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The One with the Things That Matter

6 Feb

On Saturday, the futhubs and I went to premarital counseling– which has been grand, btw.  Lots of vulnerability, often a lot of tears, and even discomfort when it comes to ‘digging down deep.’  It’s good stuff.  Real talk.  And incredibly humbling.  It’s not super easy to go in and lay all your problems on the table.  This is how we’ve been interacting.  This is what we’ve been fighting about lately.  This is what I said.  This is how I reacted (instead of responded).

I’m super thankful that our premarital counselors are such gracious people who also keep it real.  They’re really honest about the problems they’ve had (and still sometimes have) in their marriage and, in their honesty, remind the futhubs and I that we’re not crazy.  That we’re just as broken as anyone else.  That understanding requires compassion.  That love is a choice and it is healing.

Anyhow, after sharing with our counselors about how stressed we’ve both been, they asked us both to do this exercise.  “Close your eyes and imagine that the wedding planning is all done.  It’s the day after your wedding and you’re reflecting back on this whole wedding planning process.  What are the things that were really important?  In other words, in the whole scheme of things, what is important to you right now?  What do you value?”

This is what we said.  (Our counselor jotted these down).

Wedding Planning Values

Notice that neither one of us wrote a thing about napkin colors.  Or flowers.  Neither one of us wrote about trying to please our parents.  There was no mention of decorations, the guestbook, or attendant gifts.  Or ANYTHING TO DO WITH THE WEDDING ITSELF.  In fact, every single thing we said was a relational value.  We value our relationship as a couple and as a soon-to-be family.  We each value our relationship with the Lord and we want Him to be a part of this whole process.

These are the things that matter to me, to him, and to us.  Real life is right now.  And this is what’s important.

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In the wedding planning process, what are the main values that you’re holding onto?  (Or that you held onto?  Or that you wish you held onto?)

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The One with the Cocktail Hour Music Rant

24 Jan

Eff cocktail hour!” is what I found myself blaring at my amused futhubs as I pounded the Starbucks table with my fist.  I only swear when I’m absolutely livid (or in the depths of despair), so ‘eff’ seemed to suffice for this particular interjection.  Plus it sounds funny to me, so I can guarantee myself a smile at my own ridiculousness whenever I say it, which I just need sometimes.  But I digress…

Let’s rewind a little.  Tonight the futhubs and I interviewed a third DJ just for good measure.  And because– being a girl who always packs 15 different outfits for a week-long trip just in case— I enjoy variety and the option to choose.  He was a really nice guy and I really liked him.  The futhubs said so too.  Then again he’s said that about every other DJ we’ve met too.  (I think a part of it is because he’s quicker to see the best in people while I jump to categorizing all their flaws in my head.  I’m an awful person sometimes).  I found the first DJ to be reassuring albeit rather cocky and the second, unprofessional and dispassionate about his job.  (Impassionate?  Non-passionate?  Are any of these words?  I could totally google the answer to this right now, but I’m not going to!  Lalala, also #englishmajorfail).

Anyhow, something I really appreciated about DJ #3 is that he was eager to work around our budget– which, btw, we calculated correctly and held to for the first time.  (Sigh.  Harsh lesson: learned.  More on that in another post).  He even suggested super helpful things like cutting out music for the cocktail hour and asking our tech-savvy friends to run sound for the ceremony instead of hiring him to do it, since both of those things would put us over our budget.  I love that he was eager to help without being pushy.  Also, it helps that our friends used him for their wedding so there’s already a level of trust there.  Anyway, blahblahblah– it was a good meeting.

The futhubs and I stayed put after he left to discuss how we felt about it.  I heard myself saying things like, “I liked him, but we wouldn’t be able to have music for the cocktail hour with him.  If we went with DJ #2 we could totally afford it.”  And then my brilliant fiance pointed out: “Yknow, I can’t even remember a wedding where they had music during cocktail hour.”  I heard a pane of glass just shatter in my brain.  He’s so right!  I’ve been to plenty of weddings (I think we went to 8 in the past year alone) and even if they had mood music playing during cocktail hour, I’ve never ever noticed.  And I can totally remember weddings that I know for sure didn’t have music, but I was just as happy gabbing away with old friends and downing stuffed mushrooms.

Appetizers we've attacked sans music-- they taste just as delightful! Trust.

And the thing is, I’d never even thought about having music during cocktail hour.  The thought had never occurred to me (read: it wasn’t at all important to me).  Until, that is, we started interviewing DJs and they started sliding all these price quotes across the table and wooing me with coffee to make me think that I needed it.  And badly.  But the truth is, people come to your wedding to celebrate with you– to rejoice at the fact that you’ve found love and you intend to spend the rest of your life loving someone else unconditionally (and apologizing when that fails at times).  They don’t come for cocktail hour music!  And they’re not gonna miss it!  At all!  There are so many things that people won’t care about but the wedding industry tricks us all into thinking that they’re important (or maybe just me because I’m impressionable and trusting!  Gah!).  Ahhh, ridiculous!

And so I say again: eff cocktail hour!  Eff cocktail hour expectations and eff obligatory wedding things that you’re ‘supposed to do!’  Huzzah!  I’m free!  I’m going to bed.