~Our Renewals~ Hey my WBC family! I've been a little hush- hush lately. Our 14th wedding ann...
Hello again everyone!
After being away for over a year (disgraceful, I know) I'm back...and with BIG news!
As you'll know from my previous posts, Carl and I got engaged last year on May 2nd. Since then we have enjoyed a year of engagement with minimal wedding planning. Obviously I've continued to feed my OCD, collect wedding magazine cutouts and ponder over the style of my dress and flowers, but up until recently I had bowed down to the fact that our wedding wouldn't be for a couple of years, and taken a back seat in all of the wedding planning hoopla. (I had to, or my excitement/ impatience would have driven me well and truly crazy!)
My Fiance and I are currently living in England (I'm originally from Vermont but have been in Liverpool studying for my bachelors degree since 2008) and had agreed once we got engaged that we'd like to wait until we're financially stable back in the states to have our dream wedding. This meant that after graduation (July 2011) we'd move to Vermont, readjust, begin saving, and plan for the big day in July of 2013. No problem, right? ...Wrong! Anyone who is in a relationship with someone from another country knows the ridiculous number of limitations and pain in the bum restrictions you face as a couple. First of all, we found out that in order for Carl to make the big (permanent) move to Vermont we'd either have to already be married or get married within 30 days of our plane touching US soil. I wasn't comfortable with having to arrange a wedding in America from across the world in England etc, so we decided that the best thing to do (given the circumstances) was to get married in England (secretly, for immigration purposes) and continue to plan for the big white wedding in 2013.
Being totally honest, this HAUNTED me and the idea of having to walk down the aisle in 2013 with my father as an already married women absolutely killed me. I cried many a night knowing that I'd never get to experience my wedding exactly as I'd dreamed about as a little girl, or as everyone else does...and to be truthful, I should have braced myself for this. In the 8 years of our relationship, Carl and I have always faced restrictions because of nationality and distance, or complications in making our dreams as a couple come true. We've had to be unbelievably patient and work exceptionally hard in order to get where we are today. For example, it took 5 years before we were both able to live in the same country and see each other every day (previous to that we saw each other for a month a year). Don't get me wrong, I'm thankful and I believe that without all of that our relationship probably wouldn't be as strong as it is today... all of the tears, struggles, and lonely nights, over the years have forced me to adjust to never experiencing things the conventional way... but I just wished that our wedding day, the BIGGEST most special day of our lives, would be different and would be 'normal.' I didn't want to have to get married in England two years before our 'wedding' and I didn't want to accept the fact that, unfortunately, there were no other options.
Ever since I was little my mom has always said to me 'life hands you lemons...you make lemonade' and I thank God for her optimism. I was speaking with her about how I'd have to get married in England before Carl and I moved back to America and she reminded me that although we wouldn't be able to do things the way everyone else does it wouldn't take away or devalue the big wedding at all. She reminded me that after all, we'd still be surrounded by friends and family and we'd still be celebrating our lives together and the devotion to one another...but instead of saying our vows for the first time, we'd be renewing them.
A couple of weeks ago I was discussing with my future mother-in-law mine and Carl's pans to get married in a registrars office this September in order to allow for the necessary paperwork to be completed in time for August 2012 (I've been accepted onto a masters level teaching certification course so we'll be in England an additional year now). She listened intently and looked at wedding bands with me but didn't say much. I knew she was wishing that Carl and I didn't want to keep our marriage a secret and how we'd change our minds and celebrate with family and friends. (we'd discussed it time and time again, and I was adamant that I did not want anyone to know as I was convinced it would detract from our big wedding at home - our dream wedding) Eventually we were diverted slightly and stumbled on to the topic of my graduation this July and how for the first time (in nearly 9 years) both of the families would get to meet face to face and spend a week in the same country. One thing lead to another when she asked me how I would feel about getting married in July while my family was here rather than in September. At first "HELL NO! I don't want a big deal made of this!!" popped into my head, but I decided maybe I ought to let it sink in before I answered. After all, it is the day that Carl and I become husband and wife and it would be selfish not to include ANY family.
To make a long story short... after loads of encouragement from my mother to embrace this special day for what it is - our true wedding day, the time when we become husband and wife...I've come to realize that this IS something that should be celebrated instead of silenced. So what if we don't get to do things the conventional way, the way that everyone else does? It's still our wedding day and it's still special. Furthermore, this gives us the opportunity to celebrate with close family and friends from the UK who may not be able to afford the big journey across the ocean. And Mom made a valid point when she said "Do you know how many people would kill to be able to have TWO weddings?"
We are getting married on Saturday, July 16 surrounded by 25 of our closest family and friends in the UK. Although the big white wedding is still in Vermont in July 2013, I am finding that I'm unbelievably excited! In just 40 days I get to walk down the aisle towards my very best friend and say 'I do.' I feel blessed, I feel happy and I can't wait to share it with the world :)