One ring to rule them all…a wedding ring, to be precise.

No, I’m not planning on getting married or engaged anytime soon (or, to use my exact phrasing: “Hells no!”), but I would be lying if I said it wasn’t on my mind lately. In fact, I haven’t been able to avoid it.

In one day the following happened: (1) I was asked by a co-worker after I related my plans for the evening (which involved Ghostwheel) if we were engaged yet; (2) my therapist asked me if I think Ghost is “The One”; (3) I took one of those ridiculous BuzzFeed quizzes that somehow guessed my correct age and relationship status of…married; and (4) Ghost and I were talking about our hopes and dreams, and he said (in response to my voicing a desire to one day embarrass all my kids with explicit conversations at the dinner table), “Well, I’m planning on staying with you, so I’ll do my best to make that happen.” All that in ONE day.

I probably said this before, and I’ll probably say this again, but I never thought that I would be the person in a relationship afraid of commitment. Yet, that’s who I am. I’m the one who took my time deciding if I wanted to be in a relationship with Ghostwheel. I’m the one who made him wait a good month after saying “I love you” to say “I love you, too” back. And now, talking about marriage, I’m terrified.

Marriage is something that I want one day, don’t get me wrong. One of the biggest desires in my heart is to be married one day, with kids and a house to make memories in. There has been many a day when I’ve daydreamed about conversations with people that don’t exist yet, and vacation scenarios with a family that remains in blissful shadow. My husband, in particular, is always a part of these imaginary scenarios, but, until I started dating Ghostwheel, he was always a mystery figure. And I think I just got used to him being that way.

You see, I don’t believe in “The One.” That is, I don’t believe there is one person created to be your romantic partner, and no one else. I think there are lots of “Ones” out there, it’s just a question of who you meet and commit to first.

Because of that, I have liked to keep the image of my future husband blank. I don’t care what he looks like, after all, it’s his heart and personality that matter most to me. I have been careful about not giving my imaginary husband too great a role, because how could I assign a role to someone I don’t know? In my imaginings, I’m the one doing everything with the kids, while my hubby is standing by doing nothing, although wholeheartedly supporting me. I can’t ask a stranger to step in, after all: that man could be anyone. But talking to Ghostwheel, recognizing that our dreams, as far as families go, are in complete alignment, I realized that I have to give up my imaginary hubby.

I have to give him up because, for all my careful imaginings of nothing in particular about him, I’ve clung to the vague conception so much that any real person that I meet can’t just step in–they have to take over. In my enthusiasm to not imagine “The One,” I’ve imagined all men out of my life and given my lifetime partner a supporting role, at most. That’s not right.

So no, I’m not getting married or engaged anytime soon. Ghostwheel and I have a ways to go together before that is going to happen! But, we are reaching a point where we can start talking and imagining a future together more comfortably. Probably more comfortably on his side than mine, to be honest. But for someone who has created a “One” to deny “The One” in her imaginary adventures in her mind, that’s something that I will just need to grow into.

I’m ready to give up all “The One”s in my life, real or imaginary, as long as I’m with the Right One.