Waiting for My Reward
Phil from A Family Runs Through It is a homeschooling Stay-At-Home-Dad and a provider of fine menswear. He had something to say, and by golly, this is the place to say it.
Please welcome Phil!
It might be old news by now, but that whole Bristol Palin pregnancy situation still bugs me.
At first I briefly wondered about the hypocrisy of a mother who preaches abstinence to other kids, but can't seem to control the behaviors of her own.
Then I started thinking about all the life experiences the two young kids will be missing out on because they're tied down to the responsibility of a baby. College, travel, friends. It's all out the window now for them. Time to grow up fast, whether they're ready or not.
Ultimately, though, what continues to bother me is the almost celebratory manner in which the news of their pre-marital sex was greeted by conservative religious Republicans.
It reached a point where the young man who couldn't control his hormones was receiving a pat on the back from a US Senator and Presidential candidate. That went along with the free airplane ride and television face time he got out of the deal. I didn't notice, did he get a standing ovation at the convention as well?
And here is what bugs me. A long time ago, in a city not far away, I became engaged to a wonderful young woman. I was 24, she was 20. Everyone was happy for us as we set the wedding date for a distant day some 18 months into the future.
We were in love, and ready. Ready for you-know-what.
But before anything could happen, we both received not-so-subtle messages from members of her family and church.
"You wait!" they told us. "Wait until you are married!"
I don't remember them telling us why. It was simply imperative that we wait. Because if we didn't, we would be shunned by all. As in nobody would support us, talk to us, be friends with us. And, most assuredly, nobody would be coming to our wedding.
That's a frightening prospect for two people just starting out in life. So, we waited. And waited. And waited.
Damn, we waited!
Eighteen long months, we stupidly waited.
And for what? Where was our reward? Well, I mean besides THAT.
The people who made us wait twenty years ago are the very same kinds of people who are now issuing press releases about how proud they are of this brave young unmarried couple having sex in the backseat of a Chevy Silverado so they can accidentally make a baby.
I kept expecting them to talk about how Bristol and Levi would be shunned. Or, at the very least, I thought someone might say how disappointed they were in these kids for throwing away a big chunk of their future because they did not wait.
Hey, I waited! And, over time, I got my reward. A loving, generous wife of nearly 20 years, along with two kids who we chose to bring into this world when we were ready for them.
And all those people who scared us into waiting back then? We shun THEM now. That's payback.