Yesterday marked thirty days as husband and wife. I realize that this is hardly a significant milestone in a marriage, unless you’re a celebrity, but what it did allow me is to take time to pause and reflect on our wedding and our honeymoon. I can’t say it enough: time is moving faster and faster, rushing and hurling itself through days and nights and I feel like I haven’t had a moment to reflect. Time, slow down. Please. When I was younger, in my angst ridden pre-teen years, all I wanted was for time to speed up. To turn thirteen. To turn 16 and drive a car. To graduate from high school and go far away to college. To grow up.
Now that I’m grown up and married, time can slow down, right?
September 8th was the most magical day of my life and, also, the fastest. I spent the night before the wedding at the Belton Chalet with my mom, stepfather and grandmother and awoke to a cold and crisp early fall day. The time between breakfast, a massage, and decorating the dining room for the reception passed in what seemed like a matter of minutes. I had to rush into the shower and was happy that my two dear friends were patient and loving with me as we determined just what the hell to do with my hair and makeup. I am clueless and less than patient in that department, but the glass of champagne eased my penchant for annoyance while my hair was dried and my lashes were curled.
I wasn’t even dressed when a friend announced that Cole had arrived to the Belton and it was time to meet him and take photos. When Cole and I met, after what seemed to me an excruciating long time of watching his back as the photographer shot, step by step, our first meeting, I knew that this was our day. Our most sacred day. And, I’d like to add, that perhaps even Glacier National Park herself knew how grand and mighty this day was as her skies cleared of smoke and not a lick of wind caressed the deep blue waters of Lake McDonald. As our dear friend and officiant Courtney Stone Fullerton, said in her welcome, that Glacier is the grandest cathedral of them all, and I couldn’t have agreed more.
While the DeSmet drifted out on Lake McDonald and the mountains stood in our honor, it was Time who crashed the wedding. When Courtney asked for the rings, I wanted to call halt. Stop the ceremony. I thought, we can’t already be to this part, can we? Why is it going so fast? But this is how life’s most important and savored moments travel through us. I didn’t not actually interrupt the ceremony and instruct our guests to pause and enter into some state of meditation in order to suspend time, but I knew in those moments, between vows spoken between Cole and I, that I would forever cling to those moments in the DeSmet when I told Cole that I was his beloved, no matter what mountain peak or dark valley came upon our trail. No flood could sweep away our love and commitment to each other.
And, later in the evening, at the reception, when I danced with my father, I asked him if he could some how stop time. “Dad, it’s all going to fast,” I pleaded. And he leaned into my ear and replied, “I know, Maggie. I know. It’s how it goes.”
Our small gathering of friends and family danced into the evening and marched to Frida’s, the West Glacier Bar, and we continued to drink, dance, and play games in our wedding attire. The next morning, when I awoke, I realized that what had transpired was not just a wedding ceremony on a boat on Lake McDonald or a series of toasts at the Belton or even our first dance, the Beatles’s “When I’m Sixty-Four”, but rather, the first of many days–although hopefully not as fast as the day we committed our lives in marriage–but of how Cole and I move through each day as husband and wife.
Granted, my first thirty days of marriage have included a wedding, a barn party reception for friends, and two weeks in Tuscany and the Allgau Alps and the next thirty or sixty or four hundred and twenty days may not ever be as eventful or magical as our first thirty, but those days are no less as meaningful as our very first.