A couple of people have asked how wedding preparations are going. I have to say that I wonder what the big deal is. It’s been easy, but then Melanie and I have two things going for us. First, our motto is simplicity. We have no illusions that we are royalty and so we’re not planning some elaborate event to pretend that she’s a princess and I’m her prince. Second, we both have very similar tastes and neither are attached too much to any particular idea. A third thing (I know I said two) is that we just want to enjoy ourselves.
So far we’ve got most big things planned. We have a hall, a caterer, photographer, her dress, my tux, the wedding bands, her maid of honor and dress, my best man and his tux, invitations are out, we’ve registered at several places, I have our wedding web page done (at Melanie’s web site). We still have to order our cake, get flowers, pick the ceremony music, and reserve the honeymoon. Still, with four months to go, we’re relaxed and feeling good. It’s funny that our parents have been very laid back as well, reluctant to intrude on our planning.
The worst part will be moving into a new place just as we’re getting ready for the wedding. The most difficulty has been with the planning of the shower, which is funny because we’re not the ones planning it. I think if we were, it wouldn’t be a big deal either.
Obviously, as we get closer to the actual date, all those little things that need to be done will begin cropping up and we’ll be busier, but I certainly don’t think we’ll have “problems” per se. We’re both just too easygoing.
Update: I forgot to mention something that happened at the parish wedding music workshop yesterday. They hold these sessosn twice per year to let couples hear the music so they can pick what they want. It was the usual stuff: the marches by Wagner and Mendelsohn. Pachelbel Canon in D. They even had the “Masterpiece Theatre” music. Melanie elbowed me for doing my Alistair Cooke impression.
At one point, the female trumpeter was explaining that she could add an improv fanfare between whatever prelude music they had for the bridal party procession and the processional music for the bride herself. She said something to the effect of “Sorry grooms, but there’s no fanfare for you. The ceremony is about the bride. You can have the reception.” What?!
This is just the kind of idiotic statement that leads people to have stupid ideas about what Christian marriage is about and it’s coming from the parish. If the ceremony is all about the bride, then why don’t I catch up with her at the reception? Because it’s about us.
A big reason why so many marriages fail is because couples have unrealistic expectations of marriage. They think it’s going to be some kind of romantic fairy tale, that the brides are all princesses and the grooms are their Prince Charmings. Sorry folks, but neither is true. Marriage is not some movie romance where they live happily ever after. It’s work. It’s hard work. Love isn’t just for when you’re in your pretty white dress and everyone is oohing and aahing over you (Doesn’t anyone remember the story of Narcissus anymore?), but it’s also when your spouse is not feeling well, the kids are feeling worse, and you’re up at 2 am changing diapers or getting bottles, while you worry about paying the stack of bills sitting on your desk. That’s what love is.
If we insist on creating these fairy tales and unrealistic expectations of marriage and treating our spouses as accessories, not lifelong companion-saints/partners-in-life/loves-of-our-lives, is it any surprise people bolt at the first sign of trouble?