19-year-old bride. NINETEEN-year-old bride.
Young, naive, in love, stupid. As I’ve been home planning my wedding these past few months I have learned that getting married young is not socially acceptable. Not at all. I have been teased about how I “must be pregnant” or I’m “just in it for the sex.” I have heard the whispering voices say, “there’s no way she’s ready”, “it will never last”, “they’re rushing into it, wait until the honeymoon stage leaves.” And I have cried. I have silently begged for the support and love of those around me, wishing that my happiness was good enough. I have sought after the approval of countless people who don’t matter. Strangers. And I have learned. I have learned that none of that is important. Those people who talk? They’re forgetting a few things
They have forgotten that being in love is NOT stupid. It is scary. It means being vulnerable. It means putting someone else’s needs in front of yours while remembering that you deserve respect, kindness, and, yes, love. It is beautiful.
They have forgotten that being young does not mean naive.
They have forgotten that it is okay to not know everything. I have no idea how to change a tire on my car. If you gave me all the ingredients, I would never be able to turn them into a pie without at least calling my mom. I don’t know all the tips and tricks to grocery shopping with coupons and I surely don’t know how to be a perfect wife but, boy, I am excited to learn. Even more? I’m excited to learn with my spouse.
Being married is not about being ready. If it was, none of us would ever reach that step. I don’t believe anyone is ever completely ready for a life change this big, and that’s okay. To me, it’s about so much more. As I picture my future with Colin let me assure you, it is not all roses and sunshine. I am completely aware that it is not an IF we hit hardships, it is a WHEN. They will come and they will test our love, our strength, our marriage. They will be scary. At times, it will be rocky. We will have to remember our decision, our commitment, to stand strong as the boat rocks, and each surrounding force tries to push us overseas. I am and will continue to use everything I have, to keep from falling overboard. I am determined to never forget the little things. The butterflies I felt when he first grabbed my hand, and the sparks that exploded from my chest when he said I love you. I refuse to become “comfortable.” Comfort means there is no growth, and marriage is about growing together. So, you better believe me when I say I am going to do everything in my power to keep challenging our relationship, to continue finding new ways to show my appreciation, to remember that Colin’s snoring is not a reason to be upset and my hangriness is not his fault.
And to all you young brides? Quit thinking you need permission to be happy. Those dreams you have of exploring the world while young, of kissing in the middle of cooking as dinner burns on the stove, of dying old and in love? Make them happen. Fight for them. Don’t you dare let your spark die. Don’t you dare believe for a second that those whispering voices are right.
This article originally appeared at DB to Smelcer.