Monday, March 14, 2011
Little did I know that that little question was just the beginning of a million other questions that would also need answers.
From what color should this be, to how will I ever be a good wife or mother? How do you leave your parents and cleave to another person when all they have been is great to you? Where do you get flowers? How do you say yes to a dress? Where are you going to live? How do you still have friends after you plan a wedding? How do you meet a thousand new people, new family, change churches, get a new small group, move, say goodbye to living with your brother (s), help your beloved get through nursing school and keep your job and your mind? Oh and blog?
I said "of course" to Luke Stigers on November 20th. They day after I returned from Belgium.
Yesterday, we received our first wedding gift. A beautiful banner with the words "Come to Me" and "You will find Rest for your Souls" hand-made in a gorgeous fabric mosaic assembled in a beautiful one-of-a-kind design. This rendered me speechless. Tear-less even. To avoid complete ugly-cry meltdown, I had to kinda pretend it didn't slice me to the quick and stitch me up at the same time. It was so right-on for us. For both of us. We have both had restless roads up until this point. And the Savior who offers us Rest is always a source of overwhelming joy to me. Tastes of it occur daily from my dear mom helping me fold thousands of clothes, to my dad figuring out the southwest rapid rewards system for OUR honeymoon tickets on HIS birthday. To new mother-in-law who slaves in a kitchen for days to allow her community to come and love on me, someone they have never even met. To the amazing Liz who designed the most gorgeous wedding invitations I've ever seen for free in her "free time" between about 10:30 pm and 1am after she started her new job.
Is there any end to the blessings? Sometimes it seems not fair at all. Surreal, is what Luke said today. It is completely crazy. Maybe this time is a well-ordained equipment for harder days to come, when the flowers are dead, and you are once again too fat to fit into that dress, and your children start to ask the same questions you have and you are only semi-sure of the answers. Weddings are weird things. Rites of passage, that those who elope miss out on. The dynamics, the decisions, the binding of two people together, not just at their point of contact, but at their roots and beyond as well. Liz and many others may feel more invested into my future marriage now that she has worried with me over some details of it. As I did for hers. The success of her marriage is personal to me because I tore strips of fabric for her.
As an aside, the emerging theme of fabric continues to strike me, as it has in other weddings. For hers, we tied strips of cloth on clothesline to compliment the beautiful backdrop of fall, we used burlap and lace and other tactile things to seal that day. For mine, there is the banner, assembled into Gods Word over us, and a hand-made quilt from a grandmother. Fabrics. Pieced together at a pace that is easy. A pace that conversation happens over. That love grows over.
When you outsource this stuff, when you just write a check for it, somehow those dear to us miss out. On a chance to sew, to tie, and to bind us together. To provide preemptive support for the days to come described by the wise as "better than you could imagine and worse than you can imagine".
As a long-time singleton it's difficult for me to not consistently apologize for this time. To apologize for feeling stressed when others would welcome these million decisions. To apologize for being giddy and talking about it ad nauseum to those who are well past this time in their lives and into the nitty gritty times who would also much rather be picking out table napkins and song lists. To apologize for the biblical-ness of marriage and walk that line of celebrating this wonderful, sharpening and good and beneficial path in life and also acknowledging the sting of singleness and the ones dear to me who struggle with ceremonies that point out "incompleteness" or where it speaks of "not being good for man to be alone".
I am thrilled to be taking this next step. With all the unknowns, the joys the sorrows, the reality of living with another person, another sinner and their process, forEVER. I struggle not to spreadsheet it for fear I will back out after the risk assessment. It will require everything. You will live for another all the time. You will sacrifice yourself, and it will be the best thing you ever do.
If you are a praying sort, please pray for Rest for our Souls. For rest enough to somehow find the energy to enjoy this time, and to keep food on the table while trying to plan and be present for a milestone event. While trying to maintain graciousness to all who will be a part of it, to enjoy it fully while being sensitive to those who long for this day to come to them as well, and the freedom to celebrate lavishly while there are so many in need and destruction.
May this celebration unite us together so we may fight darkness as more compassionate, more healed, more whole, more loving people.
Who blog more.