My wife and I decided sometime after getting engaged that we would write our own vows. I’ll admit, I felt overly confident about this. I thought, ‘I can knock this out of the park – it’ll be great.’ In reality? Eh.
Our officiant was a friend of my wife’s family, a good friend and neighbor of her grandparents. We met with him and told him about our plan to write our own vows. He was enthusiastic about this (and everything, really – he was a ton of fun to have as an officiant and gave very beautiful remarks at the wedding). He suggested that we email him our vows once we wrote them, and he could provide feedback if we wanted.
The idea was to have short vows – four or five bullet type items rather than a long speech, or a paragraph for each point. Yes, your wedding day is all about you … but P.S., there are a ton of people there waiting to drink, eat, and dance so uh … keep it snappy.
I sat down, thought about it, and poof, wrote down some vows. I sent them off to our officiant and went merrily along … until his reply. It went something along the lines of, “hmmm, these are good … but keep thinking.” That’s a kind way of saying: nope.
I asked my wife if she had emailed him, she said yes. Then I asked what kind of response she got, and she said that he liked them. Huh.
My vows must really stink. I asked my wife what she was thinking for the vows and she said, “oh something simple, and nice. Just not something cliché and cheesy like <and THEN! And then she said pretty much exactly what my initial batch of vows were. Brutal.>”
Clearly it was time to go back to the drawing board. I wrote a new set of vows that were ok. They were no longer cliché, but they weren’t good. It was my backup plan. I didn’t bother sending them to the officiant because I knew they were just ok. I thought the best plan would be to let all of this ruminate.
I don’t like to be rushed when it comes to creative genius (though I do like to oversell my abilities by saying phrases like ‘creative genius’). I was looking for real inspiration, like Calvin would.
It’s a Wednesday, the wedding is on Saturday, and I’m out for a jog. I’m listening to Wild Child, and one of the lyrics rumbles and tumbles through my brain like a wand just cast a spell on me. Suddenly the vows spill out of my brain and the only struggle was jogging home repeating them, over and over, over and over, so I wouldn’t forget them. Having already packed most everything in my apartment and moved it to my wife’s apartment, the only paper I had at home was a bit of junk mail to write the vows on.
After the wedding our officiant commented on my choice of paper that I pulled out of the inner pocket of my jacket, it was a neon green colored slip, but my wife liked the vows, so I guess it worked out ok.
(We just had our third wedding anniversary. Congrats to us!)
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