Cody and I had talked about getting married for some time before he asked me to marry him but after getting engaged it felt real. We finally got to make decisions about what we wanted for a wedding now that we were engaged.
I’m a weird person and if you know me, you know that to be true. I think through things way too much. We needed to pick a date. Should we wait almost 3 years until Cody is out of school? No, we decided, we just want to be married. If we do it while he is in school we have Winter Break or over the Summer Breaks that he has when he gets to ISU. We initially settled on next summer since he would not be able to take summer classes next summer. An exact date we never settled on before we changed our minds again.
When our plans were to get married next summer, we were going to do a traditional wedding ceremony with a reception afterward but many things happened that swayed us from desiring the traditional. The first was that we decided that neither of us felt like the traditional thing was really us. We don’t like to dance so what would we do at a reception? We decided we would like to have a board game reception where each table would have a game to play and people could chose what game to play/table to sit at. But while it is our wedding and we knew we could do what we want, I’m an entertainer at heart and neither of us like to see people not having fun. We know many people who wouldn’t have enjoyed the type of reception we really wanted to have. We also didn’t know what kind of money we would have to spend on a wedding. My mom had suggested that they would give us money but never told me an official amount. And with them having been separated for a while and divorce on the horizon, I didn’t feel like it was right to push it so we decided we needed to plan a wedding that we could afford on our own. We also realized that planning is stressful. I don’t like to ask for help especially when the people I would ask are getting a divorce and aren’t too thrilled with the concept of marriage so we decided to do something simple. Finally, my parents said some hurtful things that made me realize that we didn’t need them at our wedding. In fact, we didn’t need anyone there but the two of us.
Feeling somewhat discouraged, we came up with a plan for a simple, affordable, and stress free wedding, we would get married while on vacation, only the two of us with two strangers as witnesses. We planned on January. We decided to move it up because we wanted to be married already and we wanted to be married before the next school year’s FAFSA’s had to be filed so we could get more financial aid since Cody would no longer be a dependent student after getting married and would qualify for more aid. So we picked January with the goal to be married on our 3 year anniversary. But again, we ran into issues. There was the whole legal factor of getting married outside the united states and, when we told our parents, mine were less than thrilled. In fact, each asked if they could come. Divorce is expensive and we didn’t really want anyone on our vacation/honeymoon with us so we changed our plans once again. We shouldn’t have had to. I agree. It’s our wedding to do what we want. But try looking in the eyes of a parent that you’re mad at but still love and telling them that they are not allowed at your wedding.
With a little more research I discovered that the priority deadline for the FAFSA at ISU is mid November so we moved our date even closer which is great for us but with moving it closer, we have less time to plan. For this reason, along with others, we decided to have our wedding at the courthouse. They only charge $10 for the ceremony which leaves us a lot more money to spend on a great vacation. We’ve come to realize that it’s not the wedding that matters and we would rather have an extravagant vacation than an extravagant wedding. There are drawbacks to our decision as there would have been with any option that we went with. They only marry at 1pm on Fridays. This meant that we were limited on the dates we got to pick. We did get a great date. We picked the first Friday of November, November 3, 2017. This is a perfect date for us. First, November has always been my favorite month. My favorite holiday is in November as well as both of our birthdays. With this date as our anniversary, the first week of November holds our anniversary, the second, Cody’s birthday, the third, mine, and finally, the last week of November is Thanksgiving. November has always been a month to look forward to and now it will be even more. Another draw back is that they really only allow 15 people. This means that we won’t be able to have everyone we would like come to the ceremony. We have decided, though, to have a house party afterward. I hesitate to call it a reception because I don’t want people to think that it is going to be some big, fancy event with dancing and alcohol. It is really just going to be a party in the fashion of an open-house just so people can come to celebrate with us if they feel so inclined.
I’ve realized that the grass is always greener. What I mean with this is no matter what people decide to do on their wedding day, there is always some regret. I don’t mean getting married, at least not in my case. But say I have a big extravagant wedding and nice vacation. That sounds great until you have no money in your bank account and are stressing over that. No matter what there would be hints of regret on how the day is executed so we’ve decided to have regret with money in the bank.
My mom is still trying to get me to reconsider the choices we’ve made but we’re happy with these things. I’m not an extravagant person. I don’t regularly wear makeup, fancy clothes, or lots of jewelry. I’m simple and don’t require much from people. And if I’m simple, Cody is simpler. As I mentioned before, I’m a hostess. If we had a big party or celebration, I’d be more concerned with how others are doing than with having fun and that’s not what I want. Cody and I will have a blast on our vacation, together and that is what we’ve decided is more important and more “us.”