“Is it weird,” she asked, “to see Josh get married when you’re still single?”
“No,” I shrugged. “I’m used to it by now.”
Which is true. I mean, it was weird when she got married. She was the first of the “younger generation” to tie the knot, and she married my baby brother who was certainly not old enough to get married, right? But the next three years have been so full of both bridal and baby showers that I hardly blink at the news that yet another kid is getting married and having kids of their own.
As I sat there watching the bride and groom share their first dance, I pondered my sister-in-law’s question a little deeper. Is this weird? Is it strange to watch Josh—this boy I’ve known all his life—get married?
Yeah. Maybe a little. After all, last time I looked, the kid was about twelve. But is it weird that he’s getting married when I’m still single? No. Not at all.
I don’t expect everyone to wait on me. They could stay waiting forever and, as you all should know by now, waiting is not what I am about.
I watched Josh’s hands dance up and down Maria’s shoulders and wondered (as all good writers do), what if?
What if I was living for this, hoping for this? What if I spent my single years obsessing over the thought of having my turn on the dance floor? Would it be weird then, to witness this moment?
I think, in that case, the answer is yes. Yes, this is weird and hard and decidedly unfair. I’m twenty-five years old; Josh is just a baby.
But I don’t live for him.
Him—the elusive someone who is supposed to come sweeping into my life and become my everything. The someone I’ll wear a white dress for. The someone I’ll devote the rest of my days to.
If I’m going to be honest, I thought I’d be married by twenty-five. As a child, it seemed as good an age as any to start settling down. As an adult it seems sort of like a cruel joke I played on my future self.
That’s right, make plans, Rebekah. It will be so amusing to see how unexpectedly your life actually plays out.
This is perhaps the part of the story where I’m supposed to become angry and jaded and bitter, but that seems to sad of an ending, so I rewrote it. I took this unexpected mess of a life and decided I wanted something different than a fist to shake at heaven.
I wanted something more magical, more unpredictable, more poetic than that.
I wanted a life I could fall in love with.
So I threw myself into my work, and befriended coworkers and customers alike.
I signed a lease and started collecting things to furnish a home of my own.
I filled journals with stories and ideas and words that may or may not be better left unsaid.
I started taking ice skating classes and, you guys, you guys, I am learning how to twirl. (Well, pivot, really, but it’s where the spinning starts… so maybe soon?)
I am trying to be spontaneous and adventurous and vulnerable. I am striving every day to let down my hair.
Would I like to be married? Sure. Maybe one day.
But not at twenty-five. Twenty-five has a different ending in mind for me.
And that’s okay. Different than I once expected, but okay.
Some people say that every girl deserves a man who will treat her well. And maybe they do.
But what I hope that every girl has, regardless of her relationship status, is a life she can fall in love with.
Love your life, darling, and if you don’t, rewrite it.
Make it the kind of life you can be proud of. Make it the kind of life you can find joy in. Make it the kind of life you can fall in love with.
You deserve that.
You really do.