Bella sits on her childhood bed, in her childhood room, her childhood house, it’s the last night she will sleep here. A wedding between a human and a vampire. I watched this again just recently, after watching it years ago in the cinemas, and I remembered how Bella felt, and how it was for me before my wedding day.
I want to talk about what it is like to get married when you have never lived together before. What it’s like to be married at 18, when you’ve literally just been allowed to go out clubbing, and when you’ve only been driving for about a year, when you only left school a second ago. I loved going out and responding to guys, “Sorry I’m here with my husband” and flashing my ring. No one believed me!
Most people say you shouldn’t get married at 18, or 19, 20, 21, 22, etc. Plenty of people advocate the reasons for this, but not many people tell you the really cool parts of getting married in the younger years. So I’m going to tell you what I have experienced as the great parts of it. I want young people who are in healthy relationships, who are in love, to not feel like, marriage is unacceptable until we are older, till we have more money, till we live together, till we buy a house, till we travel.
Guess what? You can travel as husband and wife! (In fact we as a married couple have traveled to far more places than most single people). You can live on a small income as a husband and wife! You can buy a house later!
You don’t have to “find yourself” before you commit to the one you love. I’m a different person, doing different things every 5 years, even if hypothetically, I “found myself” backpacking around Europe, and South America when I was 22, there is no way that that would be me when I was 30 and having children. You are continually “finding yourself”, and cause I’m a Christian I actually think it’s more “finding Jesus” and what he wants me to do. Cause ‘finding yourself” just seems a bit too self orientated.
I grew up WITH my husband, instead of us growing up in separate lives, making separate plans, having separate experiences. We learnt things together, we traveled together, we were broke together, rich together, sick together, and made mistakes together. And what I think is the greatest, is, we dreamed together. We dreamed our life into fruition, we talked about what we wanted, and when it changed, we talked about that too. So when we eventually set ourselves to a path, we are both on the same page, heading the same way. We are accustomed to adapting with each other, something your better at the younger you are. The older you are, the less you put up with, the less your flexible, you get used to YOUR routine.
When you get married young, you develop a routine that includes the both of you, and it sets in more and more as you age. Your cementing yourselves together in those early, flexible, younger years. Becoming one, instead of two.
We live in an age where women are told we need to be strong on our own, have our own money, be independent of men. How dare we be dependent on them! We can just live with them, and have sex with them, but we could do it all on our own just as good. Right?
In marriage we are dependent on them, and they are dependent on us. How else would it work? We need to rely on each other, and work together. I fail all the time, obviously, but I keep working at it.
Bella sits in her room and looks around at all her things packed up in boxes, things she will take with her to her new home with Edward. She is leaving the covering of her father to the covering of her husband. This may sound so old fashion to everyone now, and some may say patriarchal! But this is what I am talking about, I need my husband, he does look after me in the protective role, just as Edward would die for Bella, just as men should always open the door for a woman, and give them their jackets when it is cold. I give my husband the things he needs also, and he needs me just as much as I need him.
In one sense, everyday I have had someone looking after me. This is actually a really beautiful thing.
On the day of my wedding, I woke up in my single bed, which is actually an ancient, metal, hospital bed frame, which my mum fixed up for me on my tenth birthday. I wished I had realized more the significance of getting up out of that bed that morning, but there was too many things on my mind. I wish I had just stayed in that room for a few minutes and said a proper goodbye. I was leaving home that day for the first time, I was getting married, I was making a huge leap all in the space of a day. Not many people do that anymore. For us the wedding was more than a piece of paper to take back to the house, and life we had already been sharing together, our whole lives changed that day.
I had breakfast with my Mum, Dad, sister, who was my maid of honour at 16 yrs old, and my brother, a groomsmen at 14. We were the youngest bridal party, all 9 of us under the age of 21!
Adrian and I did not know everything when we married, we still don’t. I earned $11.50 an hour, Adrian $9.80 an hour (apprentice wage), when we married. We lived in a very uncool, orange themed unit, in the industrial part of town. Bonus was, you could go into town, drink, and walk home. We owned a hideous old Ford falcon, which cost $1000, and I remember crying in the shower when we got our first electricity bill. But it was the best, I finally had Adrian all to myself, every night I slept with him next to me. Once upon a time he had to keep dropping me home at some point in the early morning hours, cause we’d fallen asleep and I wasn’t allowed to stay the night. I kept saying, “Well if you just asked me to marry you, these 1am drop offs wouldn’t have to occur”. I will admit though I cried a little, for a few nights after the wedding, laying in my orange themed unit. I missed my mum and dad! I love them, and I think they cried too, I was still a teenager!
Bella and Edward hadn’t even had sex until after their wedding either, so really the twilight series is rather traditional isn’t it?
So now 10 years later, almost every memory has Adrian in it, every first, every high, every low. I still feel like I am 18 with Adrian, perhaps we will be immortal in each others eyes forever, just like Bella and Edward.