I was 9 years old when my mom turned 40 and from then on my little ears were filled with how awful being 40+ is. “40 is when everything goes downhill!” she would say begrudgingly as she pulled on skin here or there, pointed out wrinkles left and right. The words stuck with me and have formed a pretty awful picture of 40. Well, today I am 40.
Never in a million years did I imagine I would be a 40-year-old single mom. I got married at 22 because that’s the picture I desired. A picture with a husband, a biological kid or two, an adopted kid or two, a house, a yard, and a dog. Ya know, the ideal family!! But then my picture was ruined. God led me on a path through darkness and then redemption. As terrible as it felt I am blessed by it because I would not love Jesus the way I do today without those experiences. He allowed that pain and suffering so that He could heal me completely. And now I am a living example of his grace, forgiveness, and restoration.
Thus, I repainted my picture (with God’s hand on the brush this time!) and am thrilled that it includes such adorable little faces. But, there’s still someone missing. I desire a husband for me and a dad for my boys. 40 and single. It hurts. It feels wrong and uncomfortable. It feels hopeless at times. It’s exhausting and depleting. It’s frustrating and infuriating. An older male friend once told me he doesn’t date women over 40 because they’re bitter. Am I bitter? When I look around at my lack of options you bet I feel bitter sometimes. But with Jesus I remember that He is good all the time. He has a reason for my singleness at 40. My life is to glorify Him and not myself and what I have or don’t have.
Still, I mourn. I mourn that I may never be pregnant and have a biological child now. I mourn that even if I get married my future husband and I will likely never get to celebrate a 50th, 40th or even 30th wedding anniversary. I mourn that my future husband didn’t get to see X’s first steps or J’s first soccer game. I mourn that he’s missed the opportunity to form that early bond and attachment to my sons. I mourn that he wasn’t there for milestone after milestone in our lives. So I grieve. I grieve the loss of that dream, AGAIN. And I continue to wait patiently and contently.
I can grieve but also believe God is the God of miracles. I can feel sad but also feel peace in knowing God has my best interests in mind. I can cry but also feel Him crying with me. If anyone knows how alone feels it is Jesus. He suffered alone, he was betrayed by his friends, and he died on that cross alone. Following Him doesn’t guarantee me a pain-free life on Earth. It guarantees me a pain-free eternity with Him. So I will follow Him wherever He leads me whether that is to remain single or get the pleasure of sharing my life with someone. I will uphold my Kingdom values and be as Christ-like as I can be for my boys and for the world. I will let Christ define what 40 means and not my mom! After all, with God, time and age are irrelevant. He created time. He sits outside of time. And I pray my time on Earth is stamped with Jesus regardless of it being husband-less or husband-full.
Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted.Matthew 5:4
#thisis40 #40andfabulous #40andfine #singlemomlife