This Pledge of Mine


Where did all of my words go?

For over a month this blog has been stagnant.  Several weeks have passed since the number of pages completed for my debut novel has progressed (yes, I am ever so sluggishly working on a book).  Even a simple grocery list has lately felt like time and nouns squandered.  All other written endeavors of mine have been stalled, set aside so I can focus wholly on one looming deadline.

“Writing marriage vows is tough,” I keep telling people as the fixed date for their completion grows ever nearer.

“Are you kidding me?” they usually scoff in some manner of the like.  “You’re a journalist.  Writing is your thing.  This should be easy for you!”

They are right about that; a mere few lines should be nothing at all for a word enthusiast to churn out.  So why have I been having such trouble coming up with something to say in those moments before I kiss my bride?  Perhaps I have been taking these marital verses too seriously, fixated on the depth of a symbolic and lawful union that feels demanding of some high standard of eloquent prose.  Though that has rarely been my style when it comes to the relationship between my fiancé and I.

My earliest communications to her were MSN messages oversaturated with exceedingly mushy emoticons (L)(K)(F).  Later in our romance, I found myself continuously immersed in post-midnight caffeine benders, penning high school love letters sprinkled with lyrics from Finch and The Used.  More recently was my proposal to her, a goofy rewrite of The Night before Christmas complete with numerous odd references and the phrase “Why the face?”

Looking back, I see that most of everything I have written for or about my future spouse has been corny and lighthearted, but with an honest basis in unwavering adoration.  This is the same simple manner in which I finally resolved to approach the words I will recite to her the day we wed.  As of now my vows are complete, and I feel pretty okay about them, whether they be steeped or lacking in expression.

In case my betrothed should read this, I shall provide no spoilers about what those oaths contain.  Perhaps they feature song lyrics or read like a children’s rhyme.  Quite possibly they are terse, clumsy, and downright groan-inducing.  For certain, however, they reflect a profound and insatiable love, and beyond that most essential requisite their contents will not matter as much as I have been acting as though they will.  What will count far more will be the amount of heart and effort I put into the marriage itself, which I intend to be every little bit I have.

No more stressing about vows.  All they are is the herald of a much more meaningful and lasting experience, and that is something I am so ready for.  Bring on the matrimony!

– Cory Stumpf


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