In the opinion of the world, marriage ends all, as it does in a comedy. The truth is precisely the opposite: it begins all.
~Anne Sophie Swetchine
Fourteen months ago I was jumping up and down in front of a guy on bended knee. Luckily, I knew the guy. And even more luckily, he was holding out in front of him a sparkly piece of jewelry and asking me to wear it for the rest of my life. You never really know how you're going to get engaged, and if you're anything like I was as B and I neared the two-year anniversary of our first date, you spend an awful lot of time thinking about it. But allow me to let you in on a little secret, for those of you who haven't experienced it yet: it doesn't matter how it happens. What does matter, is that however he does it (or she does it), it's a moment that the two of you share and will remember for the rest of your lives.
After breaking the big news to every contact in my cell phone and every friend on Facebook, I spent the next few days extremely distracted by the gem I now sported on my left hand. I found myself using an exceptional amount of hand gestures, and deemed it necessary to start wearing driving gloves--not because I was channeling my inner Audrey, but because I was blinded by the sparkle on the steering wheel. It wasn't long, though, before reality set in and I realized that planning a wedding was more than just flipping through bridal magazines, sipping champagne while scrutinizing white gowns, and booking a luxurious honeymoon. I began to feel bogged down by the details; although the 200+ to-do list provided by theknot is extremely helpful (and the website is where I found the majority of my vendors!), it's also incredibly daunting.
One thing you'll quickly learn, though, when planning a wedding, is that everyone has a piece of advice. (I hear it's a lot like having kids.) Everyone has fond memories of their own wedding, and so assumes that's how everyone should do it. (On a side note, can you imagine how mind-numbingly boring it would be if everyone had a perfectly traditional wedding??) Anyway, I was fortunate to come across a friend who had a piece of legitly wise advice. She said to me: "You know, everyone spends all this time preparing for one wedding day, and forgets to make time to prepare for a lifetime of marriage."
I was flabbergasted (okay, maybe not flabbergasted, but how cool is it to use that word?). And it was at that moment that I changed my outlook on this stage of my life. Since then, B and I have been focusing on the marriage as opposed to the wedding. We're still having a wedding--one that I like to say is "medium-sized", but in reality is sliding towards the "large" end of the spectrum--so we obviously have a lot of the mundane details to dredge through. But along the way, we strive to stay connected to our goal. Because, after all, no matter how the wedding day turns out (whether there's rain, forgotten hair appointments, bear cubs wrestling in the aisles...) we'll still be married at the end of it, and that was the goal.
This blog, then, will become my journal for what has been the most eye-opening time of my life, to date. Expect to read of lessons learned, decisions made, and funny anecdotes. My hope is that someone in the whole, wide blogosphere will learn from, feel connected to, or at least get a good laugh from my records.