We Are Becoming The Men We Wanted To Marry
A few months ago, I received this email from Crosby. It was so amazing that it brought tears to my eyes, & I wanted to share it — I was just waiting for the right occasion. I think this is a perfect illustration of RADICAL SELF LOVE, & radical self love above all else. Thanks so much, girl. You are brave & magical.
“I’ve listened to Love & Sequins #3, well three times so far, & there are so many lovely nuggets of truth in there. I just had, or am having?, a complete life upheaval, that started with my wonderful, creative, inspiring mom dying suddenly two years ago & have since involved things that would only be pretty in a dark way if Francesca Lia Block wrote about them. However, as I emerged from that time, one of the most significant things that happened was that I finally was able to say goodbye to a certain boy I had been in love with for the better part of a decade. I think that losing my mom and understanding loss and grief in such an intimate way enabled me to be able to finally and firmly walk away from a situation that did not serve or support me. I had this realization one night that I no longer had to wait, that I loved me now, and that love was stronger than the promise of what might someday come to be. Totally cliche & yet no less meaningful when it finally happened one night.
“So anyway, I just turned 30 & after a year of having my concepts of family, love & all the rest really turned upside down, I decided I wanted to do something, a sort of celebration & commitment to myself, to affirm that no matter what happened, or who left or died or wouldn’t or couldn’t show up in relationship with me, blah blah blah, that I was committed to being all of those things, mother, lover, best friend etc, for myself. So I bought myself a tiny diamond ring, went to the lovely self-realization gardens here in San Diego & quietly spoke the vows I wrote out loud to myself, looking out over the ocean, in one of my prettiest dresses.
“& now I have this ring on my finger that reminds me that I am in control of my experience & my life, & that I am my own partner. When I was putting the whole little idea together, I was reminded of the Gloria Steinem quote, “We are becoming the men we wanted to marry,” but it’s more than that (not sure where I sit on the whole traditional marriage idea anyway) it felt more of a right of passage, like a growing up thing, like a being a woman without a mom to call up on the phone when she is sad or happy thing, like a woman who worried about not being good enough finally looking at that sad, lovely boy & realizing that this wasn’t good enough. It’s said that the original meaning of the word virgin was a woman whole unto herself, or a free woman, not possessed by any man – I felt like I wanted to reclaim that freedom for myself and also that I was no longer exactly the girl I was before and I wanted to honor and acknowledge that for myself in a meaningful way. I know other women have done like entire wedding ceremonies, & knew a girl who had a “shower” for herself where she registered & had a party celebrating her buying her first home, but I just wanted to do something simple with me & me (I’m a gemini so maybe this whole dual me/me thing is a bit easier to visualize!).
“I would love it for this idea of self-marriage, or self-commitments or whatever to make it into your book, because I think while it’s a new idea it’s a pretty powerful one, & fitting given the changing expectations & cultural/personal implications of marriage, & just the ever-changing nature of life itself. It seems like the relationship you have with yourself is really the driver in the quality of relationships you have with others. Two of my friends got tears in their eyes when I told them, as much as for what it meant to me as for their own desire to be able to do something similar, to be able to stare into the mirror or whatever & know that kind of fierce self-love, & I would love for women to consider the fact that they don’t have to wait for this magical relationship to appear, they can, in a way, cultivate that for themselves, in a way that is deeply selfish, in the best way.
“When I do get into a new relationship, which I have a feeling is going to be pretty soon, I know that for the rest of my life, no matter the marriage or partnership or whatever, that I married myself first, & I will use that to guide me in the future, & I think it will make me a better partner.”
Ahhh, Crosby, you are amazing!
Nonpareils, I ask you: What do you think about the concept of self-marriage? Is it something you’d ever do?