Somewhere—between all the sex I haven’t had, the patience I wish I had, and the excitement they think I have—I got sick of being engaged.
I still haven’t decided if feeling like I ‘should’ be excited killed it or if it’s actually just not exciting. Either way, with under three months left, I feel stuck.
Eight months ago, Kasey & I wouldn’t have dreamed of getting married this early. We always assumed that we’d wait until summer of 2016 when we both graduated. Long story short, a near-death experience & possible church plant rolled through our life. After both passed, we knew there wasn’t any point in waiting.
So we did the thing our own way. With our knees bumping in a crowded breakfast diner in small-town Iowa, I asked her dad (police officer, kid you not) for her hand in marriage. He told me I’d grown on him like a wart & that as long as I kept my pecker in my pants he & I would be OK.
A few hours later, we whisked away to a podunk little pawn shop: there, through a path filled with pornos & gun racks lit by fluorescent lights, we bought our ring from a balding man named Doug while “Don’t Cha” by the Pussycat Dolls played in the background.
Welcome to our life, dear friends & readers.
I don’t know why, but it feels like I’ve wasted the last four months of engagement. I’d guess it’s partly because I’ve been wishing I could fast-forward through it. It’s been hard not having sex. It feels like we’ve given everything else.
I used to think that people who couldn’t wait to have sex when they originally committed to waiting after the covenant ceremony were just horny & impatient.
Now I realize they’re just like us: horny & impatient, but still human.
A couple weeks ago, our friend & pastor Steve Wiens invited us to get eloped or just choose our season.
So we’re not getting eloped.
But what’s it mean to choose a season you don’t want?
We find ourselves caught in a wilderness we don’t want awaiting an Eden we can’t provide for ourselves. I wish we’d elope. I really do, actually. Avoid the ceremony but keep the covenant. Skip the clothes & entwine bodies. End the fear & find the summer night’s whimsy.
But we won’t.
So welcome to our struggle, friends. It goes beyond what we do and don’t do when no one else is around, where we return & where we don’t after a long day.
We’re struck by an eerie notion that everything either is or can become more beautiful than I’m seeing it. It’s electric with wonder & stuffed with goodness.
But then there’s the raw stuff of my life.
And that’s a whole different world.
That one’s electric with family conflict & stuffed with tension. In that world, words like ‘radical’ and ‘extraordinary’ make me feel tired. That’s because in that world, I spend more time figuring out how to cram in a House of Cards episode & still get a solid 8 hours than I do trying to be uncommon.
In that world, I’m trying to make beauty out of life’s mess.