We were together, but not dating. And there’s a difference.
It all started during freshman year in high school when my mom took my sister college visiting and I tagged along for the ride. One stop that will probably always stick in my memory is when we visited Franciscan University and I prayed in their 24-hour adoration chapel.
As we paused to adore, I prayed about whether or not I should attend Franciscan University. But that wasn’t the main message God wanted to give me that day. Instead He decided to shock me with the request that I not date or kiss a boy until I was out of high school. At the time, I had the biggest crush on a junior boy at my high school. He was totally out of my reach, especially since my parents wouldn’t allow me to date until I was 16 years old. But I had been hoping that upon my 16th birthday it would all work out and we would get together. (Freshman dreams.) The idea of not dating until I graduated was totally foreign to me and very unwanted. But what could I do? The Lord had made a request. And I said yes.
Freshman year was a hard time for me. And for reasons too long to explain, towards the end I became very depressed. Everything I knew was spiraling out of control and I no longer felt that I could pray to God. I tossed out a lifeline to my friend David who referred me to his brother, Andrew, who would “know better” what to do. I poured my heart out to Andrew and sent him poems expressing just how low I felt. “I am moving backwards from what I loved a year ago. I don’t know what I love now, but I love you because you are the same and I’m drowning,” I wrote. “Let me hold onto you. I’m drowning.”
Andrew had poems of his own.
As I found my hope and Andrew encouraged me through my struggles (a story for another day), he sent me these poems. Poems of a surgeon healing someone’s heart, a taxi driver taking someone to Heaven, and my favorite, a soldier guarding a red flower in a farmer’s garden. My own girly curiosity got the best of me, and I interpreted. “Who is your red flower, Andrew?”
Over the course of a conversation interpreting the red flower poem, I told Andrew that I had found a soldier, or as it became known, a souldier (one to guard my soul). “Well, if you don’t mind my asking, am I your soldier? Cause I’d love to have you as my red flower if it’s alright with you,” he said after much beating around the bush.
What could I do now? How could I tell him about my promise to the Lord? We both knew I had another three years of high school to go. I didn’t know what Andrew would say, but I mustered the guts and responded, “You are my soldier. But I promised God I wouldn’t date until I was out of high school. So my soldier will have to be patient if he still wants me.”
Andrew’s immediate response was, “That’s great- True love does wait. I’m willing.”
“Then so am I.”
Stay tuned for Waiting for Dating Part 2…
- Red Flower- the Love Poem that Won My Heart (catholicsinglelife.wordpress.com)
- Waiting for Dating Part 2- One of God’s Most Precious Diamonds (catholicsinglelife.wordpress.com)
- Poems: Your Love Gives Me Strength (catholicsinglelife.wordpress.com)