An Ode to the Journey

I am writing from a very new space in my heart tonight. Here we go, 2017. 

I'll begin by admitting how frequently I've overused the quote "Life is a journey, not a destination" without true discernment of the meaning. I've purchased various journals with these very words on the cover. I've offered this quote as advice to others in times they sought remembrance of what life's about. I almost even had it permanently tattooed onto my skin. Since I'm a naturally curious, experience-seeking gal, I was really enchanted by the words. But it was just today that I assuredly connected with the meaning. 

Today marks exactly 5 months until I marry my Everyday Sweetie, twice over... (yes, we're having two weddings). The first formality is a modern spin on the traditional Ghanaian Engagement ceremony & the second wedding, the very next day, is the vow exchange. Since we became engaged in 2015, I have been so uncomfortable with the wedding planning process. It's just unnatural to my spirit! I can organize a stupendously thoughtful & detailed trip to Egypt, complete with a flexible (yet comprehensive) itinerary in one long afternoon's sitting. Inter-country flights & all. Easy. And with pleasure. I can produce a month's worth of photographic marketing material for a multi-million dollar campaign in 4 business days. Done. No stress here. But I am at my wit's end trying to understand "envelope etiquette" & deciding which tent size to rent & prompting my bridesmaid to order their dresses. This is stupid! I have a real issue with the way wedding culture has me enveloped in this itchy, emotional, wool swaddle! I'm stifled in here! When my fiancé & I decided to do this wedding thing, I did not envision how much afflictive, focused work it would take to plan these two days of our lives. I thought I was just committing to a big dance party with my sweetie, surrounded by our people.  

So, today, here I am with yet another lesson in life reflected before me. The greatest epiphany began with a subtle message. After observing my defeatist demeanor before work, my fiancé wrote to me this morning " I got your back and you have mine. We will get through this and many more things together." (accompanied by a gif of Woody from Toy Story repeatedly saying: "You'll be fine, partner"). A light bulb did not go off. It was moreover a lightening bolt that struck me back to center. In the midst of feeling so uncomfortable towards all the awkward tasks that required my energy, I became only fixated on the end game. While "getting to the aisle" is incredibly important, we did not agree to marry one other just to wear a tux & a {fabulous} dress for a day, kiss in front of our folks & hit the honeymoon. Marriage is NOW. Marriage is the gif he sends to accompany his message because he knows I'm visual & I'm captivated by all things Pixar. Marriage is examining your partners' temperature & knowing when he or she needs some cheerleading. Consequent to being overwhelmed, he reminded me that we're in this together. Today, I realize that we're not getting married to have a wedding. We're having a wedding to prepare for marriage. The rest of our lives are being built today. With each moment we collaborate & problem solve together, we're gaining along this connected journey. 

To a lifetime more of journeying. And Beyond.