You spend your entire adolescent life a prisoner in your own mind, sharing it with mathematics, biology, chemistry etc. in hopes that you might get the grades you need to get into the university you chose where again you will be leasing space in your mind to other subjects, in preparation for what is to come. After the education phase comes the application phase, whereby you take the knowledge that has been instilled into your brain and apply it in a professional manner i.e., getting a job. You start at the bottom and scrape, scratch and claw your way to the top, and just when you feel like you have life all figured out, where you are finally able to strike the balance between work and social life, between income and expense, between diet and cheat days, you meet her. And once again you find yourself heading toward unfamiliar territories on a journey that will last for the rest of your life.
As someone who is getting married this month (April 10 to be exact, provided no cold feet occur on either end!) the question of why do people chose marriage continues to discombobulate me.
Some say it is the ultimate act of love. I say a card from Hallmark attached to a nice gift is a pretty solid gesture as well!
Others say it is a duty. I say, so is your job but you do not stay there all day long!
Consider the following (comical, exaggerated i.e., pleasedonotshowthistoher!) thought process; from a male’s perspective; this person is going to be my responsibility! I have to buy them food, put a roof over their head, and buy them pretty clothes (and lots and lots of shoes). It is like I have adopted a child!
From a female’s perspective; I have to cook, clean, iron, wash for this person. Not to mention feed them and try to instill a little fashion sense into their primitive brain. It is like I have adopted a child!
However, the actual thought process should be, thank God I found you (as opposed to the instinctual why are you here?).
It is human nature to approach any new endeavor with trepidation and speculation. How else do we deal with ambiguity? We make provisions; we try as much as possible, within our own (limited) understanding, to plan everything out. We delve into our experience and try to find the most acceptable scenario to incorporate when approaching the unknown.
No matter how many people you have spoken to, stories you have read, movies you have watched or scenarios you have dreamt up, nothing will ever prepare you for the real thing. A marriage is dynamic, always evolving and always based on the mindsets of the couple within. No two scenarios can be the same 100 percent. And that is OK.
What most people fail to realize in marriage is that the planning is now being done by two – and two heads are always better than one (unless they are on the same body, then maybe not so much). For the first time in your life, you do not need to have all the answers! Think of it as taking an exam with someone sitting right beside you, discussing the questions with you and helping you reach the correct answer.
As they say, no two people are exactly the same and thus no two marriages are exactly the same. You will never be able to plan a contingency for every curve-ball life decides to throw your way. The only thing you can do is trust that the person by your side will be there and that you will both get through it.
Spring is in the air and with it comes the bellowing winds of change. So go ahead, take that leap of faith into the waters of marriage. Even if you do not know how to swim, trust that your partner does (it may be prudent to ask them first!).