The Stones Roll into Year Four

On this day, three years ago, I woke up in a quaint bed and breakfast on my wedding day. Many girls dream of that fairy tale wedding, and I certainly lived it. The day started with breakfast with six of my closest girlfriends, then it was off to hair and makeup. Mimosas anyone?

We took MANY ‘getting ready’ photos before actually getting ready. Then it was time for a first look with my dad. (Definitely recommend!) Priceless. Next, I waited for my bridesmaids to finish getting ready (yes, I said it) so we could go take bridal party pictures. I didn’t do a first look with Cason, so it was just us girls and the family. Then we waited some more while the guys took pictures.

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Before I knew it, it was wedding time. I rode in a car down to the barn and waited with the bridesmaids and my dad for the processional to begin. I also remember that across the street a car had swerved into the ditch–thankfully they were okay, and it wasn’t anyone who was attending the wedding. When my dad and I walked to the end of the aisle, I remember feeling overwhelmed at how many people had come to see us get married.  Then about a third of the way down the aisle, my veil got stuck on the newly installed hardwood plank floor, tugging my head back. I stopped in the middle of the aisle, and my dad urgently whispered “Where are you going?” Honestly the funniest memory from that day, especially considering I’d always said growing up that I didn’t want to wear a veil on my wedding day. (I don’t regret it. It was beautiful, and worth the hang up.) After the wedding coordinator unhooked my veil from the floor, I walked down to Cason, and the rest is history! I only remember bits and pieces of what Cason’s dad said as he officiated the ceremony, but I remember how I felt–the prayers were beautiful and sincere, and the love was palpable. (Random side-note: the heaters were on and kept blowing my veil and hair.)

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We kissed. People cheered. And I can’t believe it’s been three years. And honestly, I know this sounds cheesy, but believe me when I say that I felt like Cason was the only person I saw clearly that day. While I certainly remember talking with everyone and dancing, it was like I was seeing Cason with 20/20 vision and everything else blurred in the periphery. What a lovely way to feel on your wedding day.

Another thing I remember is that my bouquet was the most gorgeous arrangement of flowers I’ve ever seen. I LOVED them. Still do. At some point between the post-ceremony pictures and the reception, my bouquet was placed in a vase as the centerpiece for our table, unbeknownst to me. I remember saying that they were beautiful too! And someone gently informed me that they were in fact my bridal bouquet. (I did not toss that bouquet. Sorry bridesmaids, but I think I stole one of yours. Haha)

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Well, if you’ve made it this far in my recap of one of the most beautiful days ever, you may as well keep reading about the things that have happened since then. Cason and I have lived in 3 cities in 3 years, got a puppy, got a rabbit, and that’s about it.  Kidding! But sitting here and sharing wisdom from three years of marriage sounds a little silly. I mean three years is more than one (duh), but it’s not 5 or 10 or 30. So how about I say this…with everything that we’ve experienced and learned in three years, I cannot even begin to imagine what the Lord has in store for us for the rest of our marriage. We’re just getting started, and I’m thankful for this stage of our marriage.

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Thank you to everyone who believed and had faith in God’s plan for our relationship and marriage from the beginning. Thank you to those who have come along side us and stood by us to support us emotionally and otherwise. Thank you to my friends who insisted I leave Target and go home to my husband when I was upset. Thank you to the couples who intentionally give grace and mercy in their marriages and remind me to do the same. Thanks be to God, who has a bigger plan than I can even begin to fathom. And of course thanks to my husband who is still here after 3 years that included some of the toughest battles of my life. The Lord knew exactly what he was doing when he denied my heart’s desire to go to China and gave me you on a spring day in 2013. Here’s to year number four and all the growth, joy, and grace it may bring. I love you today, still.

 

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the opposite of love

Today I requested Dave Matthews tickets from my dad for ‘graduation,’ in December.  The concert is actually during finals week, which I think will be the best option for escaping the madness of studying and testing, at least for an evening.  When I found out The Lumineers are opening for DMB, I instantly opened Spotify and put their album on repeat.  Love them.

The more I listened to the CD–at work with nothing else to do but that and a psychology report–the more I began to recognize the particular songs that felt most familiar.  You know, the songs that you hear and you wonder how in the world someone could know you well enough to write a song about you, especially considering they’ve never even met you.  That is how I define good music.

She’ll tear a hole in you, the one you can’t repair
But I still love her, I don’t really care

Stubborn Love is one of those songs, for me.  Listen to it.  Read the lyrics.  (Trust me, you’ll want to do that or else everything I am about to say won’t make a whole lot of sense.)
The guy is singing about a girl who seems to get love all wrong, but he loves her anyway.  I know that girl, and I’m pretty familiar with that guy.  What I know about that girl is this: something happened to her to make her the way she is.  I believe that the most basic desire of any human being is to love and to be love, and I just don’t think that anyone pushes that away or runs from it without having been burned by a false, incomplete version of ‘love.’  This guy gets that, and he recognizes that to leave her is to confirm her newfound belief that love just doesn’t exist.  He chooses to love her through her pain, and I respect that because I feel like those guys are so hard to find…especially when you think about the fact that there are also guys out there who have been just as burned by ‘love.’  The idea of “stubborn love” is really just committment in a nutshell.  Love is about comitting to a person regardless of their past or the long road ahead.  After all, we all have scars from all the times we have fallen on this path we have been walking.

Also, stubborn love makes me think about how stubborn I am, and there are people who choose to love me anyway.  That’s a blessing I take for granted all too often, and being stubborn makes it even harder to accept the love that people try to give.  Anyway, I like this song.  I like how it sounds.  I like the lyrics.  I like that there are deep underlying meanings and themes.  I like the psychology of it.  I just wanted to share that with you.

It’s better to feel pain than nothing at all
The opposite of love is indifference.

In closing, here’s some other questions I’ve been pondering:
Am I in a ‘stubborn love’ kind of relationship with anyone?
Am I the stubborn one or the loving one?
And what is it that I am indifferent about that I really should be loving more?