You know love. You know in your heart you know love. Because today, you’ve found your one. But the journey to him wasn’t always easy. You know love, partly because you’ve endured so much sorrow.
You’ve felt the desperation of disappointment after disappointment. You’ve heard the earth-shattering patter of feet walking away, the numbing silence of no more good morning texts, and the words of hope from dear friends after status updates on the grand social stage. Too many times to count, you’ve said hello and goodbye. And too many times, you’ve sat crying on lonely, cold floors trying desperately to stitch yourself back together, mending the gaping wounds that bled pain. You’ve felt unworthy, wronged, cheated.
You’ve also sat on the other side, throwing daggers at destined souls and past lovers. At the time, you didn’t care or couldn’t care. Perhaps you were lost in the vapid emptiness of too many heartbreaks and couldn’t see your way out. Or maybe that last knife cut so deep into your heart, you finally decided to lock all your love away. Sometimes, the indifference, the not caring, the casual fling, the nothing more than friends is easier to wear than your true heart’s desire— a real, passionate connection with a soul who sings your song.
But a sparkle of light prevailed when you met him. A glimmer of excitement surfaced when riveting debates ended in belly-aching laughs and joyful tears. A familiar beat skipped when he serenaded you with words that spoke to all the love you had cultivated within yourself. But words were never enough.
It was in his eyes. The way he beamed like a peacock with chest-puffing pride to have your radiance by his side. It was in his touch. The way he caressed you like a delicate and sacred rose, adoring every part of your unique feminine being. It was in his heart. The way he served you toast and coffee in bed after too many failed attempts at your favorite tomato and feta omelette. So when life knocked you down and he showed up to carry you home, a soft knowing finally whispered ‘open your heart’.
You stepped into this love, slowly. He waited, patiently. Even when you wiped the masks off your face, undressed your heart, showed him the scars underneath your skin, and exposed all your rough edges, he stood there and uttered— ‘I see you, you are beautiful’. Because of all of this, you trusted him. And then one day, you knew. He was your one.
Together you’ve already dreamed up a beautiful life. Perhaps you’ve made plans to cross oceans, climb the highest peaks or sample all the pies in Italy. Maybe you’ve built a nest with room for four-legged fur babies or planning to grow your pack with the two-legged mini-me kind. Or maybe you’ve sold everything off to travel the world or rewild your life amongst wise trees where fresh air is no longer a luxury. You know love because you are living your greatest love.
So why now should a ring on your finger become conditional to your happiness and fulfillment in this relationship? Why must your love be binding to be real?
To any girl that feels over-the-moon happy with all that she has by her side, stay there. And in your moments of doubt, when family or acquaintances ask you ‘when are you getting married?’ too many times to count, when societal expectations rob you of enjoying this present moment because you’ve been dating for over a year, or nearing your 30s, 40s or 50s, whatever. When everyone one around you is hosting grand marital soirees and you wonder if life is passing you by, read this:
I do not need a ring on my finger
to know that the beat of his heart
will never belong to anyone else
I do not need to wear a white dress
for him to sail across a turbulent sea
to be by my side if I called his name
I do not need to host a big fancy party
to the show the world that my heart
belongs in the safety of his hands
I will never require autographed cardstock
to trust that when I fall and fail
he will be there to carry me home
I will never require a sparkly rock
to remember that he has chosen me
because the passion in his kiss shines brighter
I will never require the blessing of a priest
to legitimize our souls’ meeting or
to sanctify a love that was born sacred
Reciting lines for an audience will never outdo
the moments of pure silence
when our eyes gaze and our energy speaks
Our number of years on this earth
can never define the timing or ways
in which we ooze this connection
Giving up my family name will never guarantee
that we’ll survive the turbulence that is life
or that we’ll dance our first dance forever
If our promise is for a lifetime
Why should we rush down an aisle
To settle check-box expectations
That should not and could not
Make this love any truer
Than it already is?
Marriage is beautiful
But so is knowing that I don’t need it
To validate the love I have with you.