You know, the #1 thing I have heard since my engagement and marriage is: “You’re so young! How do you know what you’re doing?!” And this question always makes me smile in a sick, “Em, you shouldn’t smile” kind of way. Why?
First, let me be absolutely and utterly, completely and irrevocably, BLUNT. Here is the great truth I and all the other young military wives don’t say: by the time you find your “one and only” at 26, and marry at 28 because that was the “right time” (what even is a right time? honestly, now), the girls and I who married our boys at 18 could be widows. We could have been widows even 4 years before we’re 28 years old. And here you are, shocked at my callousness. But it’s true.
I, as a woman, as a wife, as a person, am so sick of hearing about everyone’s opinions on me being married at 18, and my husband at 20. Yes, congratulations, you noticed, we’re young. Would you like an award? “Getting married young is like leaving the party before it starts!” Uh, no? Getting married to my best friend in the entire world is like turning my whole life into a party. Unfortunately for you, you’re not invited, because I’ve got my party partner and he’s all I want anyway. But, in all seriousness, I feel almost sorry for the people who don’t find their soulmate until later in life. I found mine at 14 years old, and by the time I’m 28, I will have spent half my life with my best friend. I pity the people who don’t get that. It is the most wonderful feeling to love someone wholeheartedly and not worry about whether or not they love you back. It is unspoken in the air. “I love you” is said in so many ways between the two of us. It’s what I mean when I say “put your seatbelt on.” It’s what he means when he says, “I think you’re working too much. Take care of yourself.” And to have that type of love for the majority of my life is such a BLESSING from God. Have I missed out on experiences because we found each other so young? I don’t think so. I have no desire to party all night, or go on dates with men whose names I can’t remember, or worry about what I look like all the time. I married my best friend at 18, and we go on dates, and I usually remember his name, and Lord knows I am a MESS in the morning, and he’s not bothered by it one bit. Maybe society today needs to stop seeking to wring the “pleasure” out of their youth, and instead open their eyes to what’s around them. You’d be surprised what tumbles across your path. It might just be a curly haired boy who makes you laugh, and loves you so fiercely, you feel like you’ve been lit on fire. But what do I know? I got married at just 18.