On Being Engaged and Getting Married


A week from yesterday, my friends and family will start arriving. Each day leading up to Saturday, May 14, I will be joined by those closest to me. 

It's going to be crazy and insane and quick. Really quick. 

So while I have a free moment (which hasn't happened often as of late), I wanted to write down a few thoughts about being engaged, because I'm interested to see how my perception may or may not change in just over a week from now.

A few days ago, my alarm clock went off, I opened my eyes, stretched, and immediately was hit with what I described to my friend Audra as a "small feeling of intense panic." 

Holy crap, I thought. I'm going to live with a boy. A BOY. 

I'll be honest here and say that I have no idea how this is going to go. Sometimes I imagine it going well--us making dinner and watching a baseball game on TV or a movie from Netflix. Other times I picture a different scene--me going crazy and being, well, me, and Jordan wondering what on earth he's gotten himself into. Either way, we're stuck together.

While Jordan and I were dating, I never really allowed myself to think about getting married. I didn't want to hurt more if we broke up. I realize this is silly, and you can't completely guard yourself from pain, but talking or thinking about marriage just wasn't something we did often. But now that I am 9 days away from the marriage ceremony, I suppose I should start seriously thinking about it. 

I'm used to Jordan going home at night. I'm used to calling him to see if we're going to eat dinner at his place or mine. I'm used to having the entire closet to myself. I'm used to coming home after work and having time (however short) to myself to sit in silence or turn the radio up loud or just do whatever I feel like. And I'm not trying to say that I think once I'm married I won't be able to do what I want, but it's just going to be different.

Being engaged, for me at least, has changed our relationship. Instead of dating, moving along through the calendar together, making occasional hypothetical comments about a vague "future," we're moving toward something--a concrete place of stability. Yet the engagement is a waiting period, and it's been difficult because I haven't been able to really get my things organized or plan anything past May. I'm sort of in limbo.

A friend recently joked with me that I'm acting like the world is going to stop on May 14. And while I don't at all believe comments about how my life won't truly start until I get married or that my life isn't complete until I find "the one," being engaged has placed a firm date in my future--one that I am still unable to look past. One that will change me in ways I can't know right now. And that scares me a little bit, but it's also exciting. It's like graduating, I think. The idea of being free from the restraints of school and homework was so strange that I was unable to fathom what that would be like. It scared me, but it was also exciting.

And now that I've been out of school for a few years, I can look back and say that it's been great--strange and difficult at times, yes, but I'm doing it. 

I'm sure that's what marriage will be like for me. I realize this probably all sounds a bit silly to someone who's married or even just someone who doesn't think about things like I do. But this is how I feel about it, and later I'll look back and hopefully be able to say that it's great, though strange and difficult, and that I'm doing it.

To me, marriage isn't something that offers a way out. I don't want to become a statistic, and it scares me that there is no guarantee that it will work out. But I can say that I want to commit to Jordan, and honestly I believe he's the person I'm supposed to be with. I want to work with him on our marriage and never have the D word even be something we mention in our house. 

I'm not idealistic enough to think it won't be hard. I don't imagine us floating away on a cloud together. Our relationship has been hard, and we've fought and argued and had to deal with difficult circumstances. But I've learned so much about Jordan and about myself, and I feel confident in us

I'm weird. Random. Awkward. Loud. Social. Competitive. Impatient. Emotional. Some might say crazy.

And he gets me.

He's quiet. Introverted. A thinker. Slight procrastinator. Stubborn. Problem solver. Sometimes unreadable. 

And I get that.

I can't wait for my friends and family to come celebrate with me. Many of them will meet Jordan for the first time, and there will be people from his side that I've never met before. I'll wear my dress, and he'll wear his tux, and we'll smile for pictures and eat cake. We'll dance and laugh, and in the end we'll drive away together.

I'm looking forward to it with only a small feeling of intense panic. Because holy CRAP. I'm getting married. And then I'm going to live with a BOY.
Anonymous said...

This is beautiful.

That is all.


Kate Kirchner said...

This has been my favorite post so far. You are wonderful Amanda and it is such a gift to know you. love.