The 60-seconds following, “I do…”

Shortly after college, I went through a period where my calendar had more weddings than I could count. I attended many, while others received a disappointing regret.

Of course, the weddings I attended were wonderful, and the ones with open bars were ever better. A group of my friends and I even established wedding rituals. Sitting with the same 4-5 singles at each wedding (several of whom are now with partner, and/or child), we would take bets on how long the ceremony would last – in Oklahoma, a wedding could last anywhere from twelve minutes to sixty minutes, and counting.

I watched some of my best friends get married those years after college, and now as I exist within another wave of marriages, I am finding weddings to be significantly less stressful for me (I know, I know, “It’s not about you,” and all of that). Weddings can be expensive for out-of-town guests. I can always appreciate the folks who understood/stand that an, unfortunately-I-can’t-attend, remark is mostly as a result of limited coins, and not because I don’t want to celebrate their love. And more than expensive, weddings can be disappointing for 20 to 30- year old out-of-town guests. Because celebrating love is fun, and it’s beautiful, and can be incredibly inspiring. In this context, there is nothing tougher than realizing you don’t have the funds to celebrate the love of some of your most important people. I digress.

I received a second wind last summer while attending the wedding of a very dear friend of mine in Michigan. I was pretty unhappy at this juncture of my life, and even while driving to the wedding, I remember anticipating how horrible it was going to be to only know one person outside of the bride and groom at this particular event. I even almost turned around and headed home while driving from southern Indiana to western Michigan. I was super-single, and sulked in a pity party for 80% of the drive.

And then something magical happened.

Photo - Suzy and Michael

Suzy Smith and Michael Chandler, 2014

Aside from the wedding being absolutely beautiful and wonderful (I wrote about it here), I experienced an out-of-body feeling while watching the bride and groom walk down the isle after committing, “I do.” It was enchanting. There was an instant change in the way they walked, smiled, and even held on to one another.

And I sat with those emotions for quite some time.

As a result, I now strategically place myself toward the back of any wedding congregation. I have decided there is nothing more satisfying than watching a couple experience the, “I do high,” just moments after they’ve committed to one another. Those 60-seconds following, “I do,” are some of the more joyous moments I have ever witnessed outside of the last five minutes of any episode of Extreme Makeover: Weight Loss Edition. It’s so real. And incredibly powerful.

If you’re on any form of social media, you’ll know that I attended a wedding this past weekend in upstate New York. And it surely did not disappoint. And thus, I continue to believe in love. And to want love. And to spread love.

Sharing the same sentiments as I experienced last summer, I commit to, “happily ever after;” No gasps at wedding invitations and announcements of big life moments, no sighs of frustration in the celebration of other’s big life moments, and finally, no skepticism around love. Love love. And love it fully.

Here’s to newlyweds,

Michael

Photo - Laura and Chad

Laura Persico and Chad Munkres, 2015

3 thoughts on “The 60-seconds following, “I do…”

  1. I’m so glad! I can say that my heart felt so…FULL in those 60 seconds. Full of love for my new husband, of elation at the promises made and received, of gladness now that I hadn’t trip over my dress or tied my tongue while reading the vows I wrote, and of pure joy to have shared the entire experience with our guests. Getting married at 38.5 years old was pretty remarkable and unforgettable! Here’s so us all! Slainte! <– Irish equivalent of "cheers!"

    Like

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