Why We're Having a 2 Year Engagement
"Oh my gosh....are you serious right now....are you sure.....yes, YES OF COURSE!"
That was my reaction a year ago when Jake proposed to me on April Fools Day, but it wasn't a joke, he was serious. (Side note: We have always done surprises for each other on April Fools Day instead of pranks. So I surprised him one year and then he proposed the next!). A year later and another year away from our wedding, I am even more in love with him and I'm so excited to be his wife.
It's tough to have a long engagement. There are so many times I've asked him to just meet me at the city courthouse so we can just get married already. There's just so much comfort, peace, excitement and joy in the thought of being married to my best friend. At the same time, I'm so glad we are waiting for 2 years before getting married. Here's a few reasons why:
1. We can emotionally prepare for marriage
Jake and I have been together almost four years. We know each other so well and finish each other's sentences. Sometimes we feel married in a sense because of that. But we've learned that there is a world of a difference between dating and marriage just from the little taste we've gotten since living together. There's learning how to live together, how to split and share finances, how to juggle responsibilities to your partner and yourself and how to remain a "me" and how to become a "we." This time of engagement also allows us to have all the important conversations: debt, family, housing, savings, etc. even if we've had some of those already. I try to remind myself that this is the time to learn to be a wife, a time to practice putting someone else's needs above my own and a time to prepare myself for marriage emotionally. I 100% feel ready to marry Jake and know that I am 1000% certain with that choice, but there is a bit of heart and head work you need to do personally and together before you tie the knot.
2. We can physically prepare for marriage
Planning a wedding is hard. I always looked forward to it and thought it would be the most fun thing ever. In reality, I spend a lot of time stressing over budget, guest lists, invitation fonts, bridesmaid dress lengths and seating charts. I have found some joy in planning but I have not found the ultra-glamourous zen of planning that shows like Say Yes to the Dress and all the movies seems to perpetrate. It's for that reason I'm so happy I have two years to plan this thing. I feel like I would have just cracked under the pressure if I tried to plan it in under a year. With 2 years, I'm able to space out the planning and choose one or two things to focus on per month, which makes it a lot more manageable.
3. We can financially prepare for marriage
Let's be real - I'm a post-grad, entry-level publicist and Jake is finishing law school. Weddings are expensive and we're trying to pay for most of it ourselves. Even though we are being cash-conscious, it's difficult to plan a dream wedding that is under a certain budget. I'm so glad we have extra time to save for the wedding and I'm thankful to our parents who are helping out either by housing us right now or helping pay for the wedding. (Y'all are the real MVPs).
4. We can spiritually prepare for marriage
As Christians, Jake and I believe in the holy sacrament of marriage. Jake is Catholic and I'm Episcopalian. While we both follow Christ, there are certain things we need to do within the church to prepare for marriage. These 2 years of engagement allows us time to study the scripture, meet with our ministers, undergo pre-marital counseling and file paperwork. On my own personal side, this time allows me to connect with God and pray as I prepare for being a wife.
All that said, May 4, 2019 can't come soon enough! I'm so excited for our wedding but I'm also grateful for this season of waiting.
P.S. Shout out to Candace Lynn for the best engagement photos.