My girl friends and I have been talking about our dreams, one of those dreams being far-off marriages. While we are very young and understand that marriage and family are a long time coming, we're still able to dream about it, the ups and downs, the beauty and pain, the creation of a new existence. But even more, for me, it gives me the forum to explore an idea that, quite frankly, terrifies me.
Despite my nearly twenty years on this planet, I am painfully shy and innocent when it comes to romance. I've only had one boyfriend, but we were very young and long-distance at that, so it never really developed beyond the very beginning stages of looks, smiles, and flirty behavior. I've had some bad experiences in the past and have had facts about myself that I've had to come to terms with. I'm also a devout Catholic and kept myself quite sheltered on purpose throughout my teen years, arrested in a state of naivete up until my first year of college. Furthermore, I keep myself very busy and I would also be worried about ruining friendships.
To be truly honest, the idea of being vulnerable, dropping my mask, and allowing someone into my soul scares me more than the fires of Hell itself. As the great poet (and fellow Florentine) Dante Alighieri once said, "Love is quickly caught in the gentle heart." He said this in his canto about lust, meaning that love can very easily get you burned. I am afraid of losing myself, of disappearing into the person I love, only to find that they themselves have disappeared. I am afraid they'd expect me to abandon who I was, that I'd be demanded to disappear. I'm afraid of being used. Most importantly, I do not want to lose control.
I've finally realized that it's all OK. I'm not financially or emotionally ready for something as great as marriage and to be honest, I have no time to fall in love. I feel like women especially have this competitive streak with all of this but I wonder why competition is necessary? Not all of us are ready, a good deal of us don't have experience, and most of the guys our age are immature anyway. As for the argument about our circadian rhythms, I firmly believe it will all happen in its own time (and if I marry at an age too late for bio children, I will adopt older ones, who tend to get forgotten about). Why are we rushing? Why do we go after people who are not good for us, only to have someone? Why is it a big deal if we're twenty years old and have never been kissed?
I now understand the reasoning behind most of my fears. I'm finally OK with it. I don't have to marry tomorrow and I'll know it's right when it's right. I'm enjoying where I am now, in this moment, hanging out with my girl friends and living in a glorious city. At the same time, I do hope to get to that point, where I can invite someone to share souls. I dream of the day I unite myself with someone and take part in the greatest mysteries behind human existence and the inner workings of the human heart. Until then, I live as the person I am, single, free, young, and innocent. The time will come and right now, it's not time yet.