I have been in a long-term committed relationship with my boyfriend for about nine years now. We are not religious and we have no problem getting intimate while we are still unmarried.
I grew up very Christian. With my parents’ nudging, I got involved with the groups within the church from Sunday school to youth camps. And we all know the mantra they drill into every hormonal teenager: true love waits. I have always been pragmatic and held the belief that you cannot stop teenagers from having sex, at least give them the facts and let them protect themselves. So here I am at 27 with no children while a number of girls involved in the church back home have one or more children out of wedlock (and the inevitable shotgun weddings).
I have no problem if others choose to abstain from sex until marriage. Just be goddamn sure that you won’t slip up and bring an unplanned child into the world until you are 100% sure and ready. We have enough problems.
My boyfriend and I are nearing our 30s and despite the incessant questions on when we will be married and have children, we are pretty lukewarm on getting hitched and having children. We can barely afford being adults with bills, we can’t bring in another human being into that.
So here we are.
[Fair warning: there are a lot of bruised arm photos.]
As mentioned in my entry post for this series, when I was younger, I wanted to be married by 26 and have my first kid by 27. Well I am 26 right now and I am not married nor am I pregnant. I have been with my boyfriend for eight years now, and while we have discussed that we want to get married (to each other) someday, that’s not really possible right now.
I met my boyfriend (let’s call him Daniel because that’s his name) back in junior year college. He was in a class with some of my friends while I had that period free. I was hanging around the class because there was this guy I had a crush on (not Daniel) in the class with them. The instructor was really nice though and he let me sit in with the class and even made me participate in the discussions. Of course the guy I liked didn’t give me the time of day, and I was okay with that. I told myself during that phase of my life that I didn’t want a boyfriend. I was having a nice time, I was with my friends and it was my favorite subject.
One day I was sitting with this one friend, whispering to each other and she pointed me to this guy who she thought had a nice smile. I looked over and the guy (it was Daniel this time) did have a nice smile. He was this tall, lanky kid with glasses who looked like a nerd. He always had a Rubik’s cube in hand so he was (still is) most definitely a nerd. But he also always had this really warm smile whenever I saw him. So like a true child of the internet, I stalked him through social media the instant I got home that day. I saw on one of his profiles that he liked this band I also liked so I took the chance and messaged him and we got to talking online almost every day.
I had a hard time starting my career when I got out of college. I have an arts degree and while I did my best not to flunk anything and generally enjoyed college, I wasn’t sure if being an artist was what I wanted to do for the rest of my life.
I’ve always been involved in the arts. Always was one of the creative ones in grade school and high school, always involved in the school paper, always enjoyed arts class. I wasn’t spectacularly talented, just better than most and actually put some effort into it. I really liked writing though. I mean, I still do. But like most aspects of my life, my career was just something I stumbled into, not something I planned for.
I was not able to land a job right after graduating college. I applied to various graphic artist jobs but my portfolio was pitiful. I was lucky that my parents didn’t pressure me into taking a job I didn’t care about. They didn’t expect me to pay them back for anything nor did they expect me to give them a monthly allowance now that they were done paying for my education. I didn’t want to take the call center route, I just knew I would burn out so fast in that sort of job. I tried building my portfolio while I was unemployed but I guess my heart just wasn’t in it. I even tried selling some handmade accessories for a while. That was fun for a bit, but it wasn’t what I wanted to do for the rest of my life.Read More »
When I was younger, I thought I’d have my life together by now.
I’d be earning so much money, living in a condo in the city, and planning to be married by 26, so I can have my first child by 27. I had all these goals but I had no actual plan. I was just winging it.
Present day. I have a job I love, but it’s not something that pays a lot. The career path I chose doesn’t generally paved with the big bucks. I don’t own a condo, and I don’t really want to anymore. I am in a long-term relationship and we do intend to get married, but not in the next couple of years. And I am in no way ready for a child.
Being an adult is so much different than I imagined. I thought I’d be this person so sure of myself and my choices, but yet here I am, fumbling about, making things up as I go along. This makes me appreciate a lot of other adults, they do a good job of keeping it together most of the time. I like to think that we are all just winging it.
This series will be a log of me winging it in different aspects of my life as I go through adulthood. Because no matter how much we want to be the Leslie Knopes of the world with our meticulously curated and color-coded binders, deep down inside we are all April Ludgates counting on our gut feeling to lead us into hopefully good decisions.