went back into the field (on his mission.) We continued to write, but I also continued to date.
That is when I met Joel. He was funny, and so much different than Brodie. For the first time I realized that there was someone else that could make me happy. I immediately was smitten with him, and thought it possibly could go somewhere. We dated for about 6 weeks, but he ended up falling for my good friend Becky. Coincidently they ended up getting married!
So life went on, and so did my quest. I still don’t understand why I thought it was so important to be ‘in love.’ I think that was where my problem lied. I was so busy trying to find someone to ‘love’ that I really didn’t know who I was and what I really wanted.
I even ventured into the online world, and met a guy named Brad. He was funny, sweet, and I found myself thinking I was ‘in love’ once again. The problem was that he lived in Oregon, and I lived in Arizona. He actually came down here, and I went up there…yet as everything goes…it just didn’t work out.
I then went on to meet Tim. He was that hot guy that everyone always wanted. Muscles, quiet, and I thought he was great. He was a family friend of one of my very good friends, Jenny. I was floored that a guy like that would actually like a girl like me. We hooked up, and as always, I was ‘in love’ quickly, only to have my heart crushed when he dumped me for the bubbly girl with larger umm…hands. :)
That was when I had it. I really took a step back in self reflection, and learned something about myself. In all these relationships, there was one thing in common. I would meet a guy. I would like the guy. I would then try to change myself in hopes of attempting to have him like me back. For instance, with Brodie, he LOVED everything and anything Volkswagen. I have never had anything really against the make, but suddenly I LOVED them as much as he did. When I looked at all my past relationships, I saw that trend. Their loves became MY loves. I was never really myself.
I also found that I was so obsessed with the idea of being ‘in love.’ I would immediately think that ‘I loved him,’ that we were so perfect for each other. I think I seriously wore my heart on my sleeve. I so desperately wanted someone to love me back. I would give my love away so quickly, only to have it stomped upon.
That was when I made a decision. I knew that I really needed to find out who I was. What did I really want in a relationship? What qualities did I really want in a man? I wanted to make sure that the next time I professed my love to someone…that I REALLY meant it. That I REALLY knew that I loved him, and that I wasn’t just in love with the idea of being ‘in love.’ I now just wanted to have fun. Get to know guys, and really find the qualities that I wanted in an eternal partner. I didn’t want to get serious; I just wanted to have fun for a while before I settled down.
So the fun began. I dated up a storm, and had so much fun meeting all sorts of people. I reflected back on my past relationships, and figured out what I REALLY liked about the personalities of each of those people. I was in no hurry to jump into any type of relationship. For once in my life, I knew what I wanted. I was sure of whom I was. I had finally found my true self.
As with everything, that is when Shawn entered into my life.
To be continued....