We planned everything just right. We both agreed that this was a commitment between the two of us and this most important ceremony would be about our promise to one another and not about being a spectacle for others to bear witness to. The plan was simple; travel to the nearest legal state, book a nice hotel (since it would also serve as the official honeymoon spot), find a private and cozy space, dress up for each other (and no one else), recite our vows, and be officially wed. I found the perfect dress and she found just the right suit. We wouldn’t allow each other to see until the moment we revealed ourselves to one another on that very important day. The hotel was booked soon after and we conspired with a friend to serve as our officiant. Everything seemed to be in place and ready to go. We prepared for the road trip of our lives.
Road tips have always been a fun experience for me. Road trips with her are my favorite! This one would be nothing short of amazing, I just knew. We packed up the car and made our way. As we made the long trek across four state lines we talked, we planned our future, we laughed, we watched movies, we played games. This is why I am marrying her. Life with her is a life truly lived to the fullest. I enjoy the simplest moments to the very core. We finally arrived at our destination. We pulled into the fancy breezeway and our car doors were opened by gallantly dressed gentlemen helping us out of the car. The fairly tale had already begun. By the time we reached our room our bags had already been delivered. My dress shielded inside the pillowy white garment bag hanging prominently on the closet door and her suit safely tucked in its own zippered vault hanging right next to it. As the door closed behind us we both seemed to simultaneously process the magnitude of what we were about to do. We held each other in a silent moment and gently kissed. Not saying a word, we took in the moment. A few moments later we embarked out the door in search of the perfect spot. The accommodations we chose were so centrally located in such a beautiful area that it took just a quick stroll around the corner and we had found our perfect place. Now, since that was taken care of, we had the rest of the day to enjoy our last hours are single individuals. We had a wonderful romantic dinner and strolled around the area before we headed off to bed. With our special moment just hours away, we had to get plenty of rest.
We woke up to the sun just barely peeking over billowy clouds. My heart was so full of love and anticipation I thought it would burst before the hour arrived. She got ready before I did and headed down to the Café to wait for me. My aunt arrived and so did the photographer and our officiant. After make up and hair, they all worked in concert to get me into the straps and laces of my coquette and flowy dress. I made my way down the elevator and waited for the officiant to motion for me to approach. My aunt walked just ahead of me. As I walked out and around the corner, people stopped to comment; “congratulations!” I knew they were there and on autopilot I would thank them for their comments, but in reality, I was somewhere else. All I could think of was that just around the corner, there she stood waiting for me. As I got closer to where she was my legs began to betray me. I couldn’t feel the steps I was taking and as I caught a glimpse of her, I nearly forgot how to walk all together. I heard our wedding song softly playing and stopped, composed myself for just a second and found my balance once again. I slowly lifted my gaze and allowed my eyes to lock with hers. I was calm then. She always brings me such calm. As I approached her she smiled brighter. Her eyes sparkled in the morning sunlight as if she was its energy source. As we began to exchange our vows, although we carefully picked the words ahead of time, I couldn’t tell you what I said or what she said to me. It was so surreal. All I remember was taking in just how beautiful she was. All I experienced was being in awe of how the sunlight bounced off the strands of her hair in a way that seemed to just light up the whole world. All I could focus on was how lucky I felt that she would consent to walking by my side for the rest of her days. “I now pronounce you partners for life” I heard the officiant say. And with that, we gently kissed and the world around us faded into a blurry backdrop.
We spent the next hours with our photographer posing around town. It was a lot of fun. Folks would walk by clapping, congratulating. Some approached us for hugs and even words of wisdom. All the while, in the back of my mind, between serious and some not so serious poses, there was a tiny whisper reminding me; “she is now your wife!” The day could not have been more perfect. Soon after, we ventured out into the city to take in the sites as new wives.
Our day was absolutely special but what made it much more so was the fact that we both entered into this commitment with eyes wide-open full of realistic expectations. We have done the work and vowed to continue to put in the work that any healthy relationship truly requires. This wasn’t a romanticized notion that came to us on a whim. It was a well thought out commitment made to one another. With enough love to fill up this universe and respect to match, we embark on our lives together. Happily ever after!