“I’m getting married once I graduate High School,” I told a dear friend once upon a time in the middle of a light conversation. “I don’t care who it is, as long as he’s religious. I don’t care if he just graduated as well, what matters now is how I can be a proper lady to get a good husband. My parents can pay for university.”

I was still the 15 year old teenager I wrote in my Bio, while my speaking partner was just two years older.

“What is it of all sudden?” she asked in worry. “Did something happen?”

I chuckled, “No, not really. Just got too tired of not being able to openly love anybody without it being a sin, you know? I’d really like to be able to love in a Halal way.”

We have always been too religious and God oriented for the majority of people in our community, and she understood it in a way most of my friend wouldn’t have been able to.

“I suppose I agree,” she responded. “I understand completely. I had the same thoughts just recently.”

“Right? I don’t care much about not being able to support myself yet.”

She paused, “Are you not scared?”

I snorted. Of course I was.

“What matters is I get married, date as long as I want, and then have kids once I’m a bit older and ready. Then everyone can suck it up and have their happily ever after.”

And then I told her a story of a couple who did just so. Married and bonded in a sacred relationship under His approval, both only 18. It was all I ever really wanted ever since I was in elementary. To be married so young, to be able to openly love without fearing anybody’s judgement. I told her of the brother of the bride who’s looking for a wife as well, I told her how I wish to be good enough person for man like him who’s serious about his religion and education.

She was the only person who’d understand my messed up train of thoughts, and thank Lord for her.

“I’m keeping my heart for my prince as well, you know?” She mused. “So now I’m really keeping myself for him, whoever he might be, so that I can be the best one for him too. Whoever my husband will be, I’ve promised to myself that once I’m married, I will keep my heart just for him and never look anywhere else.”

She has always been amazing in that traditional kind of way.

“I’m glad someone like you exist,” she said, and it was peaceful to hear it from her. “People here thinks getting hitched early is bad. I don’t get why.”

I laughed, “Maybe they think people like us are too eager to be intimate.

“What’s wrong about it?” She frowned. Then, she smiled, “Well, protect yourself until you find the one,” she ended the conversation. “I’ll protect myself as well too.”

“Alright.”

It was the only support I had about the matter, and I wasn’t one to say no to her. It won’t be the last conversation about it, and where we’re at was a good place for me. I look forward to where we’ll stand in two years.

Cheers for now, and here’s to her.