It’s upon us folks. We are neck deep into it. In fact, the end is near…
Ah, Wedding Season. The party. The fun. The DANCING!
You know it as well as I do. The invitations begin to make their way into your mailbox and bachelor/bachelorette party and wedding pictures start filling up your News Feed. Some years more than others, but either way, you know what I’m saying.
I will just state for the record: I love weddings. Probably more than the average dude. But then again, I’m an above average dude, but I digress. I love weddings because they symbolize something that I believe often goes overlooked. Weddings represent commitment, covenant, love (and finding the one you’ll love forever), and even a sense of finality.
I’ve heard someone say at a wedding, and maybe you have too, “Well, that’s all she wrote! That’s the end of the party for them!”
I couldn’t disagree more. If you’re not married, well, you just probably don’t understand. Let me explain…I’ve been married for 10 years this coming November and I can tell you the party never stopped–it just changed. Weddings to me represent a beginning of a new life. One that doesn’t have to change who you are; rather, a wedding marks the beginning of a journey that will forever change you and you’ll never be the same. Nothing will challenge you more. Nothing will motivate you more.
I’ve often heard it said that “Marriage ruins things” as well. My heart goes out to those that feel this way. Have you ever heard it said “Everything was fine before we got married, then things went south!”?
Marriage itself, yes, is a commitment. But it’s only as successful as you choose to make it.
I read recently somewhere that some people don’t believe in “true love” or a compelling “draw” to one person. That kind of thinking leads to lust-filled affairs and other poor decisions by allowing your emotions to get the best of you. It turns into a lifestyle that becomes a fear and the inability to commit. After all, why would you want to even try if every marriage around you has a 52% chance of failing and everything you’ve ever known from your parents and those around you is divorce? What’s the point? (For the record, I come from a divorced home.)
Instead, why not believe in Love as both a physical and emotional commitment. As an everyday commitment and often times a choice you will make. You have to choose to love someone every day.
Every day I wake up and smell my wife’s lingering morning breath and see sleep still in her eyes, yet I choose to love her. In that moment, it is not an overwhelming lustful, compelling urge that draws me to her. It is the loving choice of commitment I see that makes me fall again in love with her every morning. I want the same for my children and I’ll do my best to set those realistic expectations in their love lives.
All around us in this world we are constantly bombarded to give into our urges and feelings. Surrounded by songs and TV shows that idolize and glorify one night stands, that living a non-committal lifestyle, and a general society that seems to repel commitment, I choose to live a different example for my children.
One that overshadows the thought of living a life that is full of narcissism, uncontrolled urges, and a lack of self-control (MTV anyone?). Don’t get me wrong, there is a season for everything, including weddings, but if they can understand that a wedding isn’t the end of their free, single and carefree life, well then, I will count that as a victory.
I don’t want my kids to grow up thinking marriage is a sham and it’s only for suckers, or even the “it’s just something you do” mentality. If they choose to be single their entire lives, that’s okay too. Marriage isn’t for everyone and there’s nothing wrong with that. But there’s this culture that has been created that looks down on those who have chosen to at least attempt a life of commitment to something bigger than themselves. You can be single, just don’t be the single person who trashes marriage like it’s the end of the party or somehow those of us who are married screwed the pooch.
Weddings are just the beginning. I wouldn’t trade my beginning for anything…not to mention they make for one hell of a reason to have a big party. And I LOVE parties–especially if there’s dancing.