Jamie's Thoughts in Words

MY MARRIED LIFE AT 21: A Personal Response to 23 Things To Do Instead of Getting Married at 23

MAY 2012: My 20th birthday, we’d been dating for almost 2 months. But nothing was official… yet.

WordPressers Making a Splash: January Edition featured the post 23 Things To Do Instead of Getting Married at 23 by Vanessa at Wander Onwards amongst other brilliant posts that went viral at the turn of this year. So this is my god honest situation and the story so far.In January 2012 I came out of a year and a half long relationship. At the time it was meant to be a ‘break’ and we all know how that goes; we were young (well, young-er) and been through heaven and hell together. Shouting among streetlights late at night from either side of an empty road, make up running down the face which doesn’t really make a difference on the, since a few hours ago, totally boozed up complexion. It’s the start of 2012, a New Year, and the days are slowly getting longer, brighter. In hindsight, life was all very dramatic at 19. But it was the very last of my teenage years, so I would have made the most of my bittersweet moments, right? The darker months, strangely always before I turned 20, seemed especially destructive. As soon as the days got shorter, darker, colder- my mood mirrored that image. I could smile and be merry as the daylight shone upon my face but as the night crept in the bad feelings took over. I almost feel ashamed thinking of it now, I had no control. How could I have had no control? My brain went into overdrive as my body became numb. At night I was always anxious and thinking of reasons to have a break from the one stable thing in my life. I tried to shake it up, I wanted to breath. So we decided on a break, which immediately turned into a breakup. There I was- FREE. I was single, the days were getting brighter and I was dancing around in my bedroom with my iPod on full blast at night, working in Topshop during the day. Then I met him. Countless of relationships and infatuations before him yet somehow this was new. We just clicked. We worked together when we started dating but as I always been one to keep my work and social life separate, I quit my job. I was in love and I was happy. After merely six months I got pregnant and we had Maximus, our everything, in June 2013. It all happened so quickly. Have I felt that destructive anxiousness? No. Am I as happy and in love today as when we first met? Yes. Honestly? Even more so. Being pregnant was not a special skill of mine, I was not very good at it. As much as I loved having a life growing inside of me, all the tidbits that come with being pregnant I could have done without. I found it very hard and as much of an emotional roller-coaster ‘they’ tell you that it’s going to be; nothing could have prepared me for it. I could be a bitch at times. A proper bitch. But I was also loved. I was loved by someone who I can look at and just know. Now I know that someone who can handle me through pregnancy and through the first year of our child’s life- if we made it through that, anything else will be a piece of cake. So what’s the next step? Getting married. Or so we keep being told. Encouraged. It’s not that we are discouraged and it’s obviously a topic me and my partner have been through so many times we know it like the back of our hands. Just last week a lengthy conversation with a future parent-in-law was for the’s time steering towards the subject of getting married. We are 21, we are young, we do think of what’s best for our son, what is best for us as a family and we do love each other. During 2013, countless of ‘friends’ on Facebook have gotten engaged and married, the majority under the age of 25. It’s true that sometimes when I see this, a microscopic amount of my well knows ‘anxiousness’ creeps out; They just got married, have they got a child? no. Do they love each other more than me and Bobby? More isn’t possible, maybe the same. Are they more mature than us? Have they achieved everything they want to in life and are ‘ready’ and we’re not? AND THERE ARE THE MAGIC WORDS. Let’s try saying them again- Have they achieved everything the want to in life? Most likely not. Both Bobby and I have dreams. We are hard workers in our nature and if we’re passionate about something, there’s no stopping us. He is the philosopher, the thinker and self-improver. The solution finder and logical thinker. I am the creative mind, the talker (sometimes not always the best of traits!), the one to constantly want to do things- preferably yesterday! We compliment each other and we know it, we can feel it and others can see it. So naturally, the question of the ‘next step for you two’ and marriage is a constant debate. It’s not that we’re against it, we would both very much love to get married (to each other actually, I might add!) but not now. The ‘not now’ isn’t to say that if he came into the kitchen as I’m writing this and got down on one knee within the next fifteen minutes I wouldn’t say yes, because I would, in a heartbeat. BUT we are not in a hurry. We have so much we like to do in our lives and having our son is one of them, so know we can focus on the rest. We want to travel and experience new cultures, way of life, meet people and learn from others. grow within ourselves and alongside each other. And we want to do this together. In this post I am writing down my thoughts fueled by Vanessa from Wander Onwards. Her post is geared towards the fact that she’s 22 and ‘single as fuck’, how more and more people in the world and on The Facebook is getting married and ‘settling down’ before they reach 23. She bluntly names them ‘cop-outs’. Even though the post might be geared towards me depending on what happens within the next two years of my life, It made me laugh. It’s refreshing, a breath of fresh air and even though the words are written from a totally different perspective of mine- I was smiling throughout as I was reading her words. I wouldn’t call it reassurance, and as I said me and Vanessa are in totally different situations (mine, which might to the untrained eye, call for more drastic inventions!), but I get it. We are not in a hurry. Me and Bobby want to live together, sure. I mean live, as in really LIVE, experience all that life has to offer and we want to do that  together- married or not. And besides, we can’t forget that if I were to get married I want it done my way- I want the sandy beach, the fairy lights, the old barn, the big dress, the blue shoes… And quite frankly, I’m not able to have that now. So I’d rather wait. I’d rather not get married in the next few years. I’d rather only get married once. I will marry the father of my child but not today, not tomorrow and not in the next few years. What I liked most about Vanessa’s piece, and where I felt supported (even though, again, we’re in completely opposite situations and her post didn’t particularly cater for mine) was:

I can’t help but feel like a lot of these unions are a cop-out. It is a way for young people to hide behind a significant other instead of dealing with life’s highs and lows on their own. It’s a safety blanket. It’s an admission that the world is just too big and scary to deal with it on your own; thus, you now have someone that is legally obligated to support you till one of you dies or files for divorce. Which could be tomorrow, because the LGTBQ community isn’t ruining the sanctity of marriage, the Kardashian family is. If your love is truly eternal, what’s the rush? If it’s real, that person will continue to be committed to you 2 months from now, 2 years from now, and 2 decades from now. Grow, learn, travel, party, cuddle, read, explore. Do. Freaking. Something… other than “settle down” at 23 with a white picket fence.

So, married life before 23? NO. Then again, we are passionate about each other… So I guess there’s nothing stopping us. Image

At Kings Cross Station, first time apart, June 2012//July-August, 2012// Pregnant Christmas and strolling around London//Our Max, December 2013



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