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Musings on Marrage


by Meg Keene, Editor-In-Chief

As our wedding day approaches, I’m finding myself wanting to write about marriage more and more.* To muse on why we do this – why we put ourselves through shoe buying and guest lists and what kind of a dress we want. Because while all this stuff can be both fun and maddening, it’s not the point. This wedding planning is just a snippet of our lives, it’s a moment of transition between one phase and then next. We’re struggling to find our way out of our cocoon, exhilarated and terrified to unfold our new wings.

This snippet on marriage is from a Real Simple article (Febuary 2008) called Love Letters – two letters written by writers Cathi Hanauer and Daniel Jones, after fifteen years of marriage. It is such a honest portrait of what I hope married life will bring us, that I clipped this article and re-read it from time to time. So now, I’m sharing Cathi Hanauer’s words with you:

As Rickie Lee Jones put it in our wedding song, “If you fall, I’ll pick you up/ pick you up” – and so far you do. To me, that’s what married love is. I love you for continuing to love me despite my contradictions, for finding me endearing when others might find me impossible. And I love you for sharing my life vision, even if I am a little more restless while you’re happy to stay home and build a stone wall in the front garden, like you did last weekend. A pretty little wall to go with the patio you laid out back two summers ago. So there it is. The nice house, the nice life we’ve build together – these days full of kids and pets and books and sports and artwork and music, with just a little bitching now and then.
Here’s to the rest of it.
Love, Me

*Don’t worry, we’re still going to talk about weddings too, silly buttons.
(apologies for not linking to the whole article, which you all would love. It does not appear to be online.)

Meg Keene

Meg is the Founder and EIC of APW. Her first book, A Practical Wedding: Creative Solutions for Planning a Beautiful, Affordable, and Meaningful Celebration, was published in January 2012, and has been a top three bestseller on the wedding bookshelf ever since. Meg has her BFA in Drama from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts. She lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with her husband and son.

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  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/15899239356088557995 Amanda

    It's silly BUDDONS, Meg.

    xo

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/05750659066802561501 Erika

    Sharing a life vision. Yes.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/18209861350905135093 LPC

    Your impulse makes an enormous amount of sense. Quite practical, even to begin to think about marriage as the wedding gets closer:).

  • vanessa

    I subscribed to Real Simple last year. Now I want to go home and sift through my old mags to see if I still have that one. *sigh*

    Thats something for the fridge.

  • http://accordionsandlace.wordpress.com/ accordionsandlace

    Yes yes yes. The mister and I were kind of snuggly this morning still feeling lovey dovey after our session with our rabbi. I told him, "You know me better than anyone else in the world." He smiled. I keep thinking lately about how we, two sometimes different, sometimes identical, people are binding ourselves together like this–what that means–and it's so powerful.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/00174894872050076618 Marie-Ève

    Yes! Exactly. I remember loving this article (yes, I subscribe to Real Simple, I'm not only a newlywed but much more importantly a mommy, a career woman, and a homeowner/maker). Wedding planning is a great (and sometimes not so great) project, but it does not a marriage or a life makes. What counts is choosing this person again and again as the years go by, throughout what gets thrown at you.

  • Anonymous

    Silly Buttons?

    That's a new one and I like it.

  • http://treeplusrock.blogspot.com Callie

    my beloved and I have been reading a lot about "what this all means" and we are so thrilled to keep learning about the intimacy, the nature of love, and all the awesome spiritual stuff that goes along with it…
    this ain't no walk in the park!

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/05532197787877824868 Becca

    I just teared up, like I seem to do every time I think about marriage and not the wedding. This is so perfectly us and so perfectly what I want in fifteen years. This line, especially, hit me:

    "And I love you for sharing my life vision, even if I am a little more restless while you're happy to stay home and build a stone wall in the front garden, like you did last weekend."

    Oh thank you for my midday teary smile.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/16826856044690823004 iheartkiwi

    a breath of fresh air. thank you. it's really not about the wedding… it's about what comes after. i can't wait for november!

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100003406003849 Velin

      - Thank you so much for sharing Arden! As it turns out, my hsbuand and I are in the position where we may have to adopt as well. Even though it will be worth it, I get so scared thinking of all the waiting, pain, trials, and tears we may have to go through if we do have to adopt in order to have children in our lives. I always appreciate it when people are willing to share their stories so we who are going through the same thing can have someone’ or something to lean on. Tell you family congratulations!And, as always beautiful pictures to be honest, since we’re moving to Texas (this week!) and adoption is in the picture, I’ve always wanted the process photographed, and I’ve even thought of emailing you and just asking you to be our photographer for when that day comes So, watch out for an email from me in *hopefully* the next five years (max). You’re wonderful, as always!June 21, 2011 3:23 pm

  • Cate Subrosa

    I love being married.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/15286031970770408787 Mandy

    Oh yes – let's do some musing on marriage.

    I went to my library and got the back issue to read the article. Lovely, just lovely.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/13952246646459086714 Lili

    This is like a relieved sigh. We need more of this, when the focus is often on cake. Which is more important: cake? or a love that lasts?

  • Ashley

    I know I am very late on this but I have been slowly reading APW from the beginning and I finally cam across this post. I just wanted to speak to the why do we prepare for weddings portion of this post. I think we do this becaus it IS a transition. For many of us it would feel just a little surreal to wake up single and go to bed married. I think wedding planning is prepping us for the lifetime to come of knowing that it’s not just us we are bound to. We do it as a preview to seeing what building a life together will be. Clearly this isn’t true for everybody as some of us elope, and I suppose elopers have already done all that in a different way. However, I do believe that is what it’s about for the rest of us because the rest of your life is a lot to sallow even if you do want it reall badly and are ready.