When my husband and I argue, we do it naked. By fighting naked we take the barriers of vulnerability off and allow ourselves to be real and transparent in that moment. This level of vulnerability that we have developed began on our wedding night, when I had sex for the very first time. I was a virgin when I married Charlie at 24 years old; and on my wedding night, I opened myself up to full vulnerability with him. Being vulnerable with him in all phases of our lives has solidified a bond beyond what I could ever explain. I went into my wedding night, eyes wide shut and nervous. But my husband, being the amazing and loving man that he is, was the perfect gentleman that night. He calmed my nerves of having sex for the first time and made it fun. When that level of fear was taken off, I remembered that I was valuable and I realized that this was freedom.
After 24 years of waiting, all the excitement came out; I was ready! In choosing to wait for marriage my entire life to have sex, that night I learned that by denying myself short term pleasure, I had gained long term joy. It was difficult for me to wait after meeting him because I sincerely knew that God brought him to me. But we knew this was our commitment, so we stuck to it. I was going into this first time with nothing but excitement and joy. That was true freedom and it made those years of waiting completely worth it.
Waiting provided more freedom than restriction. My story in waiting is about freedom.
I struggled with insecurities about my body, as many women do. I kept fit running and doing outdoor activities but since being married, I have become so much more comfortable with my body than I did when I was single. I knew on our wedding night that our bond was deeper than the physical. That night was us going to another level – we were coming to know each other on a new level of intimacy. That’s when I let go of all my physical insecurities; because I finally, deeply understood intimacy and it was beyond an outward appearance. Our commitment to wait until marriage has resulted in fun, amazing intimacy. 7 years and 2 kids later we still have sex all the time, so often. I have become addicted to him. This is why sex is so important. Our bodies become so amazingly attached to the person we choose to sleep with and its truly freeing to know that the only man I am addicted to is the man I will be with forever. Our bond is true and sincere, and we grow in new ways of sincerity every day. That is the true freedom of waiting.
In our marriage, I see freedom every day. We made a commitment from the time we met each other to wait. For the last month before marriage, we agreed not to kiss – we set that boundary as temptation grew in those final months. On our wedding day, it felt brand new; we totally "made-out" at the altar. But, because of our commitment: my wait, his wait, I never worry about cheating. We have minimal drama, no concerns of jealousy. If we can accomplish waiting, we can accomplish anything. Because of my innocence, when I got married, I took the time to figure out and explore everything my husband liked. I tailored my sex life to be everything my husband wants and needs and vise versa with him to me. We figured this out together and that was so "dope." In a hyper-sexualized society that glorifies multiplicity and “experience” in the area of sex, it was nice to be exploring this with him only. I am everything he wanted. Also, despite what culture says about virgins not knowing what to do and how to have fun, I can assure you, that was not the case in my marriage and has been affirmed multiple times, in multiple ways by my husband.
Above all, during my wait, I found the most freedom when I let go of the overrated idea of waiting for “The One”. People spend so much of their lives obsessing over this ideal mate and whether he/she is the one, true, perfect person without ever stopping to focus on whether you yourself are the person God wants you to be. Besides, nobody wants to date someone if they feel they will always be judged on whether or not they are perfect. I was focused less on the other person being “the one” and more on improving who I was myself. I made the commitment to wait because I wanted to be a better person, not just because of purity. I spent time investing in myself and my own spiritual and personal development. I explored more, took adult ballet classes, when I felt aroused I went exercising, I read good books and studied the Bible. Most importantly, I surrounded myself with friends who were waiting. That was a huge blessing for me; I had friendship accountability and people around me that brought encouragement. Great girlfriends are important. We had fun with waiting. My friends and I would laugh and make fun of our celibacy. The cultural norm is to take the laughter out of waiting because people tag it as torturous, but we took all the stress out of it and enjoyed jokes and laughs with it. Life is stressful enough, no need to stress over waiting too.
Now that I am married, I can see that taking the time while single to be focused on myself and becoming the right person for God was hugely necessary. See, my husband had been married before me. I was living in California and going to Colorado to visit college friends when my aunt set us up on a blind, coffee date. Before meeting me, he also had committed to be a virgin until marriage. He had committed his life to Christ, chosen the wait, and married a woman who ended up being a fraud. When I met him, I honestly didn’t know much about divorce, and while that decision may have initially been overwhelming, God used that situation to give me grace and forgiveness. I had invested so much in my relationship with God and learning about his love that by the time I went into my relationship with Charlie I knew I needed to trust the Lord that this was our story and we needed to work together to let go of that past. I wasn’t above him because of his past. Together we put his past behind us and focused on who we would be going forward. Marrying someone is choosing them for who their future is, not for what their past is. We dated for 8 months, were engaged for 3 months, and planned a wedding for 350 people in a month’s time; our life together has been one of our greatest blessings. God has allowed me to be a mom and an entrepreneur, working at home running my own business.
I wasn’t marrying a flawless individual, but God has honored our decision to wait and blessed us ten-fold. Marriage is a daily commitment, I signed up for this, for life and I am sticking to this, the same way I stuck to the wait.
When I look back on my days of being single and think of the times I was filled with angst, I laugh. It wasn’t that long. It was only for a season. That season will pass. Everyone’s story is different. Don’t be afraid of the wait, learn about sex. Know your stance on sex and stay true to it. Know that it is ok to explore and mentally prepare yourself for that time if you stand firm. Find people to connect with, find what you love and never be ashamed of waiting. Waiting for me was a commitment I made at 13 years old, and the freedom from insecurities, drama and judgement are only a few things that remind me it was worth every day of it.