The week before my 25th birthday, my mother and I got into a very heated debate about her creating an online dating profile. This is funny for many reasons:
1) My mom just recently learned how to use an iPhone
2) I am not sure if she actually knows enough about dating to be making a dating profile
3) This is not the first time she has asked me to do this.

I am not anti-online dating. Some of my most favorite couples on earth met online. Actually, it’s super helpful in the community I’m from, where we are spread across the nation and it’s difficult to meet someone on similar life paths, looking to settle down, etc. I have been to many happy weddings where the couple met online. I encourage it – if that’s where your heart is and you have the heart space to enter into a romantic relationship.

So, what am I anti?

The idol that marriage has become in my community – how my singleness has become my one and only identity, the strain it has placed on my relationship with my parents and other family members, the amount of anxiety it has placed on many of my friends.

For the seventeenth time this month, my parents reminded me that I wasn’t married. I’m 25. When my mom was my age, she was expecting her first child. At 24, she was responsible for bringing life into this world, taking care of a husband and his parents, creating a home in a new country, and kicking ass in doing so. My mom lived in a different time. My mom is my hero – but it kills me that she hasn’t realized that my timeline might be slightly different than hers.

And to be completely frank, this eats at my soul, a lot. I write and speak about being an empowered woman, a lot – but this little voice in my head often speaks to me in my sleep – why are you not married? Why have you not found the one? Why does it seem like every woman in my life is not struggling with this? Why was I invited to seven weddings this year?

Is… there something wrong with me?

Look – the truth is, there might actually be something wrong with me, but I can believe in a God that is bigger than the wrong in me. In fact, when God created me, he created me with divine purpose, a plan, and God knows my future partner. I wrestle with this a lot, enough to admit that I have no real advice other than to rest. Rest in your purpose and following the call of God in your life.  The worst place to be (a place I have been caught in, catch myself from falling into all the time), is to allow yourself to be caught up in the spirit of comparison, in believing that there is something actually wrong with you, that you are not enough.

And my hope – for every woman who is in my shoes, who is on my journey, who has their parents driving them bonkers, who can’t have a conversation without being reminded of their “singleness,” nothing should block you from loving yourself, your timing, and knowing that the best is yet to come.

I am a person beyond my relationship status. The change in my relationship status will be an incredibly important day in my life. But it will not be the best day of my life. The best days of my life are to come – and my partner and I will spend the rest of our lives creating better days, taking on new roads and rivers, and empowering others to believe into their callings.

Living love boldly, courageously, and without fear.

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