I was recently proposed to, and I accepted. BUT before you buy me presents and shower me with “Congratulations!!,” you should know that we broke it off within ten minutes. It was an interesting engagement to say the least.
The juicy details are as follows:
1) I was in Vegas.
2) He approached me, asked how my night was going. I explained my worst-case scenario for the night- getting married. He immediately dropped to one knee.
3) It was one of the better proposals I’ve had (four if you include him…there may be a few more sketchy ones that I’ve chosen to repress, though).
4) The details of our honeymoon plans included a combination of backpacking and 5-star hotels throughout Europe. And did I mention how cute he was? And in his mid-twenties. And a (supposedly) successful-ish actor in LA. And cute.
5) He decided maybe we should learn more about each other; he started with religion.
6) My confession that I was more spiritual than religious made him pause; he was religious he informed me. He was Christian and “into Jesus.” I waited for him to begin the divorce proceedings…
7) He decided we would be ok. Wow! I love this progressive, open, soon-to-be husband!
8) I asked what his non-negotiables were, thinking we had already made it through a traditional minefield and escaped with respect, acceptance, and compassion.
9) He hates cats.
10) I have cats. I love cats. I am actually a bit of a cat-whisperer.
11) The marriage ended over cats.
Here is what I learned in 9 minutes in Vegas:
The world has progressed closer to the point where religious differences are just that, differences. We are more accepting of people’s individual beliefs and paths to God. There is an openness and softening I am seeing more and more frequently that allows two people to openly share these beliefs (and in Vegas of all places) as well as respect them. These differences can be heard without condemnation or even an attempt at persuasion or conversion on either person’s part. And while I don’t think this incident can be construed as scientific evidence of these changes, it was still a nice indicator of it.
I was a little giddy during our conversation and for more reason than his (super) cuteness; I was giddy that it was easy to talk about my and his feelings about spirituality and religion as well as to be able to allow them to co-exist. I was raised to shy away from these conversations and especially with strangers. He came right out of the gate with it, and we navigated it in a mature, healthy, positive way. Look at what is possible!
And, apparently, having cats matters more than having different paths to God. As strange as it sounds, I’m thinking this is a sign of progress.