By the time you read this post, I will have said my vows. This is what I declared on my wedding day.
It seems surreal to stand up here, after all the years we’ve waited and all the discussions we’ve had… we’re finally getting married.
I started these vows many times and almost all of them began with a long speech about how we came to be getting married right now, after the birth of our second child and the purchase of our home, all the major steps we’re supposed to take AFTER getting married. But that is not what this is about. Right here, right now. This is about US and what we mean to each other. How much we love each other, and the commitment we want to make to each other.
I will say this: standing here today, I’m glad we waited. I’m glad we did things in the wrong order because after all we’ve been through, I have no doubt that this is the right choice, that YOU are the right choice, that you are the person I want to marry. I don’t wonder if we are compatible, or if we can make this work. I know you are the man for me.
A good friend told me once, when I asked her if she wrote her own vows, that not only did she NOT pen them herself, but she didn’t think she would have known what to write then, because she hadn’t been through enough with her partner to know what to say.
Standing here today, I feel confident that we have been through enough, that I know you well enough, that I know US well enough, to know what to say. I know the reasons why I love you. I know the ways I hope to show my love and commitment to you. I know who we are and who we want to be.
[Mi.Vida], you are the love of my life. You are my best friend. You are my trusted partner. You are the person I most want to see when I wake up in the morning and the person I hope to snuggle up with when I fall asleep. You are the most amazing father to our children. You are a compassionate human being and I am humbled–and honored–that you’ve chosen to walk through life with me.
But I don’t want this to be a bunch of clichés… trite sayings that anyone could use for their wedding vows. Even though all those things are true, they aren’t what make a marriage strong and satisfying. What make a marriage work are the little things. When I think of our future I think of all the wonderful ways we compliment each other, the ways we make a good team.
I’m loud and audacious while you’re more reserved and deliberate. I’m sometimes over zealous while you’re always thoughtful. I’m the one who gets things done and you’re the one who counsels careful consideration. I’m the one who wants to keep going and you’re the one who reminds me why we may need to slow down.
I love how we have similar interests, and we’re excited and inspired by each other’s passions even when we don’t share them. I love that we both are dedicated to our writing and are so good at articulating our thoughts and feelings. I love that we communicate so well. I love that we want to be the same kind of parents to our children and that we support each other in the insanity that is raising our amazing daughter and miraculous son. I love that you love me, despite all my faults and foibles.
Most importantly I love how we make each other laugh. I kept coming up to you at those tailgates all those years ago because you were hilarious… you made me guffaw. You made me chortle. You made me spray C- out of my nose. And you made me feel special, like I was the only girl shot-gunning a beer on that alcohol soaked parking space. And you thought I was funny too. You laughed at my jokes almost as much as I laughed at yours. We share the same strange but wonderful humor.
I still love when I make you laugh.
And that is my biggest promise to you, that I will keep laughing, and making you laugh. Of course I also promise to love you and protect you and share your hopes and support you in your dreams. I promise to listen to you when you speak and really hear what you are saying. I promise to acknowledge and appreciate all that you do for me and for our family. I promise to give you the space you need to thrive as a person, as a partner and as a father. I promise to dedicate time and energy to you and our relationship. I promise to never take you, or us, or our family for granted. I promise not to expect more of you than you can offer. I promise to discuss things even when it’s difficult to talk. I promise to always share the way I’m feeling and respect how you’re feelings too. I promise to be patient and kind and mindful. I promise to remind you that I love you every single day. I promise to be ready to work at our relationship, no matter what.
But mostly I promise to make you laugh. Laughter is what lead me to you and I promise it will be what keeps us together.
We’ve been through a lot [Mi.Vida]. We’ve survived a devastating loss. We’ve weathered the sometimes painful transformation into parents. We’ve braved the San Francisco housing market (no small feat). We’ve lived through the heartbreak and uncertainty of secondary infertility. We carved out this amazing life for ourselves. We’ve achieved so many of our goals. We’ve made so many of our dreams come true. And we did it all together. It wasn’t easy and I’m sure many more challenges lay ahead, but I am sure that we can survive them together. Actually, I believe that we can not just survive, but thrive, no matter what life sends our way.
I love you, [Mi.Vida], with all my heart, and I promise that, no matter what, together we will thrive.