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402 days. 402 (plus or minus… mostly minus) posts.

Tag: marriage

Day 1100: Kind of a big deal

My fiancé and I are getting married sometime in the next two weeks, depending on how you look at it (we picked a destination wedding, so the legal part is happening separately).

We’re. Getting. Married.

Marriage is a big deal, right? And for all its common-ness, it’s a provocative subject. As an institution, marriage had little to do with love until relatively recently. And it had little to do with two equals creating a partnership until even MORE recently (not-so-fun fact: most states didn’t consider marital rape a crime until the late 1970s).

The median age for getting married is going up, and the number of marriages most of us will have in our lifetime is going up.

Marriage is evolving, as things do.

Joe and I are both pretty pragmatic people. We know the marriage statistics, advantages and pitfalls. We know exactly what tax benefits our union will result in, and we’ve made some strategic choices. We elected for pre-marital counseling by way of the Prepare/Enrich assessment, which gave us data (Pie charts! Graphs! Percentages! Yay!) to analyze.

Our engagement has been filled with preparatory exercises designed to help us understand what we’re getting into, and why. And by all accounts, we’re doing everything right, if not romantically (nothing says romance like empirical data).

But I’m getting the sense that we aren’t preparing for marriage, exactly. What this actually feels like is preparation for continuous preparation. Or continuous change. Or maybe just continuously taking another person into consideration.

Because we’re both in our thirties, we have established independent-everythings—routines, schedules, habits, friends, etc. Every day, we make micro-decisions about how much our physical and emotional worlds should overlap, and where we can each bend and flex to accommodate. And sometimes we hit surprisingly hard edges. (I just think beds look better when they’re made!)

Ultimately, we’re both asking ourselves why we want to do this. For me, the answer is pretty simple. I love him, and I see how our personalities naturally support and balance each other. We accept each other. We challenge each other. We’re kind to each other. We have fun together and we respect each other’s independence. We both like learning. He makes really good quiche.

And when I think about my future, I want him to be there—even though I don’t know exactly who I will be or who he will be.

So in these days before we sign our papers and stand with our families and agree to keep picking each other, I’m feeling some mixture of totally chill and excited-bananas. The bed is messy. The quiche is in the oven. And despite our best preparations, neither of us has any idea what we’re getting into. Which is half the fun, right?

messybed.jpgThat bed.

Day 311: To My Sister on Her 19th Day of Marriage

Dear Sister,

Congratulations. Not because you’re married now, and not because you threw an amazing party that your guests begrudgingly left high on laughter and wine and still super sweaty from dancing to What Does the Fox Say.

Congratulations because you’re a thoughtful, intelligent, funny, caring, dedicated, driven and beautiful person. And you married a guy who respects, challenges and loves you. I am proud to call him my brother.

Watching you on your wedding day reminded me how incredibly lucky I am to be your (slightly older and incredibly knowledgable) sister. But mostly your friend. You move through life with a sort of fierce grace that I so admire.

Since I neglected to leave these at the wedding itself, here are my wishes for you and my new little bro:

May you foster a bright light in each other. May you feed the light’s flame should it ever start to dim.

May you help each other grow, with the wisdom that you can grow in different and complementary ways.

May you let the little things go. May you respect the big things.

May you laugh and laugh and laugh.

May you not try to change each other. May you commit to constant personal growth instead.

May you create a safe and welcoming space for each other.

May you support each other’s interests but not each other’s habits.

May you always think quirks are cute.

May you celebrate the beautiful world together. May you cry sometimes, too.

May you pause often and let angry words float quietly away.

May you understand each other’s needs. May you respect that your partner’s needs may be different than yours.

May you work and relax.

And may you always remember that you have two sisters, two brothers and a host of other lovelies who are there for you anytime you need really good advice, dance instruction, booze, a good book, an arm to lean on, pizza, a doctor, perspective, funny jokes and/or an open ear. We’re only an instant phone call or a short plane ride away.

My sister's wedding(Also, thanks for picking out the killer bridesmaid dresses. Love, Ashleigh)