People who love me say we’re too young.
In the face of constant dismissal of our relationship from well-wishers, family, and folks we’ve never even met, in the face of denial that it’s anything more than a brief, narcissistic, and short-sighted blip on my romantic life path, I’ve stopped to consider what they really mean.
Approaching five years by your side, I realize how much we’ve both changed. It’s assumed at our age we will continue changing in preferences, income, health, education, and in infinite and surprising ways to boot. It’s assumed by those that care about me that these are the things that will assuredly rip at the fabric of our relationship.
But I refuse to allow people to project their own insecurities and their own definitions of love onto our relationship; one many have never taken the time to look at. While I appreciate the concern, many fail to recognize that their ideas regarding circumstantial stability and superficial factors—about how they will negatively affect a relationship, is both a shallow and fleeting definition of love. I suppose if these factors were what I believed a relationship, (and ultimately a marriage), were based on, maybe I too, would have second thoughts. Because life is in a constant state of flux.
However, emotional support in the face of change, love and support in pursuit of self betterment, or help during loss—an understanding and respect of the other as an individual who is separate and free to pursue a happiness on her own, is what builds a healthy and long-lasting relationship.
These are things that do not change. These are things that persist and even flourish in spite of superficial, or even profound environmental changes. A deep and loving respect for another human, while paired with self confidence, does not change with income, taste, loss, or illness.
You are my life partner, the first one to call me out on my shit, the first one to help me up when I fall, the first to suggest something new, and the only one to consider that we do not have to compromise ourselves for anything or anyone, including you. But there has never been a time I didn’t want you by my side, and there was never a time you weren’t anything but real to me.
For the last five years I’ve grown more independent, self-assured, and confident, and only hope I can continue growing and changing as a person with you by my side.
You are my life partner, the love of my life, my future wife.