“Be drunk in love, since love is everything that exists.” – Rumi

Being engaged for the second time is fucking scary. I want to love it, revel in it, embrace it, and I hope that blogging about the fear will help dissipate it so that my soul can do these things.

I was engaged a few years ago. It was a well-thought out engagement; my ex and I were together for three and a half years, she had an elaborate and heartfelt proposal, we spent two months designing coordinating rings, and we began planning our wedding. It’s not like she didn’t think it through all the way or it was impulsive. Then she changed her mind. She said that she realized I wasn’t “the one” when we started wedding planning. I loved the planning, enjoyed viewing gorgeous, earthy weddings online, thinking about the details that would make our wedding special. She said I was a “bridezilla” for being excited about the wedding, even though all I was doing was normally planning the wedding. Sidenote – I was only doing half of what most women who get engaged do. I believe some lesbians, unfortunately, have some internalized homophobia when it comes to weddings. A lot of our “friends” at the time were weird about our wedding planning, and none were married. I’m so happy that lesbian weddings are becoming more and more a part of our society. Anyway, she left me right after we put down a deposit on our photographer, refused to give any of the money back, and did many other horrible, cold and unexpected things I won’t waste any more time explaining.

Fast-forward – J is amazing. She’s trustworthy, loving, and seems to be as excited about our engagement as I am. She brings things up on her own, like showing me the engagement ring designer website and asking if we can finish our engagement announcement of her own accord. She points out that having a baby is more of a commitment than getting married, and that she’s already dove into that process by literally giving me, and our future family, a part of her body. Plus, as she jokingly put it, what’s the likelihood of having two weddings called off in one lifetime? Haha. The point is, she’s so different and we’re so different. So how can I move away from being so gun-shy?

Fear is no way to be engaged. Grasping onto someone, or something, is no way to have a romance. This is likely what happened with my ex; I was holding on for dear life by diving into wedding planning, probably because deep down, I knew it was all we had; we were no longer connected and to be honest, had I more self-confidence, I would have admitted this to myself and moved on of my own accord. I don’t want to grasp onto J, nor do I need to. She’s not going anywhere, and knowing that deep within my bones will serve us both.

J is well aware of these fears, and she has been so reassuring. As our relationship grows, I need less reassurance. The engagement has brought up some fear, yes, but I know this fear will be short-lived.

Here’s a summary of Thich Nhat Hanh’s ideas on true love, to remind myself and hopefully all of you what it means to have a truly open heart:

Maitri – loving kindness is the desire and ability to bring joy to someone else. In order to love someone without hurting her, you must understand her, not in terms of yourself, but outside of yourself. To do this, we must listen and see the person.

Karuna – the desire and ability to ease the pain of someone, which requires understanding the nature of her suffering.

Mudita – out of understanding and easing suffering comes joy. A loving relationship is not all meditation and suffering – joy is at the heart of true love.

Upeksha – equanimity and freedom. When you love someone, you bring her freedom. Giving your Love all of the above also gives her security and space, which brings ultimate freedom.

This is paraphrased from the book True Love by Thich Nhat Hanh. The ideas are Buddhist in nature, but seem so universal to me. I’m putting forth an intention to love J wholly, not through my fear or grasping, but from a place of openness, confidence and joy.

“Your task is not to seek for love, but merely to seek and find all the barriers within yourself that you have built against it.” -Rumi

By the way, I hope my lovely WP friends like weddings. I know most of you have already had that chapter, and your gorgeous wedding pics inspire me! I’d love to share wedding planning with you in the future, if you’re interested. This may become a pregnant bride blog!