Every one of us grows up thinking we will have a Disney-style, fairytale life. We’ll meet a handsome prince or princess, fall madly in love, get married, and live happily ever after.
The truth is, that doesn’t always happen.
Life is messy and complicated. People make mistakes and poor choices. They deceive one another, make promises they don’t intend to keep, and break one another’s hearts. It’s not very Disneyesque. It’s more Amityville Horror, actually. Let me paint you two scenarios.
Here’s what I’ve seen happen since I’ve graduated high school. Johnny and Susie, high school sweethearts, go off to college. They get engaged at the ripe, old age of 22 (Senior year…anything past is an old maid in these parts), and get married the following year. They invite 350 people to their wedding, and it’s lovely. Two years later, at the ripe old age of 25, they start a family. By 30, they have bought at least one home and have no less than two children. They’ve only ever dated each other (seriously), and most of them have never had a heart broken by the opposite sex. Well, at least not in a serious manner. Sorry folks, but 15 year-olds don’t know what love is quite yet. That broken heart is in the minor leagues compared to adult breakups. This is the Disney version, in my opinion. It’s also the path laid out for some VERY lucky folks, who I hope realize how blessed they have been. I’d have loved to had that love story. It sounds delightful! However, I belong to the other camp.
Over at the Amityville love story headquarters, my 20s were heaped with heartbreak. Deceitful men, untrue hearts, and broken promises were all pitstops on my path to Disneyworld. It was rough. I picked some winners, I must say. I kept waiting for my Disney moment. And waiting. And waiting. And, then I had Ethan. And Ethan was a different kind of love than what I’d ever understood before then. It was an all-encompassing, life-changing love. His needs came first, and his best interest was always my top priority. He was just what I needed to learn about love and to start seriously pursuing my Disney dream life. I got a late start. I prefer to call myself a “late-bloomer.”
At this point, I started thinking about not only the kind of man I needed in my life but the kind of father I wanted in Ethan’s life. This made it easy. Weeding out deadbeats was simple. I waited, and I prayed for a man to come into my life to fulfill the needs of both me and Ethan. And sure enough, God delivered. It surely wasn’t fast or soon enough for me, but he delivered nonetheless. I met my Jeramey, and he changed my life in ways that only true love can do. He was my Prince Charming. And surely, we were no strangers to heartache and had both made mistakes in the past, but we vowed to move forward together.
I went home from our first date at my very favorite Mexican restaurant, and I knew. I felt it. He was the one. Cue the Disney music.
And so, I ask you to look at your own love story. Is it Disney? Is it messy? Was it a bumpy road along the way? As you think about your own “one,” be grateful for him or her. There are many, many people out there still dreaming of catching their own Disney moment.