Here's to 'Happily ever after.'

"When the time comes for me to fall in love, I hope I love the way I learned to ride a bike. Scared but reckless."

I've idolized love and marriage my entire life. I've thought of it as the ultimate goal, the place where every wrong would be turned right, every tear would have meaning, every sad day would be washed away. I would dream about the dress, walking down the aisle with my dad, my mom crying in the front row..for as long as I can remember all I've ever wanted was to get married.

As I sit here writing this I think it's so insane that so many little girls are raised with marriage in the forefront of their minds. Not necessarily because their parents beat them over the head with the idea but rather because culture and media does. I was raised watching Disney movies and other films that didn't have swearing or sex scenes but almost all ended with a girl meeting some wonderful guy and falling in love and most importantly living happily ever after.

Since I was little I've associated marriage with living happily ever after and who doesn't want living happy to be their goal?

Man, was I way off.

This year I had the honor and the privilege of attending four weddings. It was so cool to see some of my closest friends vow forever to each other in front of their family, their friends and in front of God. I cried, I wore bridesmaid dresses, I danced until my feet were killing me but not once did I think "I wish that was me."

My views on marriage and love have changed so much this year. It has gone from being something that I was striving for and arranging my life in order to get to, to instead being something that's now on the back burner.

Falling in love and getting married will never complete me. It won't. Not today. Not tomorrow. Not next week. Once I learned that undeniable truth, I was able to dive head first into the things that truly bring me peace, completion and so much happiness.

This weekend while I was watching my college roommate get married I was so happy for her. I was genuinely filled to the brim with happiness because I knew that there wasn't even a hint of jealousy in me. It wasn't there because I'm no longer living in this world as half of a person searching for the other parts of me.

I talked to my best friend, who just got married in March, about this topic and she gave me an interesting perspective. She affirmed my feelings that the idea of being incomplete is a turn off but then said that instead of that person completing you think of it as them complimenting you, which I loved.

She also reminded me that God works through the people in our lives and believes that he uses our friends and spouses to help us where we're weak and to build us up where we may be torn down. Just like he used her and this conversation to help me see how marriage is not completion but it's definitely a partnership and an opportunity for two people to grow not only as individuals but together.

The Lord has been working in my heart so much this year and has been pouring his love over me in such a mighty way that it reminds me of how it's impossible for anyone on this earth to love me more than him. I think that the person that I am now could actually be in a healthy and life giving relationship because I'm able to love others from a place of completion compared to scarcity.

So here's to allowing our forever person to compliment us instead of asking them to take on the daunting and assigned to God task of completing us. Here's to happily ever after.

Until next time. Xoxo.