Revelations: Blessed marriages come in all sizes
Have you ever seen the chick humor 2008 movie "27 Dresses?"
Subtract about half of those bridesmaid dresses, and I could rival Katherine Heigl's character, Jane, for participating in an onslaught of weddings.
I'm always elated when one of my girlfriends announces impending nuptials. And even more thrilled when they want me to stand beside them in a pretty dress while they vow to love, honor and cherish their husbands.
I've been a bridesmaid about 11 times and served as maid of honor three times.
I can't remember the last wedding I attended as a guest.
For the past year and a half, I've been waiting for a couple of my girlfriends to announce engagements.
I knew they were one romantic weekend, birthday or getaway from transitioning from boyfriend-girlfriend to a betrothed couple.
My girlfriend, Laura, and her boyfriend, Zach, were one of those couples.
I knew eventually they would let me know, but month after month came and went, and Laura made no such announcement.
So you can imagine my surprise when I received a text from Laura this week requesting assistance writing her vows.
Here's how that conversation went down:
Me: "LOL. Please explain. Did I miss the announcement?"
Me: "And congrats gorgeous!"
Laura: "No. We're really unconventional. No proposal. Wedding just me and him July 13."
Laura: "We'd like to have a party after we're settled in the house and have everybody over. Maybe in the fall."
A few text exchanges later, I told Laura her wedding plans with "sort-of" fiance Zach, was the "coolest thing I've ever heard."
A pastor friend of Zach's is marrying them. She'll wear something simple and so will he.
There will be no grand Facebook announcement or cutesy request for me to be in her wedding.
There will be no arguments about cakes and caterers or discussions about the rules of bachelor parties.
It will be a private party of three and maybe a few drinks after the vows.
I can't think of a better way for my friend to enter into marriage.
For the past several years, Laura has been growing in her faith and relationship with the Lord.
We've spent many hours on the phone talking about our faith walks and our relationships with spiritually challenged men.
We've seen each other through breakups and encouraged each other to continue seeking guidance from the Lord always. She always prayed for God to send her a husband who was his pick and not hers.
When I met Zach about a year ago, I knew he was that man. There was something different about Laura when she was with Zach.
She was confident and relaxed and happy. Oh man, was she happy.
I've never heard that girl giggle so much than when she was talking about Zach, and Laura loves to giggle.
They had only been dating for a month or so when I met him, but they already knew they'd found their forever. Zach told me a year ago that he had already picked the song he planned to dance with her the night they walked down the aisle.
I'm dying to ask him if he still plans to dance to that song in July.
This week, Laura's surprise text announcement was a sweet reminder about marriage and weddings. At the altar, when two friends and lovers make vows before God and family to love, honor and cherish until death, they better know they would want to make those vows with or without a 5-carat diamond, $40,000 party and 10 to 15 bridesmaids wearing Vera Wang's latest collection of magenta strapless cocktail dresses (that they can totally alter and wear again).
It was a reminder that love is unique and special and as blessed a union as a party of three as it is as a party of 300.
It seems for Laura and Zach, they don't want all the fuss. They just want each other and God's blessing - till death.
Congratulations, friends. You make love look easy and forever short.
Jennifer Preyss is a reporter for the Victoria Advocate. You can reach her at 361-580-6535 or firstname.lastname@example.org or @jenniferpreyss on Twitter.