I recently read this “I was more worried about a 12 hour day, than I was about a 50-year commitment.” And thought YES!!! Anyone else with me??
How true is that? The engagement period and the wedding planning can become overwhelming. For us, we spent over a year planning a day made up of 8 hours of “activities”. If you are in this stage of planning, I get it. You want the day to be perfect.
I mean it is a one time deal, right? You want the flowers to be coordinated perfectly with your dress that ultimately matches your bridesmaids dresses. You want the cake to be one of a kind and you can’t forget all the little touches that Pinterest tells us are the things dream wedding s are made of (I’m looking at you burlap and chalkboard art). Oh, I forgot to mention you probably are focusing on the vows and anticipating the moment of walking down the aisle with your new husband.
But I challenge you to carve out time during the engagement season to focus on life after the honeymoon. One of my favorite things we did while planning the wedding was attending pre-marital counseling. I compare it to training for a race. You can’t just show up on the day of a 5k with 0 experience running and expect to run a 5k in 25 minutes. Running a race requires training and requires you to learn new skills and practice for the event. In this case, the training came in the form of pre-marital counseling and reading books on marriage together. The race is what we are in now- the married years.
I am thankful that we invested 5 weeks in counseling before walking down the aisle. It led us to have conversations about our expectations, finances, sex, and best ways to communicate. Truth bomb time: It wasn’t easy. Most weeks we left and the car ride home was spent with us yelling at each other and tears flowing down our faces. It was hard work. But man am I glad we did that. Lessons we learned in those practice days have set us up for success today. No, we aren’t perfect and we still mess up, but it is nice to be able to pull out that training exercise lesson every so often of “Hey remember when we learned that you like to spend money and I like to save” that helps us understand when there are frustrations with the ways we are spending within our budget.
So I challenge you to hit pause on your wedding planning right now or for my single friends- hit pause on worrying about when Prince Charming is going to show up. Hit pause and prepare. Will you read a book about marriage, or perhaps seek out a mentor couple to help ask you tough questions that later on will make you say “I am glad we did that”. What will you do today to set your future relationship up for success? Tell me a book you are currently reading for your relationship because I just finished one and need some new material to learn from!