Society expects your life to fall in a certain order…to fall in love, get married, have kids, get a house..you get my idea. Most follow those sequence of events and are very happy but what if those life experiences don’t fall quite in that order for you?
I met Shawn almost three years ago and even though we talked marriage within months of being together, I felt that we weren’t quite ready then. I’ve been known to rush through decisions but marriage was an exception I wasn’t the little girl who dreamed of her wedding day or finding her prince charming; Marriage has never been a priority to me so when the choice came to be a mom before being a wife first, I never gave it a second thought; not until i got the many looks to my left ring finger while pregnant. Even worse, was when people felt bad for poor me who hadn’t gotten asked and i was probably waiting anxiously for that ring (not at all the case); It’s when I realized that society, still here in 2012, aren’t truly fine with the idea of baby carriage before marriage.
When Shawn & I became pregnant, pressure started coming around us (even more than before), as people would make hints (subtle and not so subtle sometimes) that we should tie the knot before Adam came. I give Shawn and I a lot of credit for not going along with it, due to the pressure people put on us. We stood our ground that we would love to do it when the timing was right. It wasn’t that we weren’t in a 100% committed relationship; we were and still are (actually i believe we are more committed to each other than most married couples i know of). The right timing hadn’t come for us for a lot of reasons:
I didn’t want to walk down the aisle just because we were about to become parents: To me, that should never be the reason two people get married. I need to not have a single doubt in my mind that the person I’m about to marry is the one I want to be with for the rest of my life. For us, Adam came before that could happen.
Another reason we didn’t go along with is the finances. I love the celebration that is a wedding ceremony however in my opinion, all the money that goes along with one day of celebration isn’t right in my book. I’d rather put that money towards our future (house, savings etc) and have a small, intimate ceremony.
Now as parents, I’m glad that we waited to get married. I know now how supportive of a partner Shawn is and a good father as well. Things that sometimes you can’t know for sure if you get married before having a kid. There’s no doubt in my mind that I’d be more than happy to be with Shawn every single day of my life and not ever regret it. Watching him be the dad that he is to Adam, makes me admire and respect him even more; things that you should feel for the person you are going to say “I do” with.
If you love someone, you want everyone to know it, and people would ask us why wouldn’t we want to promise our love in front of God? Well, my answer to that is that we already do that, God is with us all the time and he knows our hearts and intentions (even before we do). and our commitment now as parents is even deeper . When Adam came into this world we not only promised each other to be by each other’s side through thick and thin but as parents we promised that we would dedicate our lives to loving Adam and raising him to be a good person.
I totally believe in marriage and we plan to do it one day but life shouldn’t be seen as these set of rules and orders that you must follow; because that’s the beauty of life; it surprises you, keeps you at your toes. Those surprises come when the timing is right not when society or religion say so.
Before worrying about getting married, we are more focused on Adam seeing how we respect, love and are supportive towards each other. I believe we are teaching him more about relationships; healthy relationships that way, than showing him pictures of me in a white dress and his father in a tux. Plus having him in our wedding (whenever that might be) would be more special to us. Adam is not the one that holds or keeps us together but he’s the product of our love. After all, what makes a relationship, isn’t marriage or even children, it’s LOVE