Today marks nine years since my husband and I said "I do."
In retrospect, December 30th is not a very good day for a wedding but then, we didn't really have a 'wedding' per se.
We were planning one but for some reason which I can't really recall right now, we decided to go ahead and get married at the court house before the end of the year, I think it was something about health insurance or something. So yes, we eloped, with the idea that we'd be having a full scale ceremony in September of 2005. We'd already scoped out sites and had a lot of it mentally planned.
So on the morning of December 30, 2004, we both got up and got dressed. I didn't even shower that day as I recall. I worked in a yoga studio at the time and Mike worked at a small, informal office so I think he was wearing jeans and a sweater. I was wearing yoga pants and my hair was in a pony tail. Why is this important to the story? Because we had no idea what we were walking into.
We got to the records office right when it opened, both of us had to go to work that day. We filled out the forms and then turned them in. The gal at the desk asked us when we wanted to do this. We said, as soon as possible. She said, "Across the street at nine a.m." So we went and got a cup of coffee and waited for the lawyer's office to open.
We shuffled down into his sub-basement office. There were old desks and chairs and "couches" from 1960 and stacks, literally stacks and stacks of books and papers EVERYWHERE. We sat down in what we assumed was the waiting area and other couples began to arrive. Most of them were dressed really nicely and all the women had actually washed their hair that day.
After a short wait, a man who looked remarkably like Santa Claus came out of the back office and called us in. The room was like a big conference room with a giant table and tons of chairs around it. We sat down and he said, "Oh no. Come up here, face each other and hold hands." We had NO idea we were actually going to be saying vows! I guess we just thought he'd be signing off on our paperwork or something but suddenly we are facing each other, holding hands and repeating after Santa.
I just remember "Holy COW, HOLY COW, HOLY COW!" going through my head.
At the conclusion of the vows he asked if we wanted a picture and we both yelled, "NO!" at the same time. Photos could come at the actually ceremony, where my hair would DEFINITELY be washed and I would not be wearing yoga pants.
As we walked out to the cars to head in opposite directions to our jobs, we said to each other, "Holy shit we are married!" It was surreal.
We celebrated with our roommates that night with a very expensive bottle of champagne. It was a great day.
We never did have that ceremony in the Adirondaks the following fall. Turns out I was pregnant with our first son just weeks after our elopement and I was due in early October. A September ceremony was not going to work. Instead, we had a reception a few months later, once the majority of my sickness passed, with family and friends, just prior to leaving for California.
It's hard to believe that was nine years ago! Next year will be our 10th. Maybe we can finally do some formal vows in front of family and friends. To celebrate what we have built together.
I love you my darling husband!