“3 month engagement!? Are you pregnant???”
I kid you not! This was an actual comment made when I told someone our wedding date! It took me a little off guard, but was made even more hilarious by the fact that Josh and I did not have sex until after we got married.
You might be like that person and think that the only reason for a short engagement is a pregnancy, but I am here to give you a few more reasons why I feel like it was the best decision for us and why it could be a good decision for you too!
1. Encourages Simplicity & Decisiveness
Before Josh and I got engaged, one of the goals I made for 2016 was to plan a simple and intimate wedding. Over the years, I have seen how out of control weddings can get with the whole production mentality and I went into wedding planning wanting to combat that. Having a short engagement actually helped a ton with this because there wasn’t any time to create this elaborate “for show” event! We only had time to focus on the basics and a few special things, which organically kept our wedding from becoming a huge production.
On top of helping to strip down decisions to the important (to us) things, the shorter timeline also created a sense of urgency in decision making. If you are deep in wedding planning you know that there are so many decisions to make. I’ve compared it to building a house where you are making choices everyday, sometimes as tedious as selecting the style or color of a door hinge. You could literally research flowers all day long for weeks on end. I mean, come on, they are so pretty and there are so many different things you could do, but can you imagine doing that with each element of the decor, food, moment, music, attire, etc. To pick my bouquet, I saw a picture of one that I loved (that was actually designed by the florist I booked, Root Floral, so I knew she could it!) and just went with that!
Also, with a shorter timeline, you don’t have time to run across any new ideas or change your mind on things you have already checked off your list. Besides, making changes comes with it’s own set of issues as you try to update vendors and can get confusing.
2. Limits Sexual Temptation
Josh and I decided before we started dated that we weren’t going to have sex before we got married. We didn’t decide that because it was easy, but because it was worth it to us. We believe that God designed sex to between a husband and wife and it is most fulfilling in the context of marriage. Side Note : If you have never heard of a 31 year old virgin, you have now. It’s not weird. It’s rare, but not weird, so do not be embarrassed by it if you find yourself in the same position. Josh actually cried when I told him I was, because he saw the virtue in it.
Abstaining is not always easy. As you grow in intimacy in a relationship, there is a natural urge to want to match your emotional and spiritual connection with a physical, so there is definitely a battle going on. Knowing all that, we knew we did not want to prolong the battle throughout a long engagement.
Once you see a light at the end of the tunnel, it actually becomes a little easier. Towards the end, we went through times where we didn’t even kiss a ton just so we didn’t tempt ourselves. We didn’t lose any kind of intimacy though. Josh, who’s love language is physical touch, gets just as much from me sitting next to him with my head on his shoulder as he does from kisses. Don’t let anyone tell you that you NEED to be physically intimate to feel a closeness with each other.
3. Restrains Bride-zilla
Y’all… after being a bride I totally get how easy it could be to turn into a bride-zilla! You are constantly the center of attention, people are giving you compliments, buying you gifts, throwing you parties, and serving you as you plan the wedding. On top of that, people are actually saying “It’s all about you!” (nevermind that guy you are marrying) and that your should soak in every second of this bride-centric season. Whew… I am getting a little Diva-ish just thinking about it. Lol.
I specifically did not want to be a bride too long, because I knew that with time I would grow used to being the center of attention and would be in for a shock when it ended. You hear way too often about women having “post wedding blues” and I think this is a big part of it. The environment of being a bride pretty much sets you up to become selfish or to think that everything is about you and your wedding. The longer an engagement you have, the more you get accustomed to this mind set.
Is it possible to have a longer engagement and not turn into a nightmare bride? Of course!!! But I just didn’t want to have to deal with the temptation of it!
Even with being conscious about it, it can still happen. You got to read about mine Monday. And because we were lucky enough to have those glowing moments captured by our sweet Whitney, here is picture of bride-zilla Natalie for your entertainment. The most fake smile I could put on and a sister and mother, doing everything possible to chill me out.
4. Allows You to Get Back to Your Calling
Maybe it’s just because it felt like it took forever to figure out my calling, but I feel very protective of it. I honestly receive so much joy as I work in it and at it!
For me, planning a wedding did not enhance my mission to speak to women of God about the truths He calls us to. It honestly did not even add to my new role as a Godly wife. Wedding planning to me, was just that, planning the wedding that would lead to the marriage that was to be the focus. Our wedding day was so beautiful and meaning and just perfect for us, but it was one day. I couldn’t justify spending forever to plan a day, when I wanted to focus on forever! I have devotionals I want to write, new ideas I want to share, and dreams I want to make happen and I was so ready to get back to using my free time to pursue those things!
I really hope I gave you guys some things to consider when deciding on how long you want your engagement to be! If you have jumped on the short engagement band wagon, but are thinking “How is it even possible to plan a wedding that quickly?!?” then come back later this week and I will share some tips and some resources on what made it easier for me!
Finally Met Lewis Mega Blog Post Series – Week 1
Finally Met Lewis : Wedding Photos Part #1
Finally Met Lewis : Wedding Photos Part #2
4 Reasons to Have a Short Engagement
Tools & Resources for Stress-Free Wedding Planning (Free Printable)
Why I Loved Being a 30-Something Bride
Finally Met Lewis Mega Blog Post Series – Week 2