18 June 2011

Wedding week, day six: love and marriage

So, tomorrow is the official anniversary – one year since Mr. P and I did this:

But there’s one last part of our wedding that, hopefully, is obvious that I haven’t mentioned yet: MARRIAGE.

Father D has one requirement if you ask him to officiate at your nuptial mass: YOU MUST MEMORIZE YOUR VOWS. In his words? "They're the most important part." Can't argue with that! But for some reason everyone – our musicians, our wedding coordinator, random members of the congregation – warned Mr. P and me about this. “Ohhhh, you know he makes you memorize your vows, right?” Why they made it such a big deal, I do not know. First of all, our vows were three sentences long. Not hard to memorize, and especially easy to recite if we really meant them (which we did). And secondly, I know exactly what I promised Mr. P. I meant it then and I mean it now and so I can remember any time I want.

Here, I'll tell you right now, without cheating and looking them up: I took Mr. P as my husband. I promised to be true to him in good times and in bad, in sickness and in health. And I said I would love him and honor him all the days of my life.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, he vowed the same to me. Also easy to remember.

My favorite part is the last line. Just in case the first two lines didn’t cover it, it’s all in that third line. Loving and honoring Mr. P means listening without offering advice when he’s had a hard day and needs to vent. It means doing my part to clean up around the house, which is sometimes more and sometimes less than his part. It means taking a deep breath and trying not to speak harshly to him when I am having a bad day. It means letting him choose which movie to watch, and sometimes picking so he doesn’t have to choose instead. It means trying not to hit the snooze button a fourth time because that really, really drives him crazy. It means that every day I will consciously try to be the amazing wife that he deserves, because he is also trying to be the best husband for me. And it means that we are always going to be in this together. Not because we don't have a choice, but because we do.

Mr. P and I worked carefully on our nuptial mass, choosing readings and prayers we both thought best represented what we wanted in our marriage. I won't wax poetic about each detail, because they are most important to us and probably not so much to you. So I'll just tell you a little about the music.

We each picked a hymn with words that meant a lot to us. The hymn I picked was “You Are Mine” which is one I’ve loved for many years, but it just seemed perfect for our wedding. For the religiously inclined among my handful of readers, I chose it because it’s a beautiful song about Christ and his people, but if you are familiar with Paul’s letter to the Ephesians, you might remember that marriage is supposed to mirror that same relationship. So it’s also a song about Mr. P and me.

I will come to you in the silence
I will lift you from all your fear
You will hear my voice, I claim you as my choice
Be still, and know I am near.

I am hope for all who are hopeless
I am eyes for all who long to see
In the shadows of the night, I will be your light
Come and rest in me

Do not be afraid, I am with you
I have called you each by name
Come and follow me, I will bring you home
I love you, and you are mine.

Mr. P, on the other hand, picked a song after we sang it in regular mass one weekend: “The Servant Song”. I think in the hymnal it's categorized under "Missions" or something like that, but I happen to think Mr. P was absolutely correct in thinking it is a perfect song for our wedding.

Will you let me be your servant?
Let me be as Christ to you
Pray that I may have the grace
To let you be my servant, too.

We are pilgrims on a journey
We are trav’lers on the road
We are here to help each other
Walk the mile and bear the laod.

I will weep when you are weeping
When you laugh I’ll laugh with you
I will share your joy and sorrow
‘Til we’ve seen this journey through.

So there you have it, our marriage celebration in six posts and a hundred photos and thousands of words. A lot of DIY, a lot of friends and family, and a lot of fun for the new life Mr. P and I created.

The beginning.

Happy anniversary, Mr. P.