Life & Stuff · Updates

We got engaged!

As you’ve read from the title, Patrick and I are engaged! It was a complete surprise for me and done in the perfect way for us. Nothing too showy but all the sentiment and us-ness that there could have been!

There was no way I would have said no. I broke down crying, felt sick and couldn’t get my words out because I’m scared of commitment, not of him…

Without getting too personal, because it’s our business, but Patrick is perfect. Imperfect like everyone else, but perfect as a partner.

He’s supportive of everything I do. He listens so well. He cares for my family as well as his own. He tries things I like and has become delightfully more nerdy since being with me! He’s my cheerleader and my shoulder to cry on. He has pushed himself to grow with taking up a new sport and reading more and learning about money. He’s always making people laugh, even with awful jokes. And he’s the Yin to my Yang in that we are both whole, wonderful people but we each bring something to the relationship that the other needs. We complement one another. We are a brilliant team.

He is my best friend…

What engagement means for me

Being engaged feels weird. It’s simultaneously terrifying and beautiful. We love the whole fiancé this and fiancé that. It’s a wonderful and predictable milestone for our relationship, now that we’ve been together for 6 years in January.

For me personally, engagement is enough. It’s an amazing step in our relationship; one up from “boyfriend/girlfriend” and step down from the terrifying “MARRIAGE!”

I’d totally choose to be “forever engaged” if I could. Or to have a long engagement that we only change once the moment calls to us. As in, no crazy rush of wedding plans and dates just because we got engaged. To just let the engagement be the wonderful thing that it is for now and not plan to change our status again just yet.

Patrick is more traditional. He’s always wanted to be married and it’s only taken so long because of my thoughts about it. He’s very much husband material! He’s father material! But me, I dunno…

Marriage?

I come from a family of weird marriages. My mom and dad got divorced before he died years later. Their divorce was rushed. Their relationship was flawed. My aunt is still with her life partner after over forty-something years and never being married. My older cousins have children and long-term partners with no marriages in sight. My brother got married last year and that was unexpected. The only real, beautiful display of marriage from my life are my grandparents. They’ve been married over fifty years! They’re an amazing couple, who do remind me of myself and Patrick at times.

So, what do I think about marriage?

I don’t know, is the truth. I have mixed feelings. It’s beautiful, it’s traditional; it can feel like the natural thing to do. The “normal” thing to do. But it’s also very serious and many marriages end badly. That’s scary. I don’t want to fight and tear each other apart financially and emotionally. I don’t want to feel trapped in it…

No, it’s not just marriage that makes me feel this way. Anyone who reads all of my posts or knows me personally must know by now that I am a commitment-phobe. I’m afraid of all forms of commitment: to a job, a house, a partner, a university degree, a hairstyle…

Long-term commitments make me freak out and want to escape…

Thoughts and feelings as of now…

I feel emotionally exhausted. Not just because of the engagement anxiety but also the festivities of Christmas as a whole, the exhaustion from work, the stress/fears of changes at work, having to move house again and university assignments. Everything adult!!

I feel a lot of fear for next year because of everyone else, not us. I know Patrick has my back. That he would never force me to do anything I didn’t want to do or wasn’t ready for. It’s more his family pressures that I worry about. I don’t want to be told what to do or feel like I’m letting everyone down for not following their expectations.

And lastly, there are a lot of conversations to be had in the coming months. Whether we will have a long engagement or not. How big the ceremony will be. Who will be there. Where we’ll have it. The biggest problem is my name. I don’t want to be Mrs Kuduwa! It doesn’t feel right. Doesn’t feel like me. I could easily just keep my own name, but I also hate the idea of my kids having a different surname to me…So that’s a hard decision for me to make.

All in all…

I feel like it’s right. It’s sort of bad timing because I feel stressed and overwhelmed by my job, house and university right now, too. So my head isn’t clear and my anxiety is high anyway. I want to be solely happy and smitten, but my head is heavy and I’m so tired that it steals me away at times. I feel so sad about that and angry that I’ve cried a lot and Patrick has had to comfort me. But luckily, he knows the woman he wants to marry and chose to propose regardless of my fears and faults. That’s how you know you’ve found the one…

His friends asked him how he knows it’s the right time/person. He said that it’s because the things they do, no matter what it is, don’t bother you at all and you don’t stop loving them.

How lucky am I?

Sincerely,

S. xx

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