I’m engaged to get married on the onset of the -ber months next year. *Insert unceasing silent squealing*
I count by the months and can’t wait to count by the weeks and eventually by the days – not just because I’m marrying my best friend, the man of my dreams and all other cheesy things people would describe their fiances but because I genuinely want to begin this surely challenging yet fulfilling rest of our lives together. I can’t wait to pepper our lives with cheer and hope and have children and just… give. But before I came to this conclusion I was asked several questions – from my friends and my personal mulling over the new chapter I’m about to step into.
I recently read an article about the Five Things Every Newly-Engaged Girl Will Get Asked on the Brides Blog.
Due to cultural and moral reasons, only three to four of these questions that are applicable to me.
They are the following in order:
1. When’s the Wedding Date?
2. How did he propose?
and probably when me and the asker seem like we’re getting close enough…
3. Are you going to have kids soon?
I would include another question in between 2 and 3 and it would be “How did you meet?”
Only occasionally do I get a: “Can I see the ring?” (as in the article)
Out of all the questions that I receive, there is one that I believe takes time and a lot of reflecting to answer and that’s:
“How do you know you’re ready?”
Usually, I would hear this certain question asked to couples who have been together for years. Surprisingly, they always answer with a stern and confused “You just know.”
If you’re a frustrated person who desires to know the exact details of this three worded sentence, you would forcefully shake that couple into telling you the real answer. But we too have to understand… they’ve been married for so long that after decisively jumping that bridge to the Merryland of Marriage, Singledom became way too far for them to even describe its silhouette.
Since I’m a few steps closer to that bridge (and I can opt not to cross it), I always feel like I have to defend myself to everyone who asks this question. In a sense, I still need to.
Every time, I’m asked this question, I’m forced to dig deeper and deeper into the recesses of my soul and refine my thoughts through examining my very little experiences and each time I answer… these are the common trails that I see.
Like many couples, we’ve been through a lot in that meager two years together. There was a lot of adjusting, a good number of fights and even more laughter and excitement. Since we got together, he made it known to me that breaking up was not an option (even if secretly, that was my fallback.) But when he said those words, I knew I was in good hands. I was with a man who was not willing to give up and is more than willing to fight for us.
When I was proposed to, I was shaking uncontrollably and couldn’t utter a single word out of shock and thoughtlessness. The only person I saw in that moment was him. That gesture of my boyfriend proposing was when I realized he decided on me for his forever. That very gesture of wanting the commitment impressed me because I know that nowadays commitment is such a feared realm to dwell in.
There was really only one way our relationship was going… It was up to me to decide whether I was willing to take that leap of Faith or doubted our forever together.
Now that I can tick the “Man of my dreams” box from the imaginary list of ‘Things to have before you get married,’ what about… me? Am I really ready to get out of the mother nest and be my own mother in my own nest?
This is when I usually feel like that the belief that those who do get married later in life are justified to be more capable of running a home.
But I beg to differ.
I am a firm believer that while young, it’s a lot easier to adjust and to learn new ways of doing things better everyday. I’ve realized that I’m going to learn mountings of things along the way, I’m going to have lots of questions and I’m also going to screw up… a whole lot! That’s all ok! Like a good friend once told me… you don’t have to have all your ducks in a row. That saying especially goes for marital adjustments, home skills, child rearing and personal achievements.
Ok, so maybe there is no list of prerequisites for an engaged gentleman or a lady to be “ready” for marriage but I believe thoroughly in the desire to learn, that loving foresight of what marriage entails for the gentleman or lady and the willingness to sacrifice.
Even though things can be learned, an environment I desire for my home begins with me. Everyday, I make it a point to reflect and work on some habits or attitudes I have that may be bothersome to my future husband.
It’s only fair. Besides, I love the guy more than myself.
Why is NOW the right time?
Oh gosh, they say that the timing is always just right. Well I can’t say I wholeheartedly believed that saying to begin with.
I definitely didn’t think I was ready at all.
Just imagine, you’re a 23-year-old not a girl not yet a woman. You’re only wading in the pond of the professional world and only getting tastes of the ‘real world.’ You’ve got your dreams of studying this and that and wanting to get to know this and that hobby. You’re traveling with your friends and just enjoying. You’re in a great relationship with a wonderful man and one fine day, he went down on one knee with his starry eyes looking at you. He presented this sparkly ring. With all the beauty of that moment, it was just that, THAT moment.
After all that… I was on my own.
I was angry that nobody gave me a heads up that I would be all alone on this. It translated to that real sinking feeling of “Now, what?” – a confusion of many if not all engaged girls.
Thankfully, I don’t look to myself to find the answer to that question. I leave it up to God.
Soon enough, this was answered by many essential life experiences that just happened one after the other. I don’t mean to put too much meaning to the happenings but these have been very personal experiences that are both terrifying and struggling. But I know each one of them has and is shaping me and my fiance to become the people we should be for marriage.
To summarize the answer to the question: “How do you know you’re ready for marriage?” – everyday, I’m made to be more ready for marriage.
…with a lot of guidance from above and a dash of loving willingness.