In April, I got engaged to my boyfriend Jerry, of almost 7 years. It’s honestly still surreal to me. It’s probably because I was totally caught off guard about the engagement plans.
Jerry along with my family planned an outing for me while they were setting up the proposal at my house. Meanwhile, one of my close friends hung out with my siblings and I. I realized after the proposal that 1) Jerry really knows me well 2) I really have my head in the clouds. My block was unusually packed with cars and still I was oblivious to the situation. My sister also blindfolded me and I thought she was going to put a pet in my hand.
So to briefly recap the proposal, it was definitely a sweet DIY event. In my backyard, there where lights that hung from the top of my house and were placed on the ground. Jerry sang and played on his guitar “Marry Me” by Train. He said something really sweet. Some family and friends were there to congratulate us and eat food. Afterwards, we ate s’mores by the fire pit. Some may find this engagement underwhelming, but the thought of Jerry proposing to me in a restaurant or in a park makes me cringe. So I was pretty happy with his plans.
Last photo credit to Jocelyn Medina Photography
Before the proposal, I wrote that I felt like I was in a new season with Jerry in my prayer book. I was anxious to reach that new level in my relationship with him. Now we are engaged. I truly thank God for Jerry and that He has kept us until now.
Fast-forward to June and you would think I would be over the moon about my engagement and wedding planning. I can honestly say that most of the time I feel indifferent. Its hard because I wish I felt more content. By the way I act, you would think I never got engaged. I’m barely researching and planning. Its been slightly frustrating at times to Jerry that I haven’t shown any interest.
Jerry and I have sat down to start wedding planning only to end up talking about our current fears and insecurities. Long conversations reflecting our worries and doubts. He has been such a great friend during this time and it has confirmed to me how awesome he will be as a husband.
So this season has help me to realize a few things I would like to share:
1. True contentment is found in Christ alone
Ever Since I was young, I thought that finding your match would be that “Ah-ha!” moment. An engagement would usher in Mr. Complete Joy and Mr. Ultimate Satisfaction. Many people say the person they marry “completes them”. I found out in my current season of insecurity that Jerry would help to the best of his ability. But his counsel was not enough. There was a line that was always drawn and I felt like there was nothing left to do but to pray. I am being real with God and slowly accepting the changes that are happening daily. The moments that I’ve prayed honest prayers to God are the times I have felt most satisfied.
2. You don’t have to have it all together to get married and you probably wont have it all together.
When I was a teenager I would always say, “I will wait for five years to save after my engagement for a wedding.” I wanted a “high quality” wedding. But you grow up only to find that adulthood doesn’t always go according to plan. I mean I knew Jerry since I was a preteen and he was the least likely candidate in my future husband list. So when I got engaged it shattered the expectations I had for my future self. I was worried about not having finished college or starting my career. My current job, although rewarding, doesn’t pay enough to live comfortably. Its been hard to trust God with a wedding when many things are currently “up in the air”. I’m learning to trust God and those around me. I’m relying on the fact that He knows my desires and that everything will go according to His plans. Also, I’m realizing that I can depend on my family and close friends to help along the way. The unknown is what makes life so much more beautiful and fascinating. I have to accept life for what it is not what I want it to be.
3. Comparison is truly the thief of joy!
As soon as I got engaged, it seemed as though everyone and their mom got engaged too. Instead of focusing on my engagement, I was social media stalking everyone else! I began obsessing over couples proposal stories and comparing how many congrats they received in comparison to mine. I started to feel really insecure about my ring, my proposal pictures, and even Jerry’s plans. I was not happy at all. I waited almost 7 years for this moment to come. When the time came, I was more miserable than ever. Even worse, I began to compare my relationships to couples that weren’t even engaged yet! It was draining me to the core. I had to learn that I needed to focus on Jerry & I. I needed to refrain from even snooping on other couples through social media. It was time to stop feeling sorry for myself. This is a moment in time I would never get back. I must be present and take everything for what it is. I’m different than other people and our relationship is unique. Comparison is deadly. So I’m committed to looking forward and not to what is happening around me.
I hope that my transparency will be a blessing to someone. Please keep Jerry and I in your prayers as we move forward in this journey. I know it wont be easy but my hope is in the Lord. He always provides complete comfort and contentment.
I’ve learned by now to be quite content whatever my circumstances. I’m just as happy with little as with much, with much as with little. I’ve found the recipe for being happy whether full or hungry, hands full or hands empty. Whatever I have, wherever I am, I can make it through anything in the One who makes me who I am.