You Learn Something New, Every Day

After a dozen years, averaging  30 ceremonies a year, what’s that, then? 350 or more weddings? You’d think by now I’d have been there, done that, worn out the T-shirt.

But already this season, I’ve had some totally new wedding-related experiences: F’rinstance, I got a groom’s name wrong, for the first time, ever. [Only for a second, and not in any of the legally binding bits!]  And, I officiated over a double wedding ceremony [that’s where I got a one of the groom’s names mixed up with the other. Blush]. I saw a bride and her father drive their car, right up the aisle to the altar [and used the bonnet of the car as our signing table]. Let’s see, what else? Oh, I was unforgivably late to a rehearsal, the latest I’ve ever been, [there’s an interesting, though not very believable excuse filled with ninjas and fire-breathing dragons, but no better reason than that I failed to allow enough time to get there]. And I was embarrassingly early to the ceremony, the next day!

And, the thing that I totally wasn’t expecting: even after all those hundreds of beautifully crafted, carefully honed vows and I do’s and promises, just the other day, I was blindsided by a couple’s [secret squirrel surprise] vows totally taking my breath away.

I asked politely after the ceremony, and they said I could share them here.

So, here are the wedding vows I wish I had written:

The groom said:
You are my best beloved, and my best friend.
Somehow, in spite of some spectacular lapses in judgment,
and thanks to some astonishingly good luck,
I find myself standing here, beside you, on our wedding day.
Pinch me, I can’t believe it’s real.

I promise to care for you, to celebrate with you,
and to work beside you to build a life together
better than we could have imagined having by ourselves.
And so, I give you this ring, to remind you every day of my promise
that in all conditions, under every circumstance,
I am always on your team, as long as I live.
Finding you is the best thing that I have ever done,
until this very moment,
when becoming your husband will take that honour.

And when she could speak, the bride said back:

You are MY best beloved and MY best friend, too.  Jinx!
With this ring, I give you my promise
to be by your side and ON your side from here on out.
I promise to honour you, and to BE honourable,
to listen as you trust me with your thoughts, your fears, and your dreams;
To see you as the extraordinary person that you are,
even when you don’t believe it.
And to love you deeply and honestly.
You heart moves mine,
your mind challenges and inspires me,
your humour delights me,
and your hands are the ones I wish to hold mine,
until the end of my days.

I gladly make these promises to you,
and I am proud to become your wife.

Sweet, no? Maybe it’s just that so often, by the time I hear the couple actually saying the words to each other, we’ve been over and over them, tweaking and fine tuning – this was the first time in a while that I got to hear a set fresh out of  the box.

I’m kind of surprised that there’s been so much to blog about this season’s weddings, when it’s still only the middle of November. Even after all this time, there’s still so much more to learn, discover, and experience – I love it!



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