I’ll tell you what, wedding planning is not for the faint of heart.
It’s a jungle out there!
Even with a wedding date that is 14 months away, churches and reception venues are ALREADY filled up!
My goodness, it’s like the wild, wild west.
I’ve gotta say, the last several days I have spent in a full course press, trying to lock down a church and a venue at coordinating times. And in doing so, Steven and I have been watching a lot of random people’s wedding videos on YouTube. Which…is definitely a strange experience: watching two complete strangers live out the most important, special day of their lives, on a public YouTube video, from a couch in Manhattan, as though it’s the latest Marvel flick.
The happy tears; the private moment beforehand reading the letter from their betrothed; the toasts at the reception, recollecting funny and touching moments from their past. It’s like…I don’t even know you, but here I am watching the intimate details of your life! It’s a little weird!
But granted, it has definitely helped us get a feel for the venues, as we’re planning this thing from across the country!
One thing that has been fun, is envisioning how that day will be for us. Putting ourselves in the picture, if you will.
Dreaming about how it will be for me to get ready, and read a handwritten note from the love of my life. Picturing how handsome Steven is going to look in his tux. Imagining what it’s going to feel like, walking down the aisle, to meet my love at the altar before God and our loved ones. Picturing how I’m going to look and feel in my wedding dress.
All this dreaming actually brings up a lot of emotion for me, because there was a time when I never thought the life I’m living now could ever be a reality.
When I was trapped in my anorexia, and at inpatient, I never thought a life of freedom could exist for me. A life free from ED — free from the fear, the crippling addiction to exercise and schedules and routine, free from a hatred of self, free from the lies I had up in the air in order to manipulate my loved ones — I literally could not even imagine it.
I couldn’t even fathom what “joy” was anymore, because it had been void from my life for so long.
All I had known during those two years in my disease was darkness. The anorexia stripped me of who I was — my personality, my love for others, my love for myself, my passions and drive, my excitement and hope in the future, not to mention: my health. I was a skeleton of myself — a hollow shell, empty of every human emotion other than panic over food, weight, body image and exercise.
I wish I could go back, and show that broken, scared 18 year old girl a glimpse of where she’s at today: at peace with her body, joyful about life, embracing love from an incredible man, free from the guilt and shame from her past…living abundantly.
I would have never believed it. And to be honest, part of me still can’t. Knowing the depths of darkness and despair that ruled my life for so long…the fact that — not only did my body recover physically — but mentally and spiritually…God’s mercy is written over every aspect of my life.
It’s been really quite moving to recollect on just how far the Lord has delivered me from where I once was.
So to close, I just want to share what I’d say to my younger self, scared and alone on her cot at the nurses’ station at inpatient:
It gets better.
There is a life you can’t even imagine, that is out there waiting for you.
A life of abundance that you deserve. A full and joyful existence where, believe it or not, this current suffering will be just a blip on the radar, and you will have grown from it and become stronger because of it.
Don’t lose hope. This isn’t “it” for you.
It gets better.
Have a wonderful weekend, friends. And God bless.
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