August 29, 2012

our vows.

I hesitated to share our vows at first, hoping to keep them as something sacred and special among our friends and family. Recently, though, I realized that to share our wedding without sharing the most magical of moments isn't really sharing it at all. (And, okay, I've also been hearing from some of our friends and family who would like to see them in print.) And so, the heart of our ceremony:
*      *      *      *     *

My best friend, 
My brightest light,
My husband from this day forward:
You are the greatest, most magnificent man I've ever known.

You've taught me peace and charity, strength and integrity,
the beautiful bliss of life's most simple joys.

You've shown me what it means to be good and true,
what it's like to wake up each day with faith and hope and a fearless, grateful spirit.

I love you for so many reasons, but I love you most for your heart—
Your true and kind and open, compassionate heart.

Our love has always felt both incredible and inevitable—a miracle that's meant to be—
And my most cherished blessing is to know that I'm yours.

Today, surrounded by the ones we love,
I vow to honor, inspire, and respect you for the rest of our days.

I'm yours, Radley, forever and always:
All that I am now and all that I'll ever be.

*     *     *     *     *

As soon as I finished, there were a few tears and a few whispered I-love-yous, then Radley turned to the crowd and said, "This isn't fair — she's a writer!" Everyone died — including me — and it broke the heavy, sentimental air in the most easy, perfect way. (You can see it at 4:44 of the video that Ben put together for us.) Honestly, though, leave it to Radley to make everyone feel so comfortable and make everything between us feel so real. Next, he shared his vows:

*     *     *     *     *


Since the day we met, I knew I'd be up here next to you. I've never wanted to fight for something more in my entire life. Now that we're here today, almost five years later, I couldn't be happier or more excited about our future together. I'm looking forward to every morning waking up next to you, every night going to sleep by your side, every foggy morning run, and every meal shared. I truly can't wait to start this new adventure with you.

There are a lot of things I can't promise, but these things I can:

I promise to be the best husband I can possibly be. I promise to stand next to you through every victory and accomplishment, as well as every defeat and setback. I promise to love you, support you, and encourage you. I promise to laugh with you, be there when you cry, and be your number one fan. I promise to be the best father I can possibly be, and most importantly, I promise to always find time for our love. You truly are my best friend, the smartest person I know, and my soulmate.

Today, in front of all our loved ones, I pledge my love to you for every day of our lives.

*     *     *     *     *

When Radley finished, there were lots of tears. He genuinely blew everyone away, both in what he said and the fact that he'd actually memorized it all. (Seriously, though, that's a lot to remember during one of the most emotional, incredible moments of your life!) The best part? When we turned back to our friends and family, all 175 of them, everything felt so intimate. As strange as it seems, it felt as if there were just ten of us there in the grove. I looked around at all the faces — everyone I've ever loved, everyone he's ever loved — and I felt overwhelmed, buoyed by all the joy.

(Photo by Cooper Carras)


Maura said... [Reply to comment]

This made me tear up, it was so beautiful! Your love is truly inspiring!!

Niken said... [Reply to comment]

your vows are beautiful and genuine. "To wake up each day with faith and hope and fearless, grateful spirit" is the best line i have ever heard :)

Allie said... [Reply to comment]

Oh man these are beautiful. I definitely started getting teary. So well written and heartfelt. :)

Sam | ashore said... [Reply to comment]

got choked up reading these, I can hear both of you saying them in my head. You two are such a great reminder : love is real.

Brittany said... [Reply to comment]

Just beautiful! I don't know you at all, but I really admire the love that you and your husband (husband!) share. So happy for you.

Kayla Poole said... [Reply to comment]

beautiful and true.

and that! cannot wait to see the rest.

Magdalena said... [Reply to comment]

these are so beautiful. thank you for sharing!

Raquel said... [Reply to comment]

I love the vows!! So beautiful! Thanks for sharing them with us!

.Jessica. said... [Reply to comment]

Tears flowing over such beautiful and heartfelt words. How romantic of Radley too; what a perfect gentleman to express his intimate feelings so eloquently. :)
Congrats you two!

Katherine Fischer said... [Reply to comment]

WOW. seriously unreal.
and radley is so adorable!!! i feel like i KNOW him.

Allie said... [Reply to comment]

crying at my cubicle.

this is so incredibly beautiful. i absolutely cannot wait for the day i get to stand up next to 'my one' whoever he may be.

thank you for sharing and giving me hope.

hourglassandbloom said... [Reply to comment]

So lovely, and I agree that sharing them with the world doesn't mean the intimacy is taken away. I am so glad you shared, the vows are just beautiful.


Anna said... [Reply to comment]

This is so wonderful. Thank you for sharing--they are incredibly inspiring and sweet!

Briel said... [Reply to comment]

The vows you wrote were just gorgeous. You really do have a great way with words. And Radley's vows were so sweet. Thanks for sharing such an important part of your ceremony with us!

chrissy said... [Reply to comment]

I definitely got teary eyed reading this post. your love for each other is truly and inspiration and a happy reminder that true love is real and beautiful.

Nicole Marie said... [Reply to comment]

ok cool, now i'm crying!

omg you guys. seriously. i want your love.

Tina Byland said... [Reply to comment]

Gorgeous vows. You are pretty lucky, there, lady! I understand what you mean about sharing your vows online. My anniversary is coming up in about a month and I have been going back and forth about sharing them online, also.

I'm glad you shared yours. :)

RetreatingAndAdvancing said... [Reply to comment]

you vows almost made me cry. they are soo beautiful!

Stella Matthews said... [Reply to comment]

This is really beautiful.Thanks for sharing.

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