Over the weekend, the love of my life got down on one knee and asked me to marry him. Honestly, I don’t even remember exactly what he said. When I realized what was happening, I started weeping uncontrollably, and the next thing I knew I had a ring on my finger, my arms wrapped around his neck and a feeling of unfettered happiness coursing through my body. That was my initial reaction: joy, love, excitement. For our relationship, for our life together, for the wedding we are about to plan. But in the days since, I’ve felt so much more.
Both Jeff and I turn 27 in August. When he proposed, we had been together for five years and four months to the day. I’ve known that he was the one for years, and I’d been dreaming of getting engaged for a couple as well. I felt completely ready, in terms of age, maturity, the length of our relationship, all of those things. But once I had the ring on my finger, I suddenly felt very young again. Not because I didn’t feel ready, or in the right place intellectually and emotionally, because I am. It was more a sense of giddiness, of innocence, and of wonder. When we’re growing up, we are constantly having new experiences, discovering new emotions, learning new things. But then when we “become adults” this discovery slows, or ceases altogether. Sure, we may move to a new city or take on a new responsibility, but these things don’t tend to instill the same sense of wonder in us as those shaping experiences we had as children. But when Jeff proposed, that’s how it felt. Apart from the wedding planning that we’ll undertake over the next year, our day-to-day life won’t change that much. But the fabric of it, the foundation on which it is built, will shift dramatically. I’m no longer a girlfriend, I’m a fiancée. And soon I’ll be a wife. It’s a new experience, a new state of being, that I’m eager and overjoyed to discover.
Now, I mentioned the wedding planning. That is what this category of the blog will focus on for the next year or so leading up to our day. The wheels in my brain have already started turning, and while I’m incredibly excited to dive in, I still find myself being cautious. I love the intricacies of planning, but even to someone like me, planning a wedding feels like a massive undertaking, one that holds the potential to be stressful and overwhelming. But in the days I’ve been engaged, I’ve decided that I’m determined not to let it be so. Because truthfully, I don’t have a picture in my head of what my perfect wedding will look like. I don’t know how I want my centerpieces to look, or what songs I want on my must-play list. All I do know is that I want to be surrounded by the people I love when I tell the man I love that I intend to spend the rest of my life with him. But I am human, and I do want the day to be perfect and beautiful. So I’m going to try my best to approach the planning process, at least these early stages, from a place of love, excitement and discovery, and not from a place of stress or anxiety. Now, I’m not a fool. I fully expect stress to creep in, especially as we near the day and my to-do list grows. And those of you who have planned a wedding may think I’m naive, and you may be right. But on Saturday, when we gathered Jeff’s family and my family together, my mom said that she’s excited for our wedding because she knows that it will be an expression and celebration of our relationship. I love that sentiment, and I think the best way to honor it is to plan it the same way we’ve built our relationship, with a spirit of love and adventure.
But of course, you know a love a good planner. And my sister knows I love a good planner, so she got me this incredible one (from Marshalls, no less!), which I already know is going to prove unendingly helpful. It contains a blank 12-month calendar, so that when we set a date I can put it in at the end of the calendar and then work backwards. It also contains monthly checklists beginning with 12 months before the day, worksheets to hold information on vendors, dresses, invitations, etc., and folders to hold brochures and inspiration I tear out of magazines. I’ve already started writing some notes in the pull-out notebook too!
The last thing I must touch on here is the ring. Not to be cheesy, but it is perfect in every way. It’s from Brilliant Earth, a company committed to ethically sourced jewelry, which I love. I feel proud to wear it for that reason, and also because it’s beautiful. I am still getting used to wearing it to sleep, to shower, to exercise, and at Zumba yesterday I was terrified it would go flying across the room. But it didn’t, because it’s perfect and it fits perfectly and it came from the perfect man (sorry I’m not sorry for gushing).
I’ll be posting here throughout the planning process on how it’s going, what I’m feeling, things I discover, and everything like that. But first, I think I’ll take the next few days to bask in my engagement glow.