My Updated Thoughts on Marriage Circa 2010

Marriage.  I just read an essay that I wrote almost exactly four years ago, back in 2006, the year of our lord, on the topic of marriage.  Here is what I learned~ I can be very convincing when I want something.  I’m gonna publish it on my blog, so you can see what a simultaneously naïve and wise twenty six year old I was.  I think it can be problematic when we try to convince ourselves of the illusory permanence of life.  This just in~ Life is everything BUT permanent.  Everything.  But.  Permanent.  I gushed on about this fantastical phenomenon called forever with a man named Eric who is now but a wistful wake of light in my grasping mind and my nostalgic heart.

Marriage.  It’s on my mind because of the book I’m reading, Commitment, by Elizabeth Gilbert.  Not because I care heavily one way or the other about marriage right now.  I suppose I do… but not with any immediacy.  My life is too tremulous and delicate right now to indulge in such binding future concepts as marriage.  With any seriousness, I mean… I am allowed to talk about it and turn it over and over and over in my mind, as I fancy to do…  But urgency and desire are not burning a hole in my female self, as they once did in the name of this glistening mirage of a topic.

I have an embarrassing confession to make.  (What is it about embarrassing confessions that I simultaneously relish and detest?)  Last august, that naïve little would be Disney princess in me was expelling her requisite song and dance about “when are you gonna ask me to marry you?!!???”… to my new (and improved?) partner.  She started up her relentless din not too long after we got together, and after we completed the first year together, she felt justified to let her voice out at full volume.  Yes, “she” is me… but also she is not me.  This is why I refer to her in the third person.  Because as I sit here on a Monday morning in Gaylord’s Café on Piedmont Avenue, rocking out to Michael Jackson, Thriller, and expunging the bottomless recesses of my brilliant, churning, ever-hungry mind, this fantasy worshipping little girl must be off playing Barbies in the sandbox, because she is certainly not driving this conversation.

But anyway, back to my confession.  Last august, I was harassing Mykael for not having proposed to me yet… My favorite thing to say was, “If ya like it then ya shoulda puta ring on it”… you know, the Beyonce song.  Damn, I got a lot of mileage out of that stupid song… which is ironic, because I can’t even listen to the actual song all the way through, I find it so abrasive.  During one of these high pressure sales moments, I managed to get Mykael to commit to proposing to me within six months.  That meant by the end of February, 2010!  I was thrilled, although six months felt like eternity manifest.  Within those six months, our lives really came undone, and I schizophrenically bounced all around in my desires and life vision.  (Saturn will do that to ya…)  One night, I even begged him NOT to ask me to marry him, because I was feeling so cynical of the institution.  But nonetheless (my favorite word!) when February rolled around, I couldn’t help but let myself be swept away by another current of fantasy and romance.  He had given his word, after all.  And in the face of all the chaos we were wading through together, what BETTER to divert and distract and make right than the epically romantic act of engagement.

On February twenty sixth, I began to flood with doubt, disappointment and even panic.  Have you ever noticed that when the hour glass is nearly empty, the sand begins to move at warp speed?  What a magnificent excuse to feel one of my all time favorite emotions, devastation!   I pouted a bunch before confronting him with a tremulous voice and an even more tremulous bottom lip.  All hands on deck!  Storm the gates!  This calls for broken heart inspired attack on the man called Mykael!  He was confused.  “Just last month, you were begging me not to ask you…”  He could not keep up with my female brain, my nomadic tidal waves of desire.  Jerk.  (Just kidding… although I’m sure I called him worse in the hot moments of confrontation.)  Turns out he wasn’t feeling nearly solid enough as a man to even consider proposing to me.  I hated to hear this, to feel this.  I fell into a pitch black pit of disappointment over this for about a week.  After that, the disappointment lightened and sobered up slowly, over time.  Since then, I have pilgrimaged all over the blessed map, from a staunch conviction to exit the relationship, to moments of eternal, gushing devotion and back again.  But today, and most days recently, there is something very sober who is driving the vision of my life.

It’s about time, sheesh!  Thank God.  Do I want to get married?  Sort of… Maybe.  Sometimes.  I do want a child.  Does that mean we should get married?  Shrug.  On one hand marriage seems like binding yourself to this appendage, and then having to exert a lot of extra energy dragging it around for the rest of your life, despite the fact that your growth patterns will inevitably not always match.  But on the flip side, since evidence sings that in essence, all men are retarded assholes, there’s really no point in wasting my life trying to find a “better” one.  So it could be a profound experience to commit to digging the worlds deepest well with another human being.  Think of how well you could get to know someone, sharing the same little jail cell with them for your entire life.  Just kidding.  Life is not a jail cell.  It just feels like it to me sometimes.   What I am coming to realize after thirty trips around the sun, is that you just never know about life.  It is such a long, mercurial, mysterious journey.  Only God knows who I will be at forty, fifty, ninety years old.  The only thing that doesn’t change is the essence of the essence of the essence of the essence of it all, which I fancy calling “God”… but please, by all means, call it Spirit, Creator, Jah, All Pervading Light, the Mystery, Love… Call it what you like, but it still don’t change.

Will marriage bring me closer to God?  I wish I could just slap a quick yes on that question, toss it on the shelf to pickle and get on with my affairs… but that would be lazy and wishful at best.  What is this part of me that won’t let go of the shimmering concept of marriage?  Maybe I just want to be like every-fuckin-body else… Can’t I just lead a “normal” life and be done with it?  But fortunately, the immediate answer is NO.

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