Photo by Lydia Harper
Growing up, there was a song we skipped to.
It went along the lines of “when will you marry? January, February, March…”
This song reminds me of how family, acquaintances, and strangers are eager to get a wedding date from single women.
Being in my late twenties, I haven’t escaped these marriage questions.
A few years ago, I visited hospitals frequently. One thing that was common in all my visits, was my marital status. For some reason, female nurses and doctors were quick to ask if I was married.
When I answered in the negative, then the questions and advice which I did not ask for would begin.
Nurse: “Why are you not married?”
Nurse: “What are you waiting for?”
Nurse: “Is he not ready?”
Me: “He is actually”
That answer would trigger a lecture on the benefits of marriage. Point one the need to have children early.
This conversation on marriage is one I have encountered a lot since turning twenty-six. From school to meetups, people try to figure out why I’m single.
I used to explain marriage wasn’t a big deal for me but these days I’ve grown weary of educating people.
I now find these one-sided conversations on age and marriage amusing.
Yes, one-sided because I have decided to stop feeding the monkeys at the zoo. I refuse to justify my terms of living to anyone much less a stranger.
These days, when people draw me aside and tell me how I have to start being serious and settle down, I laugh.
In my world, getting married doesn’t equate seriousness or maturity. I know a lot of married people who are huge irresponsible babies.
Here’s what counts as serious to me.
- Being in control of my life.
- Understanding myself.
- Being happy with my decisions.
Don’t get me wrong I have no problem with the institution of marriage, rather it’s seeing single women as an anomaly I have a problem with.
To me, there is nothing wrong in being more independent, emotionally resilient and less needy before deciding if I want to settle down or not.
The last time I had a conversation regarding age and marriage with a medical personnel, I was twenty-six and twenty-seven. Now I’m twenty-nine and I imagine the conversation would go this way.
Nurse: “How old are you?”
Nurse: “Why? Are you sure everything is ok?
Me: “Yes, just living life on my own terms.”