First comes love, then comes marriage....right?
Or at least that's what I've been told. You meet someone that you like, then eventually they become someone you love, then it evolves into someone you can't live without and BOOM you get married.
That's how the story has been told and retold to me. Patrick and I have been together for just shy of ten months and I've lost track of how many times I've been asked "Soooo, when are you two getting engaged?"
That sentence and others like it, after awhile, have become a fire that burned its way into my heart and set up a shop of resentment and jealousy inside of me.
Patience, lately, has not been my strongest virtue. I took hold of the lie that the only next step for us was for us to get engaged and anything that didn't quench that desire wasn't good enough. Irritable is a word that could have floated over my head non-stop. I was irritated, irritated by any conversation and any date that didn't end with me getting one step closer to having a husband.
The truth though, is that marriage is not the next step for Patrick and me.
The next step is for us to grow deeper in our trust and our communication. The next step is for us to celebrate our birthday's and enjoy our first Fall season together. The next step is for us to spend the Holiday's with each other's family and learn more about family dynamic and how to exist as a unit bound to so many other units.
The next step is for me to not be so connected to the way that I think a relationship is supposed to play out and open my eyes to the beauty of how my relationship is evolving.
So yes, we are going to get married. Yes, we are going to have a beautiful wedding and start a life together and have a ton of kids. Yes, it's something that we talk about but no, it's definitely not happening today and it won't happen tomorrow.
Marriage is in our future and is one of the goals of our relationship but it's not our only goal.
Let patience be the virtue that we all cling to in this season. Today, the burning in my ring finger has begun to cease as I realize that the title of 'Girlfriend' is not a scarlet letter and after only ten months, in my first ever relationship, is exactly where I want to be. So please let me enjoy time with my boyfriend in this beautiful season that we're in and when we get engaged, believe me, you'll be the first to know.
"When we are so eager for the next season, we believe the lie that the next season will bring some added level of completeness or perfection. But with God, we're never incomplete and never lacking in His holy perfection. We are only stretched to grow. And we can flourish in the waiting." - Jordan Dooley.