I’m getting married tomorrow.
We drove to Town Clerk’s office yesterday to apply for a marriage license. We picked up our license this morning and tomorrow evening, a Justice of the Peace will be signing that document with us.
It’s all happening really, really fast.
In the past month, after we first formulated the plan for marriage, I’ve had a lot of time to consider how I really wanted to go about this. See, for the “longest time”, I’ve always just knew that I wanted a wedding, a dress, and a group of people I loved.
It was only when the idea of marriage became a reality rather than a fantasy that I realised: I don’t want any of those things.
First, what is a wedding but an expensive waste of time and money? I was never the type to enjoy throwing parties. And when I got to do some brief research into venues and receptions, one of the most inexpensive places was still charging $250 a plate.
My dress. I recall the time I spent $300+ of my parents’ money on my grad (Canadian prom) dress when I was 17. It made me feel beautiful, like Cinderella.
I still have that dress. I still love that dress and I still treasure the feeling it gave me, but the point is that I was seventeen. I tried it on when I was 23… I felt ridiculous.
At twenty-eight years old, my dreams and goals have changed. I’m no longer a girl who would be excited at the thought of donning a beautiful gown. I feel beautiful in sweat pants and a t-shirt. I still have gorgeous, fancy dresses, but I have them because I like to wear them for various occasions, but they hold no sway or power over me. I found my sense of beauty within myself.
It helps, too, to have a person who thinks you are beautiful all of the time.
The group of people I love? As I grew older, the number of people I love and care about have dwindle down to a select few.
In my younger years, I sought a sense of belonging in my friends. I was desperate to belong to a group of people who I could identify with. I was desperate to be understood.
Back then, I would have wanted all these people to bear witness to my happiness. Now? My sense of self has become more solid. I have an identity all on my own and the need to belong departed with my youth. Now the thought of a group of people bearing witness to my happiness feels intrusive. I feel that even though I love these people, my happiness is my own and I wish to keep it my own.
Calling a list of Justice of the Peace people the other day–more than half the people I spoke to expressed surprise, and then judgement, when I announced that I would be having an informal, practical ceremony. Is it really that uncommon these days? Or am I simply living in an area that is not progressive enough?
So far I have only told my family and one close friend of our plans. It was more out of respect for them than out of the need to share. I felt that it wouldn’t matter to me what they thought..
But then my mother responds to my email and tells me that she is happy. In the email she’s attached photos of a jewelry box she purchased for my wedding gift. The words wedding gift broke me. This simple sentiment from my mother–who has a difficult time expressing love–drove me to happy tears.
And now here I am, posting a long, gif-tastic post about nothing in particular. Except that tomorrow, I will be married.