Oh, Rosalyn. Where to begin with Rosalyn? She’s my roommate, therapist, personal chef, and belly laughing partner. One of the best decisions I’ve made within the last seven months was living with her. She’s a writer who blogs here and (yes, a shameless plug) has published a book which you can purchase here!
HMHW: What do you look for in a group of friends at this age?
Rosalyn: I look for authenticity, a group that can just be with each other without needing to have something to do. Whether that be over dinner or drinks, a group that doesn’t need anything but each other to have fun and get to know each other. I have a lot of married friends and I enjoy their company but I also like the opportunity to get to hang out with single people, which doesn’t happen often. I do like to hang out with my married friends and learn from them, establishing relationships where I feel comfortable enough to ask them for advice when the situation eventually presents itself.
HMHW: Fill in the blank: I’m a closet ______ fan.
Rosalyn: Twilight. I’ve read the books more than once, and own all the movies.
HMHW: Do you have a type/believe in types?
Rosalyn: I think I have a type but I’ve only dated the opposite of my type. But in those situations, I forced it. I think I’m attracted to a specific type – intelligent, well-rounded, taller than me, strong but not super muscly. In an ideal world, I would date a vegetarian or someone who appreciates the fact that I’m a vegetarian.
HMHW: What is your definition of guarding your heart?
Rosalyn: This is one of those things where I know the answer but when it comes to real life, I don’t actually do it. Not giving too much of myself to someone before they earn it, as well as not hoping for too much from the other person. I have high hopes of people and I’m overly optimistic in situations I shouldn’t be.
HMHW: Do you believe in the one? And if you do, do you believe that they’re chosen for you or that they become the one when you choose them?
Rosalyn: Yes. I believe that I will marry one person, and that he will be right for me and we will spend the rest of our lives together. In my head I have this scenario where I’m with this guy and it’s awesome, and then I mess it up. And God’s like, “That could have been the one, but I’m going to redeem the situation and give you someone else.”
HMHW: So in that case, would you say that the first guy was the one?
Rosalyn: No, because God’s opening the door for me to be with someone else.
HMHW: So you believe in multiple “ones”?
Rosalyn: I don’t think there are multiple ones. I guess I fall more on the side of whoever I choose is the one because God knows that I’m going to choose whoever I choose. And I kind of think that believing that there is “the one” is to believe that I don’t have freewill and I know that that’s false.
HMHW: Do you have career goals and do you see yourself remaining in the same career for the rest of your life?
Rosalyn: I do have career goals. I’d like to be an author who writes and releases books up to five times a year. And if my work isn’t as huge as I would like it to be or if I don’t make as much money as maybe Beth Moore, for example, then I would like to be an editor. The concept of having a job where I could just read all the time, and afford to do so, is very appealing.
HMHW: What is the best/worst advice you’ve ever been given on the topic of love/relationships?
Rosalyn: I think the best advice I’ve ever been given is to be myself and to give [relationships] time because you’re on your best behavior for so long. Without giving it time, you would only be in love with the best version of that person until life happens.
For worst advice, I don’t think it’s been explicitly spoken to me, but the idea of settling, of taking compromise way too far. People have these ideas that because of the way society is today, I won’t find the type of person I’m looking for, therefore, I need to make compromises. And I’m not willing to do that.
HMHW: How valuable is community with your own gender to you?
Rosalyn: I think it is pretty valuable. There are lots of things you can’t talk about with guys that you need to talk about with girls. And there are things that are inappropriate for you to do with guys but not with girls. I think that girls’ minds work similarly even though we are all different. I need women around me to keep me accountable in ways that a guy can’t because it would blur the lines between friendship and romance.
HMHW: How do you make decisions about your future in this season of life and has that changed from before?
Rosalyn: My decision-making now is probably different than it’s ever been before. The way it’s worked before is that I’ve seen something I wanted which could maybe align with what God has for my life, and I’ve just gone for it. This time I’m just waiting and whatever happens, I’ve given it to God. If he wants me to go in one direction, then he’ll have to open the door. I know that it’s still my reality and that I have a say, but right now I don’t want a say. Because if I can’t do what I want to do, then he’s just going to have to show me what it is he wants me to do. So God’s making the decisions right now, and as much as that sounds like a cop out answer, it’s the hardest thing I’ve ever done in my life. I get so confused, wanting answers and not getting any in the time that I feel is appropriate. It’s frustrating, but I’m trying to be obedient.
HMHW: What are your thoughts on the differences between masculinity and femininity? Do you think it varies per person or per gender?
Rosalyn: If I’m looking at it from the perspective of a single person, I think that biblical femininity and masculinity are the same. You’re supposed to be Christ-like, period. As far as being married goes, I think there are different roles. My perception of femininity as a wife has changed over the years. The role I intend to fill is one of submission and service. I think that my opinion matters and that he should take it into consideration – it’s not a master-slave relationship. I think you should use the gifts you have to serve your husband. It’s unfair to say that a wife needs to cook and clean and be a mom, because maybe you suck at those things. But I believe it’s important, as a woman, to build your husband up with the talents that you have. In my case, I do cook and clean and sew, and I want to be a mother. But I have other aspirations that I don’t want to let die simply because I’m a wife.
