I am beginning to lose count of the people that have asked Forest and I why we are waiting until our wedding to live together. We have our own house for goodness sake!
My first response was “we’re traditional.” Then I realized that we’re actually not. I will have men of honour standing at my side by the altar. I won’t be throwing a bouquet, I won’t even have a bouquet. Forest and I went house hunting and bought a place before we were officially engaged, much to my sister’s concern and my delight.
Another response is “we’re Christian,” which is true but maybe not helpful because the word Christian brings up different contexts, either negative or positive in our listener’s minds. Billy Graham, Bart Simpson’s neighbour, the angry people that hold up signs etc…. What is a Christian is a whole other discussion.
I think the most honest response for me is “we’re not ready.” We’re growing something.. a Forest tree and a Melody Rose and one day we will become a Forest Melody Rose. One mysterious plant. Right now we’re still at the sapling, bud stage. Learning how to do life together. We are learning how to make decisions and have disagreements and then have the space to process and pray and come together again.
We are learning about each other, wow, our personalities are different! I still feel so surprised when Forest responds in a completely different way to the same situation. It’s like he’s an alien or something. Maybe I’m the alien 😉.
I am so grateful for quiet waking up moments alone where I can remember the day before and remind myself why I love Forest.
For me, marriage is not a contract where as long as both parties are happy and benefitting it will last. Marriage is a covenant broken only by death. I am not ready to live with Forest that way yet. Every day that counts down to 08/26 brings another Evergreen needle, more blossoming of the Rose bud.
A couple of nights ago I made waffles with our new waffle iron (thanks Aunty Pat!) It was late by the time we ate. I was thrilled and comforted by the familiarity of having a late night dinner of waffles, a frequent tradition with my parents. While I said with a big smile, “I feel so at home!” Forest replied, “this is unfamiliar territory”. Eating breakfast food at 8:30 at night? Weird. “That’s okay.” I said, “I will be your guide.”
Living together will be unfamiliar territory for both of us. We will be confused, embarrassed, delighted. We are growing toward that. On August 26 we will be sent out by our loved ones into the strange, wonderful land of marriage. I’m so excited 😀😀