When asked what engagement is like, the simple answer is “the grass is greener on the other side“. Maybe it’s a lack of preparation, or feeling like I’m suddenly propelled into unknown territory, but I find it scary, like a sheep in a shiny new meadow, I would like to return to my pasture please.
Why bother with engagements? It’s a little silly now but a few months ago, I questioned it a lot. Can’t we just go from boyfriend to husband? I do see relationships as a path to marriage, that should suffice. There just didn’t seem like a need for a ring, seriousness/formality, or a public display of affection by calling someone fiancé.
Post engagement, I went a little wedding crazy for 2 weeks. “Cheap wedding dresses” were my top search terms, along with sleeping at 2am after fruitless galavanting on the Internet for a dress that would make sense. It seemed quite obvious that something wasn’t right. During the week we resized the ring, it was a LOTR Gollum moment when the unhealthy obsession vanished as I took it off. No more obsessing about my preciousssss…
After adding it all up, being engaged actually did start to make sense, purposeful even! It is intense, intentional and incredibly directed preparation. (I tried hard for 3 I’s) I’ve come to realize it is preparation that goes beyond logistics, practicality of a dress or a colour theme. It is beyond just talks and figuring out if we complement and can survive with each other for the rest of our lives. It is more than that, it has to be more than that.
What is with all the drama of this new phase?
It starts to feel scary when traditions feel purposeless, worrying when my mission/goals are questioned, demoralizing when I feel mediocre. More than that, it’s been painful to deny selfishness, confusing to discern for 2 and completely crazy to stick to God’s will (which is un-understandable).
What did I get myself into? Is it all worth fighting for? Why did I say okay? I don’t think I read the terms and conditions before signing the dotted line.
Yet, it feels right.
One small night, I was feeling tired and was at that point where I would be easily annoyed by anything. Feeling mildly charitable, I played chauffeur after Shaun’s retreat. But he being tired, I had to dismiss anything I was looking forward to.
Heartfelt sharing? Nope.
Jokes to end the night happy? Nope.
Feeling present to each other? Nope.
It was the hardest yet oddly most joyful thing to do. Quite simply (and to an extent, possibly regrettably), it’s something I would wish I could do every day.
Having a blog is but a reminder of all these yes’, should I go into moments where I scream “NO!”. Similarly, I don’t want to forget tiny moments while figuring out God’s evolving mission.
Build up is important! And such a large part of me is worried about obsessing over the things that don’t quite matter. So for the next 9 months, all I want is to be engaged in an active dialogue, to just… be engaged.
Oh 2016, you’re gonna be tough.