Do you ever have an idea as you're trying to fall asleep?
I mean a great idea- something that makes you almost compelled to get up, switch on the light, and write it down before you forget? Except only, you're all curled up with your future husband and the dog has sandwiched your legs in place, and the kitten is lurking around somewhere and you're liable to tread on her if you go anywhere because damnit, she's dark and she blends in.
That happened to me last night, and I think is was relating to writing a post today, since I didn't write anything yesterday (and was apparently wracked by guilt, if my sudden pre-sleep lightning bolts were anything to go by). Regardless, I can't remember what it was that I was thinking about so I'll have to default to my backup plan, which is something I've been musing over lately, and that is, as the title suggests:
Why get married?
Now, I don't want you to take this the wrong way.
It's just that I've never been that girl. I've never had the dream of the white dress, or what favors I was going to give people. Hell, I didn't even know what favors were until I started looking into this wedding business.
Ok so maybe there's a distinction I need to make here: Not why enter into a marriage, per se, but why get weddinged.
My mantra, until I met Nic, was: I will be with someone for at least 4 years before I consider getting married.
And even then, two years into my last relationship, I wasn't really considering it. I suppose that's what happens when you're with the wrong person. In fact, I'd never even seen the point. I had so many gay friends as I went through Uni, and identified as queer myself that there was a possibility that I could end up with a woman, and therefore, unable to marry. So, my Undergrad-Uni self said: Meh, why bother, it's just a piece of paper.
But then Nic comes along, and we're talking about the future and about the inevitable fact that we'll get married sometime (and keep in mind this is only months into our relationship) and that hey, we should do it now! Because nothing's going to change, and whether we get engaged now, or later, doesn't really make a difference because it's going to happen hey, and you only live once. So we went out, found a ring and got engaged.
I'm simplifying the long discussions we had into a couple of stupid lines here but you get the point, right?
Here was this man who had traveled across the world to try and start something unknown, to be with me, in a country he never expected to live in, let alone in his girlfriend's mother's house (now that was awesome fun times)... who understood me, and looked after me, and loved me, and we loved (I'm trying to find a way to reword this sentence, because the past-tense implies all sorts of things, and is a little too ominous for my liking, so please know this goes through past-present-future, it's just grammatically doing my brain in right now) each other, and were (are) this amazing team, and yes, I wanted (want) to get married!
So I've been thinking over what getting weddinged means to us. I think it's hard sometimes to distinguish between the ceremony and the reception part. A lot of the time, when we talk about it, we're talking about having this awesome party where everyone rocks out and has a good time, and that's what we want our wedding to be. And I think in a way, we're missing out on seeing the really beautiful part, which is that moment when we tell everybody there that we love each other, and that we promise to continue doing so forever. Having thought about this yesterday while driving around, I think this is becoming more important for me- this affirmation of forever, that we're in this together. This public declaration that we're a team, and we're together, and y'all who don't like it better get over it.
And then we'll have an awesome party, and rock it out.
I think so many women get caught up on the details of the wedding- and I think I may have said this before, and it's something said around most of the circle of blogs and wedding sites that I visit... But I've done my best to avoid some wedding sites for exactly this reason. I think for a lot of women, their 'why get married?' answer, is so they can throw a wedding; wear the dress, decorate the tables, dress the bridesmaids, send the invites, etc etc etc. Am I superficially judging people? Possibly. Is it justified? I think so.
I don't know if I've answered my own question. I also don't know if there's an answer. Why do we want to get weddinged?
-To make a promise that we'll love each other forever.
-To have a rocking party.
Everything else that's awesome and happens on the day is just a bonus. (And, yes, this includes actually 'getting married' to Nic, which we're still debating whether we'll do 15 mins before the ceremony starts, or on the day of the wedding at all, or whether we will have already done it. I know for a lot of people, especially on some blogs I read, people say: "What's important is that you'll be married at the end of the night!" Well, yes, that is important, but I think I'm putting less weight on the actual signing of a legal document than I am of making that vow.) Maybe.