This past weekend, we hopped provincial lines to attend my cousin’s wedding. (Congratulations Tiffany and Andrew!)
I have been to quite a few weddings over the past few years. I am right at that age where my friends and my husband’s friends are getting married. Additionally, Dan and I have been lucky to attend many weddings as photographers too (didn’t know I did that? I do! If you’re looking for a wedding photographer, be sure to contact me!).
Whether I am attending a wedding as a guest or am doing it for work, weddings always leave me wishful and pensive.
Before getting married, I wanted a wedding so bad! When I was dating Dan, I also wanted a marriage, but I really wanted a wedding. Like really really! It took all that I had not to be one of those girls who planned out her entire wedding before she knew who she would marry. I always thought about what colours would look best together and what style wedding dress I wanted. I would daydream about veils and whispered vows. I exercised incredible restraint by not purchasing every wedding magazine available before my finger was adorned with a rock.
When we went to weddings, all of this became amplified.
I would cry at weddings because the bride was so beautiful and the groom was swept off his feet and because no vow uttered was ever as true and as deep as the vows I was witnessing. I would cry because weddings saturate the air with so much love that it becomes hard to breathe. I would cry because I so desperately wanted all of that for me.
The beautiful white dress. The doting groom. The elated family.
The fairy tale ending.
And then the day came. With a ring on my finger and a wedding planned (which was much more stressful then my daydreams led me to believe), I had the dress. I had the groom. I walked down the aisle and said my I dos.
The fairy tale ended, the ever after began.
I am so different from the girl I was before getting married. I wonder if people from my life before Dan would even know the person I am now. I grew up. I changed my priorities. I learned to live with another person and experienced how raw love can be. The adventures Dan and I used to share while dating are distant memories and nothing like our Saturday nights at home with two kids. With marriage, life got real. Life got hard. Life got awesome. Life became shared.
Now, when I find myself suffocated by the love-filled room of a wedding, I still cry. I still sit and think and dream. I re-evaluate my marriage and silently recommit as the vows are whispered. I place my hand upon my husband’s while simultaneously bouncing the newborn and shushing the toddler, and I think about this life we share. This so-not-a-fairy-tale life. This perfect, shared life. My heart fills with gratitude for all that I have. And I find myself getting excited for the new bride and groom; excited for everything that comes after the wedding.
What a beautiful, joy-filled place to live out the ever after.
What do weddings make you think about?