i've had this tattoo on my finger for quite some time, but people (even some that i see on a daily basis ) are starting to notice it lately and ask what it means. if you know me at all, you know that every tattoo i have means something significant to me. even if those meanings have changed over the years.
so here is the photo. DEFY on my left ring finger.
what am i defying? i am defying the standard definition of marriage that i was raised around. it wasn't originally intended as a statement re: same sex marriage, but a lot of people assume that's part of its purpose. i'm happy to not argue the point, tho.
see, i don't believe that paperwork, name changes, and rings are required to validate your relationship as a marriage.
in my life, i've had two marriages. one with papers and one without. and to be perfectly honest, the paperless relationship was a million times more of a marriage than the legal one. unless, of course, you're going by the kind of marriages most of my relatives have.
growing up, the marriages i had around me to set an example were... hrm. let's do this with a list of observations.
- the couples pretended that the man ran the household while they were in public view, but in reality the wives ran EVERYTHING, including the husband.
- there was little to no affection.
- they never looked like they enjoyed each other's company.
- when the wives gathered, they did nothing but complain about their husbands.
- when the husbands gathered, they avoided any discussion of their wives altogether.
- the wives took care of the children while the husbands were mostly bouncing between being a playmate and a disciplinarian.
- they all seemed to be of the opinion that sex was no longer necessary in their relationships.
it was obvious to me that these people were not together because they still wanted to be. they were together because they were obligated to be. and were legally bound to each other.
this is what i want to defy. the assumption that once you are married all of the romance and intimacy goes away.
i don't want a relationship that starts to feel like a job.
i want to truly enjoy the person that i'm with. i want look at him sitting on the couch, or across the dinner table, or with the kids, or mowing the yard, or working, or brushing his teeth, or sleeping next to me, and know that he is with me because he wants to be and not out of some feeling of obligation or fear of what i'll take from him if he leaves. i don't want him to feel like he has to take care of me. or that he is trapped.
i just want to be happy and in love. that's what makes a marriage real. and i don't need a paper or a ring to validate it to anyone else. if you can't take my relationship seriously without those things, then it sucks to be you. ;)
February, 13 2010 under tattoo