My wedding is a week from today!
I haven't blogged about the planning nearly as much as I expected I would, partly because it's mostly not that dramatic, partly because I've been trying to write a play that mines a lot of this territory, and partly because most of what I've learned is that, even more than I realized beforehand, my decision-making process basically involves asking what option costs the least amount of money and then trying to make up reasons why that's the best choice for every reason other than price. ("Everyone knows a two-piece band sounds nicer than a nine-piece band." / "Who really wants a cake made out of edible ingredients?" / "Wouldn't it be unique and special to have centerpieces made of rocks and twigs instead of flowers?") I'm exaggerating, but not that much. Clearly this makes me impossibly frustrating to make decisions with, and despite recognizing this, I don't know that my self-awareness makes me any easier.
I mean, I absolutely care about the pieces that count -- I want the wedding to be nice, I want the pictures to be nice, I want people to have a good time, I want to feel happy and excited and good about the day -- but there are so many trivial pieces that ultimately no one would ever notice or care about, but if you're not careful you can end up spending an unlimited amount of money on pretty much anything. Invitations, programs, flowers, cake, anything -- it can all cost anywhere from not that much to infinity. And it somehow feels bad to me -- in a way that I guess it doesn't feel bad to that many people -- that the real point of what's going on can easily get buried underneath all the fondant. The wedding is about getting together everyone we care about and celebrating that we found each other and want to spend the rest of our lives together and share the future. A friend of mine, a bunch of years ago before I met Nina or anything like that, when he was talking about his own relationship, said that he felt commitment was like putting a stake in the ground and saying this is the person I want to be in the foxhole with, when stuff happens, no matter what it is, no matter how we have to deal with it, this is who I want to be with and who I want on my side, together, figuring it all out. That stuck with me, I liked that image. So, like, that should be what the wedding's about, to me. About having found that, and getting everyone we care about (and some relatives we're under legal obligation to include) together to celebrate it.
And yet too much of it ends up being about the color of the table linens.
I think what's strange to me is that if there's some long continuum of what a wedding could look like, from 15 people in a backyard having a potluck lunch off paper plates to 200 people in a hotel ballroom wearing fancy clothes and eating on actual dishes (and of course I'm sure it can get a lot fancier than that, but I just haven't been to those kinds of weddings), every wedding I've been to or heard about has been at just about the same part of the continuum, and there hasn't been much variation. I'm surprised more people don't have backyard barbeque weddings. But then I think maybe I'm just missing something, and there's a reason everyone wants their wedding to be fancy and cost real money, instead of being simple and easy. And then, sort of like with law firms, I realize maybe there isn't a reason, and it's just what people do, and I'm just weird for not caring whether we have flowers in the middle of the table, or marshmallows.
In any case, all of this is overshadowed by the fact that I'm super-excited that it's just a week away, and then I get to be married. Which is neat.