Sunday, September 8, 2013

Once Upon a Time...

Remember how I said last time that big things have been happening in my life these past few months? Well, to sum up the story, I've been considering changing my blog name to be "Poppins Goes to France and Falls in Love With an Italian..." BUT, I think that would be a little less catchy. However, this does mean that I have some explaining to do! I've been turning this story over in my mind for months, trying to figure out the best way to share it on here--should I tell it like a fairytale? Should I make it funny? Should I just give an account of everything that happened? In the end, I've decided to tell it to you the way I see it--as a story of faith, healing, and learning to deeply trust God's promises after recognizing that my trust was wearing thin. And of course, there will be JOY! (And love and maybe some mushy stuff...) I guess that means that for the first time on this blog, things are about to get very personal around here... :)

When I came to France last September, I was very unsure of what I was getting myself into. Most people were excited for me and I was pretty excited for myself. But there were a few people who said to me that deciding to live in France for three years would probably mean that I was limiting my marriage possibilities--I know that might seem like a strange thing to say because there surely isn't an unusual imbalance of men to women in France, but to a 28 year old Mormon girl like myself, those kindly expressed concerns nagged at my mind. Couple that with all-too-many dear souls who for several years have asked me the tremendously personal question, "why aren't you married," and I guess you could say the pressures were running a bit high when I embarked on this adventure.

Anyone who knows me well knows that I'm a deep thinker. But not only do I think a lot, I also thrive on talking through my thoughts to a good human sounding board, especially a practical one who can tell me to be realistic. Unfortunately, my first few months in France were seriously lacking in sounding boards, and frankly, I was pretty lonely. Don't get me wrong--I was surrounded by very good people and I was unbelievably well taken care of by the Roney family. But I didn't feel like I had any friends that I could really talk to. As a result, those nagging concerns started turning into feelings of desperation and even despair. Part of me is embarrassed to admit that I really thought my chance at getting married was past--and I was pretty upset about it. Retrospectively, I'm telling myself that I was being dramatic. People get married in their much older age all the time--28 is not the cut-off for marital bliss! I guess it all goes back to that nun thing I joked about once...

Ooo--who is that handsome fellow?!
Anyway, I started the new year with a sense of quiet desperation and a bit of resignation. I wasn't going on dates at all, and I wasn't really seeing any dateable guys around. But, as I've said before, when life starts looking grim, that's when the "magic" (or I would say miracles) happen. One day, I was killing some time (a terrible expression, isn't it?) on Facebook and I saw a new profile picture of someone I hadn't seen in a few years--five and a half, to be exact. Back in those days, I was a teacher at the Provo Missionary Training Center (MTC), and I had many missionaries file through my classroom. And, of course, being a good teacher (hee hee), I am now friends with many of them on Facebook and like to follow up on their lives. I hadn't heard much from this particular former missionary (he wasn't and still isn't a big Facebook-er), so seeing his face lead me to wonder how he was doing and what he was up to (and I won't lie: I thought he was pretty cute...). So, I commented on his picture--I figured it was my teacherly responsibility, right? HA...ahem. Well, it turned out that an innocent Facebook comment has now changed my life forever.

Do I have your attention yet? Oh, good! Well...I'm afraid the rest will have to wait until next time. And don't worry, the preamble is over and there are still many awesome things to come!

1 comment:

  1. Love it! But the suspense is too great! Hurry it up, Poppins! :)