Approaching wedding day brings reflection, renewed love

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Editor’s Note: Author’s name was removed at the author’s request. Oct. 13, 2015

It is five days before my wedding. People keep asking me if I am excited about the big day. I am very excited, but some of my excitement has been chipped away over the course of my 14-month engagement. I have worried about the logistics of the big day, of course. Will I trip on my heels walking down the aisle? Will the DJ show up? Will the cake table fall over? Will it rain?

However, my deepest worry involves much more than the logistics of that day. Instead, it involves my upcoming vow to spend the rest of my life with someone.

Since I have been engaged, I have had countless people warn me against walking down the aisle. Most of these people have suffered after going through the emotional agony of a divorce themselves.

Currently, 50 percent of all American marriages end in divorce. I often wonder to myself if these 50 percent of people go into the marriage knowing that divorce is a possibility. Jennifer Gauvain, author of “How not to marry the wrong guy,” recently conducted a study that revealed that 30 percent of divorced women knew on their wedding day that they were marrying the wrong man. The top reasons cited for still going through with the wedding despite their concerns included: “(1) We dated for so long I didn’t want to waste all the time we had invested, (2) I don’t want to be alone, (3) He’ll change after we get married, (4) It is too late/too embarrassing/too expensive to call off the wedding, (5) He is a really nice guy and I don’t want to hurt his feelings.”

I became alarmed because some of these reasons did apply to me. My fiancé and I have been dating for a long time, I don’t want to be alone and he is a really nice guy whose feelings I don’t want to hurt.

After more thought, however, I recognized these factors alone did not indicate inevitable divorce. I don’t want to be alone because I enjoy spending time with my fiancé. I do not want to hurt him because I love and care for him.

We have been dating for a long time because we work well together.

A committed marriage is extremely important to me, and I think the institution of marriage ought to be better protected. Often, people may have legitimate reasons for divorce, but in some situations, I think marriage is entered into too lightly. I recognize it might sound concerning that I have fears about what should be the happiest day of my life. In my mind, however, most people who fully consider the magnitude of a marriage vow will probably share similar fears.

Forever is a long time, and that fact alone is intimidating. Forever will have its joyous moments but forever will also have its challenges. Forever is unpredictable and full of changes. Forever is not easy. This Saturday, I vow to marry my best friend, for richer or poorer, for better or worse, in sickness and in health, forever.

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