My wedding was Saturday, April 1. Shortly after the ceremony, I mentioned to my new wife that I’d like to type up our vows and paste them on my website. Why? I’m not sure, exactly…but reciting our vows was the highlight of the wedding for me. It was also the only thing I was particularly nervous about.
We decided to write our own vows almost immediately after deciding to get married. We knew we’d have a service of our own making, and we’d express our love for each other in our own words. We barely discussed what we were preparing in terms of our vows – we each wrote our own.
And they were lovely!
I never thought I’d find myself in this position.
I never thought I’d find a person to truly share my life with.
A person I cared about enough.
A person who cared about me enough.
Who was interested, compassionate, concerned.
I never thought I’d find love.
And then I met you, that random Monday night, and I knew you were something special.
And then we met again, about 2 weeks later, and I remembered to get your number that time, and leaving out some of the more embarrassing details (for me), we really started talking and spending time together.
And it didn’t take long before I was done. I loved you so immediately, so intensely…you were entirely unexpected, unwanted even in some ways, yet there you were. And you were perfect. You were amazing.
A wonderful mother.
A wonderful partner.
A human being full of life, curiosity, and passion.
You were more than I ever could have hoped for, more than I ever would have dreamed of.
And you loved me in return.
So what do I want for the rest of my life?
That amazing look you give me, your eyes filled with love – I want to deserve that look until the day I die.
And I want to make you laugh, every single day (like I’ve promised before), for the rest of my life.
What do I want? You.
One of my favorite quotes on love, from Toni Morrison, we used on our wedding website: Don’t ever think I fell for you, or fell over you. I didn’t fall in love, I rose in it…I made up my mind, and it’s you. Always and forever, it’s you. I love you.
Matthew, I don’t think we could have met at a more perfect time. Our first few interactions were such a whirlwind of laughter, sweet awkwardness, and a connection so intense that I divulged more about my life than most people hear after a few years. I’ve never been more proud to have someone in my life. Your unceasing love, support, and patience have made me a better mother, daughter, friend – and now – wife. You love my children as I do yours – just like your own. I honestly feel you are my other half. I know you’ll always be here for my children, my family and friends, and me. And I will be here for you. I love you.
If anyone might be interested, for whatever reason, the service we compiled is copied below:
In times past it was believed that the human soul shared characteristics with all things divine. It is this belief which assigned virtues to the cardinal directions; East, South, West and North. It is in this tradition that a blessing is offered in support of this ceremony.
Blessed be this union with the gifts of the East.
Communication of the heart, mind, and body
Fresh beginnings with the rising of each Sun.
The knowledge of the growth found in the sharing of silences.
Blessed be this union with the gifts of the South.
Warmth of hearth and home
The heat of the heart’s passion
The light created by both to illuminate the darkest of times.
Blessed be this union with the gifts of the West.
The deep commitments of the lake The swift excitement of the river
The refreshing cleansing of the rain
The all encompassing passion of the sea.
Blessed be this union with the gifts of the North
Firm foundation on which to build
Fertility of the fields to enrich your lives
A stable home to which you may always return.
Each of these blessings emphasizes those things which will help you build a happy and successful union.
Yet they are only tools.
Tools which you must use together in order to create what you seek in this union.
Now you are bound one to the other
With a tie not easy to break.
Take the time of binding
Before the final vows are made
To learn what you need to know –
To grow in wisdom and love.
That your marriage will be strong
That your love will last
In this life and beyond.
Matthew will now say his vows.
Kate will now say her vows.
Kate and Matthew have chosen to use traditional claddagh rings for their wedding bands. Each part of the claddagh ring has a certain symbolism for the couple – hands for friendship, a heart for love, and a crown for loyalty. They will wear the rings with the heart facing them, demonstrating that they are now a married couple.
Do you have the rings?
Matthew, place the ring on Kate’s finger. Matthew, do you promise to love, honor, cherish, and protect Kate, for as long as you both shall live?
Kate, place the ring on Matthew finger. Kate, do you promise to love, honor, cherish, and protect Matthew, for as long as you both shall live?
We will now have the final blessing over the newly married couple.
May the road rise to meet you,
May the wind be always at your back.
May the sun shine warm upon your face,
The rains fall soft upon your fields.
May you see your children’s children.
May you be poor in misfortune,
Rich in blessings,
May you know nothing but happiness
From this day forward.
May the road rise to meet you
May the wind be always at your back
May the warm rays of sun fall upon your home
And may the hand of a friend always be near.
May green be the grass you walk on,
May blue be the skies above you,
May pure be the joys that surround you,
May true be the hearts that love you.
I now pronounce you husband and wife.