3 and a half weeks ago I got engaged to my Bear – my best friend, my supporter, the man who has my back, who fell in love with me and not the idea of the me – the idea of me being what I do for a living or project. Rather I am blessed enough to be loved by someone, who I love back, who sees the fragile, gentle parts of me too and loves those parts tenderly.
Our formal engagement came after setting a wedding date – we had too many faraway friends & family members to do this any other way if we wanted there to be a chance of them being with us. So, for about 10 weeks I walked around with the knowledge there was a hoped for date….about 8 weeks ago, there was an official speaking to my parents and on the 15th June there was the official proposal. A thought out, romantic, overwhelming spoil of a day – one of those days that you wish you could get lost in for longer than the permitted 24 hours.
I can’t wait to get married. I can’t wait to be MRS BEAR. It has been truly scary having to confront my wedding phobia. There it is out loud: Marriage doesn’t scare me as much as weddings themselves do. These past few weeks I have had to confront this phobia because what I think does count. My amazing parents (who have been married for 40 years) and sister in law have taken on the task of “wedding planning team” in the province where we are getting married.
I had to make a commitment to not be an ostrich and to be willing to talk about things. So this is how we did it. We had a sanction on any wedding talk except for dedicated times. We enforced this with family, with friends and with well-wishers. This past weekend I flew to spend time with my family and sign off with them on the details: you know fabrics, chapel, photographer, reception venue, DJ, décor….it was a really busy weekend of details. Details which overwhelm and scare me!
Friends popped over to say congrats and hellos and asked me if I was excited about the wedding. I got text messages asking if I was excited about my dress. I have had people want to know if all the details are on track. We have had to negotiate the tight rope of the wedding guest list- something I guess only preludes the table seating plan….and in the midst of it all, as much as choosing who to marry is a big deal what has struck me time and time again is that I am more excited about being married to my Bear than I am about the details. Every single service provider was concerned about my reaction to rain or to something not being perfect. Our wedding day is about us being a part of community of family and friends and honouring God and them for the people that we are today, being able to stand and say I do.
DO I think that our wedding is going to be lovely? YES. Do I want him to think that I look beautiful? Yes. Do I want people to have fun? Yes – More than all of this though I want there to be love and hope and kindness and joy present. I want us to be surrounded by a community of people who choose to be there- not just on the day we get married, but in the years ahead. I want us to be talking about marriage and what it means more than talking about colour schemes. I want us to be laying firm foundations with wise input for the biggest adventure of our lives.
Really, I am serious when I say to you the thing I am most excited about is being Mrs Bear: More than lace; more than colour schemes; more than worrying about the weather. I am excited about the Marriage part. The wedding seems small in comparison.