Those who are or were still single above the age of 25 in Indonesia are familiar with and have probably made their peace with the game or phenomenon called “The Altar Run”. It’s when we are chased after by vicious aunts and uncles or distant relatives merely to ask when we are getting married. They would grill us down to the core as to find the perfect reason why we haven’t moved on to the next stage of life. Most will end up coming to the conclusion, regardless of what we might have said, that either we are too picky, or we are simply not wanted. As if they couldn’t factor in any other reasons, like mental readiness, financial readiness, or the fact that we are still enjoying our singlehood. Nope, that wouldn’t make any sense.
Although I’m sure that this game is tougher for women than it is for men, I am glad that I got out of it alive. I am now joined for life to my best friend and together we are parenting two of the most beautiful girls in the world (I may be biased here, but come on, everyone says that about their kids!). I have gone several levels up in the game by the standards of those vicious aunts and uncles and distant relatives, but I don’t care about that. I do, however, still care very much about people who marry for all the wrong reasons. Choosing to settle down simply to ward off unwanted questions is not what marriage is all about. Nor is marrying for financial stability or increase in social stature. Marriage is a sacred union that is designed for matured men and women, not boys and girls, and requires an extensive preparation to make it a success.
The keyword here is maturity. It is important to realize that spiritual maturity, physical maturity and emotional maturity does not come with age, rather it comes with the acceptance of responsibility. Making the decision to join ourselves willingly to the person of our choice is a commitment we are responsible for a lifetime. And maturity is what keeps us standing strong during the storm and not run back to our moms and dads when things get rough. Financial maturity is another thing. We don’t enter a marriage because we lack or we have provided all our needs as super singles, but we marry because we know that we are mature enough to prioritize.
I believe that no matter how young or old we are, as long as we are mature enough to enter marriage, we will discover that marriage brings joy and fulfillment to both parties. Age is just a number. But maturity is the key. So for all you singles out there, when you find yourself being involuntarily invited to a non-stop game of “The Altar Run”, be sure that you’re mature enough to tell them why you don’t want to play.
As for Ricardo and Melisa - as young as you are, you are ready for this marriage. Have lots of fun, share lots of laughter, be super in love throughout the years, and discover the joy that is marriage!