Getting married was something I always wanted. Mind you, I didn’t plan my wedding in advance, I just knew that it was one of many goals of mine. On one hand, I’m extremely ambitious, Type-A, MBA tucked under my arm with the keys to the Corporate job in America. On the other hand I love to clean on Sundays, I love cooking dinner every night (leftovers for lunch dear!) and I was all too excited to take my husband’s last name. But I’m not worried about having it *all*, I just want what I want.
My twitter bio reads: “Sweet ‘n Sassy Southern Belle. Sex-positive 50’s Housewife Feminist”
If you’re active on the interwebs you will know that most people cannot grasp the above description. It all too conflicting they will say. Strangely enough, many conversations that I see online either via Twitter, Facebook, or the blogs tend to look at life and all that comes with it as Black & White. This or That. The idea that most things exist along a spectrum is beyond comprehension.
When it comes to relationships, and especially marriage, this is plenty true. There are these “factions”, if you will, of people who love to discuss relationships. There are those who are anti-relationships and spend a great deal of time explaining and extolling that stance. There are those that are pro-relationships and marriage and insist that if you aren’t something is wrong with you. Then there are those that are caught in the middle but actively participate in these conversations as if they want to be convinced a certain way. Just in this paragraph I have proven that there is in fact a spectrum, however it seems as though these conversations insist on demanding that there is only but “one way”.
What I’d like to focus on is the conversation that seems to center around reasons not to get married among folks who would consider it. I am in FULL support of those who do not wish to get married. It is truly not for everyone. For those that do however, my humble opinion is that marriage is what you make it. Ideally if you are a quirky individual with non-traditional traits, you can in fact find someone that loves and adores that, with whom to be forever happy with. You make the rules. It seems that many people simply don’t believe this.
While I believe marriage is best for those who seek it, I do sometimes feel like I should defend my choice to get married. I cannot count the number of times I’ve been congratulated on my recent marriage with a thinly veiled disdain. For example, “Oh Congrats! I would never do it, but you guys look great together!” Or “Good Luck to you guys! It’s not for me, I can’t be someone I’m not.” Or “I can’t lock myself into taking care of someone else, but your wedding was gorgeous!”
Well thanks, I think?
Here’s the thing. when T.B. proposed to me last summer I was OVER THE MOON. Why yes of COURSE I wanted forever with him. Wedding planning sucked (it’s so exhausting! Who knew!?), but my heart was so full and bursting with the thought of us jumping the broom together. I even did this extremely mushy countdown on FB of my Top 10 Reasons I was happy to be his wife, 10 days before the wedding. I was “that” girl. Our wedding was beautiful, a ton of fun, and the honeymoon was amazing (Costa Rica gets 5 stars!). But I’ll tell the truth: When we got back to the States I felt different. I was no longer *me*, I was Mrs. W. It took me a few weeks to even remember to introduce myself that way, and every time I did I felt weird. I started to freak out slightly in my mind like “Oh gosh! Am I someone else!?”
When I got right down to it, it was just a name change. Don’t get me wrong, that is a big deal. I’m proud of his name and extremely happy that I took it for my own. While it’s delightful to call him my husband, and I look at him as a wife, overall we are the same. I’m still his goofy girl and he’s still my serious boy. Our level of love and care for one another has gone up several notches, but it’s nothing we can’t handle. I still have my girls nights out, and he still has his “boys only” parties. Our family and friends love, respect, and honor us both (they said “I Do” too at our ceremony, they are locked in!) but they do not treat us differently.
We don’t want to lose ourselves in “us”. That’s why we chose each other to begin with. I love him and he loves me. Not our representatives or made up personas to please the other person. We fit together. We complement each other. We have balance. Given that, I was able to avoid some of the common fears I see floating around social media surrounding marriage. I don’t fear losing myself. I don’t fear “missing out”. Together he and I have already traveled several countries and created bucket lists for one another. I don’t fear lack of “me” time. I don’t fear submission or control. He chose me, and I chose him, and together we’ll live this life. We said our own vows at our ceremony to make sure the commitment we made was truly our own. We make the rules.
For me I think it’s been best that I never over-romanticized love and marriage. I never created unreal expectations. I’ve seen the good, the bad, and the uncommonly ugly. I don’t over-complicate it, it’s complex enough.
I say all of this to say a few things:
- 1) If you ever think marriage is on the horizon for you, do not be discouraged by the boundaries that others put around it. You can have whatever marriage, with whatever person you so choose.
- 2) Understand that Love is a purposeful act. It’s not magic and it’s not a Disney movie. Don’t set yourself up.
- 3) Love and Marriage is wonderful. Blissfully so. I’d pick up his silly socks for eternity just for the warmth that he provides with his embrace, respect, and adoration.
Here are some of our wedding pics! All thanks to FamousWilliam.com