I've just read this post from the wonderful A Practical Wedding. Thank God for wedding bloggers, because from reading the panic-inducing You and Your Wedding et al, you'd never know that anyone else felt like this.
That's not to say that I don't like weddings, or that I'm not happy to be getting married. But that's also not to say that I wouldn't also be happy if we were still ticking along as before.
I realise this sounds confusing.
Once upone a time, I was *desperate* to get married, or at least engaged. Bf was away a lot and, unromantic as it sounds, I wished to be his next of kin; the person that mattered most. I wanted to be official, to be something other than his 'girlfriend'. After eight years, the 'girlfriend' title seemed daft.
But he wasn't up for it: "I'm sure we will one day", but "it's not like we have a house together, or have kids, or you're pregnant" (haha); "it's expensive", "other people's expectations"; etc etc. "We're happy as we are." And we were.
So I got used to it. "It's ok", I thought; "I'm a feminist and a modern girl". I'd never fantasised about how I might walk down the aisle.We could be one of those couples that just doesn't, and it's fine. In fact, that's a good stance, I could cope with it and indeed embrace it. And I did, and I was happy.
I could have asked him myself but knowing his stance, that would have been a little childish and desperate...though I did consider it...
But then he changed his mind and became the marrying sort, rather unexpectedly. The proposal was distinctly un-Richard Curtis-esque, as I freaked out and hyperventilated in a manner most unbecoming to said feminist/modern girl.
So am I happy to be getting married? Yes, I am enormously happy, though I'm still coming to terms with what it might mean to be a wife, and a 'Mrs'. It has also made every member of both of our families and all of our friends very happy indeed.
But if he hadn't asked me (or I him)?
I can't say that I'd be chasing him like a puppy for a ball, desperate for a ring. We'd be together, having the same fun we always did, and I'd be extremely happy too.
Maybe it's sacrilege to suggest that getting married hasn't made me a happier person.
It has made me all sorts of other things: closer to bf, more contented, satisfied, forward-looking and it has made many other people happy.
But I'm no happier, overall, than I was before. And I'm actually glad.
There were no holes for the wedding to plug: everything was great, and it continues to be so. I am still as happy.