I know that some people will not understand why I'm putting this out there, and that's okay. Not every blog post is for everyone, I get that. But I also think that what I have to say may resonate with others, so I'm just gonna do it.
Okay, I'll quit babbling and just get to it.
At least once a week, someone asks me when Tom and I are going to get engaged, or why Tom hasn't proposed yet, or elbows me in the ribcage and whispers "your next!" when someone at work is talking about their wedding plans.
And I'm gonna be honest, it's pretty annoying. But tonight, in this blog post, I'll tell you why we aren't engaged.
We aren't ready.
That answer in itself should clarify y things, but I've found it doesn't. So let me expand:
Tom and I are both the type of people that take marriage really seriously. It's not about a wedding, a party, a ceremony, or a ring. It's about a lifetime commitment of love, support, and companionship. At 27 years old, I personally do not feel like I am ready to enter into lifelong commitment with someone. Even though I love Tom, and I feel confident about our future together, it doesn't mean I'm ready to get married. We want to develop our relationship, and we want to do that slowly. We've already been though a lot as a couple that has pushed our patience to the limit- and we've survived. But we're young. And before we say "I do", there is a lot we want to experience- as two people in a serious relationship.
On a personal note, I spent majority of my life hiding from who I was and hiding from the world. It's only within the last two years that I have learned to love myself, my body, and to be confident in who I am. I'm still getting to know ME. Tom has helped me get to this point, and I am forever grateful for that- but I would like to continue to get to know ME before it becomes us. Maybe that's selfish, but maybe I need to be selfish after years of self destruction.
In sum, we aren't ready. We have a lot to learn, about ourselves and about each other, before we feel we can get married.
I'm coming at this topic from a few different angles....First, as a person who is constantly asked about the future of her relationship. There's some frustration there. Secondly, as a person who is a people pleaser. I've been this way my whole life- I just want people to like me, and to agree with my choices. So maybe that puts the pressure on a little tighter. I know people want me to get married, so sometimes it makes me feel like I am doing something wrong. And third, as a person who used to say similar things to her friends. Not necessarily the marriage question, but I used to be pretty vocal about my friends relationships when I didn't really agree with their choices. But soon it became pretty clear that my opinion was not going to change much, and also that my role as a friend was to be there to listen, support, and comfort. Which can get tiring, and it hurts me when they are hurt, but unless they are physically or mentally in danger, I no longer tell them what I think. I've learned it's their life to live, and whether or not it is clear to me why they are doing certain things, I've got to just let them do it. Again, trust me, I still step in if I fear they are in danger, physically or mentally. Or, I take a step back. But you get my point... I hope.
So I've been in every position before, and I get that people, for the most part, just really want be to be happy, so that's why they ask. But personally, I'm really happy with the way things are right now, and I'd like to just enjoy it.
I feel as though society has a plotted timeline of how things should go, and when someone takes too long or misses a spot, people start to ask questions. And to that I say this: There is no timeline. Nothing in life is promised. What you do in your life may not be what works for me in my life. The wonderful thing about life is that we were all created to be unique- and so our lives, and the paths we take, are also unique.
This post is not to say that I think what Tom and I are doing is the way everyone should do it. Some people fall madly in love and get married within a year, and live incredibly happy lives. Some people never get married, and also live incredibly happy lives. My point is that everyone is on their own timeline, and that's totally okay.
By the way, although my post was specific to getting engaged/married, it could really apply to anyone who gets pressured to take the next steps in life, whether it's to get their drivers license, declare a major, get a job, have a baby, etc. There's pressure at every stage in life. To anyone who's feeling that sort of pressure, know that you are in control of your own destiny, not anyone else. Do what you think is right for you. If you make a mistake, own it and find the beauty in it. At least you tried. Dare to be who you want to be.
And also, just shake it off.