Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Getting Married - A Rite of Passage

I’m just over a month away from getting married, so the topic of this blog seems pretty obvious to me.  How can I not write about it?  After all, I can’t think of anything that I’ve put more time, stress, effort, thought, concern, emotion, money, attention, anxiety, frustration, etc., etc., etc., etc. into ever in my life.  And, if I’m being perfectly honest I can’t say that I’ve dealt with it all too well. 

I know that when I look back on the planning of this day, I’m going to regret stressing out over it as much as I have.  However, the honest truth is that I feel this overwhelming responsibility to have the most beautiful, put-together day of my life.   I want everything to be perfect, and I’m anxious that this may not happen.  This is probably because perfection is an all-too-familiar illusion that I battle with on a daily basis, so I know I’m aiming for the unobtainable.    

When I first got engaged, I was over-the-moon excited at the thought of Kevin and I spending our lives together.  We had been together for so long that I was thrilled to finally make our relationship official.  I felt like the luckiest girl on the planet.  And, while I wouldn’t consider myself to be the type to plan a wedding, we decided that we wanted to share this special time in our lives with our closest friends and loved ones.  Of course, there was also this side of me that had, over the course of the last decade and a half, seen most of my girlfriends get married and have the attention on them, so naturally I wanted that, too.      

At that time, I didn’t realize how unselfish of a decision sharing our moment with others was going to be, because what I didn’t see coming at me, like a damn freight train, was what all of this planning was going to entail.  One decision after another about everything from location, to venue, to food, to colors, to bedding, to flowers, to dresses.  Oh.  My.  God.  And, it never really stops.  The decision making just keeps coming.  In fact, I just received an email from my wedding coordinator about our final invoice.  Do I dare look?! 

I’ve gotten to the point where if I don’t receive a reply from a wedding vendor quickly, I’m happy because that means that I don’t have to deal with that particular matter for now.  So, I don’t even follow up with them anymore.  I just wait for them to get back with me on their own time, too jaded to really care.

So, now I can see how some women become complete and total bridezillas.  I understand how women are able to get so totally caught up in their wedding day that they forget why they are planning a wedding.  The wedding itself is a demanding distraction of colossal proportions.  And, since there are so many decisions to make, there are going to be disagreements among those involved.  You simply cannot make everyone happy.  With this in mind, I give a lot of credit to all of my married friends that have gone through this, and a) still had a wedding, and b) kept their sanity.  In fact, I found a shirt on Pintrest the other day that said, “Engagement, When People Stop Being Polite and Start Getting Real".  I couldn’t have said it any better myself. 

I’ll admit, there have been moments when I’ve questioned whether we should continue to have this wedding - fantasizing about just the 2 of us eloping to Italy, instead.  Quite simply, it hasn’t been as fun as I had pictured it.  My good friends and sister are nearly 2,000 miles away, so it’s been a bummer to miss out on the girly part of wedding planning, even if I don’t care too much about the details.  And, I love Kevin, but those of you that know him will understand that when I say ‘Chartreuse’, he says, ‘God bless you’.   

Regardless, this entire year-long process really made me learn and think a great deal about myself, my fiancĂ©, my friends and my family.  Some of those realizations were really disappointing.  For example, I learned that I have no idea how to put on fake eyelashes, and I'm kind of afraid to try them.  More importantly, other realizations were gifts and assurances that I never would have had without this experience.  I've had some friendships grow tremendously over the last year, and I've received a great deal of support from friends that I never expected it from.  It has meant a lot.
Either way, with every decision and experience that the past year has brought, I’ve come to understand that getting married is a true rite of passage.  I no longer have to figure out life on my own because I’ll have Kevin by my side to support and love me along the way.  He will always be there to put a smile on my face and tell me everything is going to be okay…even if I can’t make up my mind about whether to wear a veil, or not.