As I sat down to write this I turned my iPod on "shuffle" to supply a little background music. Appropriately the first song that came on was "L-O-V-E" by Nat King Cole. And really, right now that's about the only thing that's been on my mind.
Sarah and I have been married for just over a week now and it's been amazing. Our wedding ceremony was pretty simple by most modern standards and I wouldn't have changed a thing. It was just Sarah and me on the beach in Florida with the preacher and a guy taking pictures.
It seems wedding ceremonies have become so complex and involved, it's become very easy to focus on all of the non-essentials: Renting the church, coordinating colors with bridesmaids' dresses, choosing music, deciding who to -- and not to -- invite, decorating, who will sing which song, whose niece will be the flower girl, will we take communion and light a unity candle, coordinating who walks down the aisle to which music cue, wondering if everyone will be able to fly in and get a hotel, buying and booking flowers, photos, videos, and commemorative mugs.
All that and more.
Needless to say, people in the wedding business are making a good chunk of change off of America In Love.
We go through such a rigmarole, instead of two people pledging love to one another the process transforms us into mini-producers trying to put together the perfect performance that will outdo anything we've seen, will be more memorable than the next couple's ceremony, and will also be pulled off without a hitch.
Sarah and I decided to approach it all from a different angle entirely. We wanted to skip all the flair and go straight to what was important to us: Pledging never-ending love to one another. Let's be honest. Ten years down the road no one but Sarah and I will care -- or remember -- what we did or didn't do for the ceremony and we agreed we'd much rather look back and remember the day not as a big blur that cost us thousands with nothing to show for it but a few fancy photos sitting in an album no one ever looks at (how about we save that money to put toward our future together instead?), but we'll remember October 26 2007 as the day we made a promise to each other (and God) that this was it.
When Brewster, my buddy who officiated the wedding, asked what kind of ceremony-on-the-beach we wanted it felt great to be up-front about it without having to impress anyone with our "wedding show". "Nothing fancy," we told him, "We want this day to be about what it's supposed to be about."
And it was good.
After the ceremony Sarah and I ran into the ocean, wedding clothes and all. Why did we decide to do such a thing? For no other reason except we wanted to. And why not? I can't think of a better way to start a great adventure. And admit it. It looked fun and you wish you jumped in the ocean, too.