Do you remember your twentieth birthday?
A giant milestone, marking the start of a decade of exploring and finding yourself. No one expects you to be serious yet. No longer a teenager, you begin writing your own independent, adult chapter. You go to university, change your course three times, get a considerable amount of breakups and hangovers onto your record. Through making good and bad decisions, you learn life.
I made a decision on my twentieth birthday. I said ‘yes’.
When me and my fiancee updated our status on Facebook (as you do, when you’re an adult who gets engaged), it trigerred a range of emotions among our friends.
Half of them congratulated, some thought it was one of those social media pranks. The rest probably just sat there, shaking their heads and thinking how a couple of stupid kids just hopped on a last minute plane to the ‘Ruin your life’ land; alternatively, debating if we’re going to break up in two months, or two minutes.
Why was the response to such an exciting step so varied, you might ask? I think I know the answer.
People who do not know us that well, simply can’t wrap their heads around the fact that high school sweethearts might want to get married before graduating and going through at least five different relationships. They are also, most likely, too close-minded to imagine a possibility of finding your soulmate at the age of 15, when you are still technically wearing diapers.
People who do know us well, have witnessed us falling in love and going through many dangers, toils and snares to get to where we are now. What they’ve seen over those past 5 years, was not ‘yet another teenage infatuation’, but a growing, mature bond between two people. When you have that, age no longer matters.
Most of the backlash we got was probably caused by the omnipresent criticism of young marriages, assaulted by those who shack up and don’t see the point in getting ‘hitched’. I am not willing to attack back by saying that those individuals have clearly never been in love. You can love and not feel the need to sign ‘the piece of paper’.
We don’t NEED to. But we want to.
Marriage, no matter if you’re too young or too old for it, is a celebration of two soulmates bonding indefinitely. You get to exchange vows of eternal love with the Nemo you have found amid plenty other fish in the sea. It’s one of those ‘once in a lifetime’ things (fingers crossed), so why not?
Perhaps those, who still cringe or smile ironically at the sight of my engagement ring, will see us at the altar and realise that calf love either ends within six months or last forever.
We are big cows now and intend to pasture together for the rest of our lives. Deal with it.