I had high hopes for this blog…I was certain that it would detail the hilarity, insanity and anxiety involved in putting all of your resources, time and effort into creating the perfect wedding day.
And yet, here I am…67 days from the big day and I have only a few sporadic posts to show for our 17 months of engagement. Despite my expectations…life did not come to a halt so that Andrew and I could carefully and patiently detail our entire day. As a matter of fact, life sped up..like whoa. Andrew had school on top of his full time job and his part time job…which is me. Meanwhile my job, my high maintenance family, my obsession with Pinterest and my intense love for sleep left me very little time to plan let alone write about planning.
Our engagement has been….so very interesting. I hate that there is not a more appropriate term in the English language to really describe the emotion, memories and humor behind the engagement thus far. But there isn’t, I checked. We’ve learned a lot, encountered disagreements and challenges we never expected, yelled, screamed, slammed doors (well I did) and loved each other even more with every day. I’m disappointed that it wasn’t all detailed here, not because I am convinced other people will want to read it but because it would have been such an incredible way to capture those memories.
The good news is…I’ve carved out plenty of time right now to do what I do best…create a list
The Top 5 (Worst, Best and Everything in Between) Engaged Moments:
1. Financial Fights. Here’s the thing about getting engaged…it is a little bit like a practice run for being married. I mean, what is the difference between marriage and a really long relationship? Paperwork and a lot of hassle if you decide you can’t stand another minute together. While an engagement is much less permanent than a marriage there is still some added hassle to end things…I mean, who wants to cancel a catering order for 200?? So what does all of this have to do with financial fights? I’m getting there, chill out. Once Andrew and I got engaged we began to look at each other a bit differently, suddenly the starry eyes are replaced with critical eyes. Eyes that are assessing exactly what obstacles will stand in the way of marital bliss. For example…his freight train snoring. It didn’t take long for us both to land on our drastically different spending habits. I mean life is too damn short not to buy that Coach purse for me and that Lacoste button up for him and what good is buying fabulous clothes, accessories and beauty products if you’re not going to go out and show it off. Obviously, Andrew has a different view on the whole thing, like…. maybe we should make sure we pay our mortgage first. Party pooper. And so…we fought about things we did, wanted to or shouldn’t have bought. We fought about money made and money saved and every time we discuss sitting down and hammering out a budget we both find something else more important that we MUST do!
2. Road Warriors. There was a span of 3 weeks this past summer that Andrew and I spent ricocheting across the mid-west. Road trips with the one you love are a blast…for the first 28 minutes. After that…the realization that you are stuck in a vehicle with limited choices of music, limited topics of discussion and all of each other’s bodily gases for an extended period of time starts to sink in. Andrew and I’s marathon vacation began with a trip to my parents’ lake home…we left late one evening and stopped halfway in Blue Springs, MO. We stayed in a MOtel (not to be confused with a HOtel) at which I am certain several murders took place. The bed forced our togetherness as it’s middle was firmly and permanently suck in….after 3 hours in the car together we really got to snuggle. Next up, was Iowa City for a friends wedding; while I was blessed with a HOtel on this visit I was tormented by Andrew’s inability to fall asleep without turning into a freight train. The result? I spent two nights sleeping in a bath tub, the only place I could escape the rumbling of his nostrils. Finally, we set out for Andrew’s home town of Pueblo, Colorado to visit his family. We were only about 15 minutes into our journey on I-80 West when I became absolutely certain that I could not spend another minute in the car. The music was old, the conversation was repetitive and Andrew’s farts were becoming intolerable. We encountered another less than legit MOtel on our journey west and I am fairly certain I set a new record for pee stops, but we made it. By the time the whirlwind was over and we were back home and living out our routines I found myself missing Andrew’s constant presence; I missed the mindless chatter, the made-up and desperate road trip games and most of all the feeling of sharing our days so entirely together. That trip alone contains some of my most favorite memories of the man I will soon call my husband.
3. Damn Drama. 2012 was a strange year for my family. A lot of heavy things happened and a lot of things changed rapidly. I was raised in a family in which we were always involved and exceptionally aware of what was happening to each of us at any moment in time. I think there were many times this year in which Andrew fell to the background as I participated in the family whirlpool, and again, he suffered when my mood or actions were affected by things happening within my family. The most wonderful thing about it all? He. Never. Wavered. He never complained, pouted, moped or even hinted that he felt cheated or insignificant. When I cried, he held me. When I yelled, he listened. When I couldn’t pull myself out of a mood, he found a way. I believe that now, on the other end of a very long family struggle, I can say with certainty that Andrew and I are prepared and adept at enduring. He radiates strength and compassion and even as a try to finish this sentence I am overwhelmed (in the very best way possible) with the idea that I get to spend the rest of my life with someone like him. Ohhh that was so cheesy. But true
4. Holiday Hell. I spent Christmas day of 2012 vomiting profusely and alone. Andrew was in Colorado and my parents were hosting a few family members at their house. I was so ill that the very thought of getting into my car and driving the 30 minutes to my parents house made me have to throw up again. So, I spent the day unshowered, pajama clad and positively miserable. But as the sun set on that wicked day and I used prescription strength anti-nausea pills to drift off to sleep I found myself smiling….because Christmas 2012 marked Andrew and I’s last Christmas spent apart!! Due to the distance in which his family lives from us he has spent every Christmas traveling to see them while I couldn’t stand the idea of leaving my own. But…after saying “I DO” the every other year compromise becomes effective and we will be making those trips together. Which means….Christmas 2013 will be our very first Christmas married AND together.
5. Perfect & Poignant. I have an unnatural obsession with moments…more specifically, the way in which a moment would play out in words. Every day I find myself searching for those poignant snapshots in time, that perfect interaction that would flow so effortlessly into words and punctuation on a page; if I can’t find them then I am trying to create them and when I can’t create them….it hurts. It is definitely a character flaw and unfortunately it leads to a lot of discontentment and restlessness. But, when I find one of those moments…its incredible. Lucky for me, one happened with Andrew just recently…on Wednesday of last week, while I was rushing out of the house to get to a doctor’s appointment I managed to slice not one but two fingers on a rusty old razor blade. Lots of blood, lots of pain and a tetanus shot later and I was left with two very tender and useless fingers. Unfortunately, the last time I had showered was Tuesday morning. By Thursday night I had enough dry shampoo in my hair to cause a dust storm and that itchy unclean feeling had really sunk in, but the idea of allowing water, let alone shampoo, to enter my wounds was more than I could stand. So, I asked Andrew to give me a bath and he did. He washed my hair carefully and meticulously and he washed my body…everyone can take a deep breath because this is not a “sexual” story, I promise I’m not going there….the most wonderful part of this whole experience was that while it was loving and tender it was not sensual or sexual. Once I was clean (thank the heavens!!) he helped me into my pajamas, replaced my bandages, combed my hair and tucked me into bed. I fell asleep warm and clean and relishing in the love that radiated from those 30 minutes spent together….its the kind of memory that will get us through some very dark days.