Two nights ago, a good friend of mine asked me if my girlfriend was “the one.” I told her I didn’t know, I didn’t think anyone was ever sure – and that I’d have to wait and see. I told her that I believe everything is temporary, and that inherently my relationship would be too.
It was at this point she told me to cut the shit. She told me that her mother, after meeting her father, came home to her parents and told them that she had met the man she was going to marry. Her grandparents had done the same, and she wholeheartedly believes that while a lot of things in life are temporary – love is in fact, not so.
While a lot of things in life are temporary – live is in fact, not so
Fast forward to two days later – I am now sitting in a tattooist’s chair, getting my girlfriend’s initials tattooed on the back of my forearm. My best friend is waiting out front, and my tattooist Johnny is making the appropriate “there’s no going back now” jokes. There’s 30 seconds of panic as he starts my tattoo, where my whole body becomes hot, and my stomach ties like a captain’s knot. Then, I look down at the tattoo, and see the unfinished outline of my girlfriend’s initials – a black ‘KM’ just below my wrist. With that, the panic subsided and all seemed to be completely solved.
It was in this moment I knew I had beaten a small demon within myself. Since December of last year, I have struggled, as I know many people my age have, with the idea of temporality. I have struggled since December, because that was the month one of my best friends committed suicide, and left us all forever. One night he was there and the next he wasn’t.
I struggled to trust that anything I loved, or could love, had any obligation to stay for just that reason
I have been haunted by this feeling ever since. I struggled to trust that anything I loved, or could love, had any obligation to stay for just that reason. So when one of my closest friends asked me if my girlfriend of two years was the one, I told her I didn’t know. After this conversation, I sat and asked myself why I had said that.
Because the truth was I had known since our first conversation, sat on the steps outside our halls at University. I got my tattoo a day before our two year anniversary, and there hasn’t been a day in those two years that I haven’t found something new to love about her. So, when my best friend said it was a great idea to get a permanent reminder of this I agreed.
In fifteen minutes, I had my girlfriend’s initials on my arm for the rest of my life. Not only was this the most romantic anniversary present she had ever received, it was also hugely monumental for me. Now, every time I look down at those initials, I’ll know that I have come to accept that whilst I still believe everything is temporary some things last longer than others. And sometimes, it is up to you to make them last as long as possible, no matter what.
Banner image: @fart_lyfe