As far as he is concerned, I think that it is his job to be the spiritual leader of the relationship. I believe it’s his job to provide – not necessarily make more money but be able to take account of where we are and make decisions. And all of this should be done in love. If you clasp your hands and your fingers interweave, one hand is doing something different from the other but they’re still interlocked and create one unit. That’s what it should be like.
HMHW: What would you say is the most important lesson you’ve learned in the last year?
Rosalyn: I’m still learning this – it’s the lesson of the fine line. I have found in various situations in my life that there are multiple fine lines, and it’s really confusing. I’m trying to learn how to not straddle these lines, now that I know they exist.
HMHW: Do you feel pressure to be thinking about/preparing for marriage? Is the pressure from within or without?
Rosalyn: I don’t think pressure is the right word. I want to get married; I’m at the stage in my life where I would like to get married soon. So I think about it a lot. It’s annoying that every time I meet a guy, I’m immediately thinking that he could be the one. It’s irritating because all of my friends are in the same phase of life – either single and wanting to be married, or married already – so they just encourage my crazy thoughts. But I don’t feel any pressure; I don’t think I’m running out of time. It’s just something that weighs heavily on my heart because it’s a desire that I have, and since it’s a desire, I have to seek it out and do something about it. And of course, there’s a fine line between putting myself out there and waiting on God to bring him to me.
HMHW: What have you learned about discerning God’s will?
Rosalyn: I have learned that following God’s will is the only good way to go because he knows what’s best for me. Discerning his will is a little more challenging because he doesn’t just lay it out for you. I still have my own ideas and desires that he listens to and incorporates into his plan. It’s all about bringing him the most glory. But the fact that I still get some say makes it really hard for me to discern what it is that he wants.
HMHW: Do you think you’re making the most of your single life?
Rosalyn: Yes, I absolutely, positively believe that I am because I take advantage of my free/alone time. If I want to go do something, I do it. I am getting to know myself, which I think is really important because if I expect someone else to know me, I should probably know me first. And in getting to know myself, I’m getting to know what I want so that I don’t end up blindly throwing myself out there like I’ve done before. I’m grateful for the opportunity to grow as a person at my own pace. I’m also taking advantage of this time by cultivating skills that I would like to use in the future when I’m no longer single. Like sewing, and canning, and brewing beer. I’m learning to be a woman who’s capable of handling some of the responsibilities I have in mind when it comes to being a wife.
HMHW: What did you believe about love and romance a year ago that you don’t believe anymore?
Rosalyn: I believed that it was going to be fun all the time. I don’t want to believe that anymore. If my relationship is fun all the time, then it won’t be real. I think that in order to fall in love, you have to deal with hard things. I am looking forward to being in a relationship where something sucks but you’re still together because the fact that you’re together is more important than whatever it is you’re going through.
HMHW: Do you believe in the ability to be ready for marriage? Do you have factors that you think will indicate your readiness?
Rosalyn: I believe that you can be as ready as you’ll ever be, which is not the same thing as being ready. I don’t think anyone is ever ready to get married, because no matter how long you’ve loved and known this person, you’ve never lived with them.
HMHW: Well the 20% haven’t!
Rosalyn: Well, yes, and I am part of the 20% so as much as I will know that I want to marry a man and spend the rest of my life with him, I wouldn’t have ever lived with him. And the fact is, a week into being married, we will be different people than the week before. No one’s ever ready. When I get to that point, I will know that I love him and I don’t want to be without him and I’m ready to have sex with him and have a life with him. But that’s as ready as I’ll ever be.
HMHW: What are your thoughts on modesty and its effect or lack thereof on daily life?
Rosalyn: Personally, I don’t have a problem with modesty. I’m not the biggest fan of my body so I’m not going to show it off in a provocative way. Having said that, if I want to wear a dress, I’m going to wear a dress. Modesty isn’t just about what you’re wearing; it’s how much of yourself you’re willing to give to the general public, emotionally and physically. The only person you’re supposed to be completely immodest and naked around is God…and the person you’ll spend the rest of your life with…and the people in the room when you’re having a baby.
HMHW: *belly laughing” oh my gosh, my mother would’ve loved that comment!
Rosalyn: BUT I think it starts with how much of yourself you’re willing to show. I want to maintain a sense of mystery and not tell the whole world my business. So yeah, a bathing suit is one of the most “immodest” things you could wear, but it all depends on where you wear it. Everyone expects you to wear that on a beach. If you’re wearing a bathing suit to church, you’re trying to communicate something and don’t know how to do it. In which case, you’re probably wearing a trash bag emotionally because you don’t know how to express yourself any other way.
HMHW: What are your opinions on pursuing/being pursued with regards to gender roles?
Rosalyn: I’m a woman; I am to be pursued. It’s not my job to pursue. I can put myself out there – I don’t need to be stone cold or build a fortress around myself. I need to be open and inviting because then he’ll be encouraged to pursue. But it is his job to pursue me, and if he can’t ask me out on a date, how can I expect him to lead the relationship?
HMHW: What’s the hardest part of being a 20-something?
Rosalyn: Transition. Through all of my twenties, every year has been a transition based on the school cycle. People are constantly leaving and coming; my community is constantly changing. I move every single year, and have since I graduated from high school. I’m trying to find something that keeps me stable so that my year is just a year, not a cycle. And I don’t think that’s going to happen until I get married and start having children. To be at the precipice of change and not know any details other than it happened last year and will probably happen again next year and the year after, is just frustrating. I just want a year that doesn’t cycle in that way.