We’re Married!

A week ago Ryan and I got married. Looking back now, I’m not sure why it took so long, especially where our relationship has stayed nice and easy-breezy for almost ten years. If anything, I think I was afraid to rock the boat.

In the past, I worried I’d fall into my old control-freak habits like I did with the other two marriages. What if we got married and I changed, and suddenly all the little things that didn’t matter started to matter? After all, that’s what happened before. But to be fair, in past relationships, they weren’t little things I worried about. They were big, relationship-ruining things. Leading up to the wedding day both of the last times, I was in panic mode, wondering if I should back out but thinking it was too late because it would look bad. I ignored the red flags, and once I was married couldn’t ignore them. That really didn’t make me a control freak like I’ve been telling myself for so long. This time it was different.

During an after dinner talk a couple of months ago the conversation came up. It wasn’t a formal proposal, it was more a spin off of a conversation about health insurance. We don’t need to be married to be on the same plan but it occurred to me there was no reason not to. And actually, it might be kind of nice. As the days passed and we talked about it more I got pretty excited. With COVID restrictions still in place we couldn’t have a big ceremony which was fine with me because part of the stress the last two times came from planning. Taking that out of the equation meant it could be more about us, and our union, and not about having a big party. I called Ivy and Trevor and asked what they thought. Ivy said it was long overdue and of course I had her blessing.

Then we told our friends J&M who have been part of our small COVID circle. The media was talking about vaccinations right around the corner, and after a year of not going anywhere, we decided to hit the ground running and go to Las Vegas. Hotels were open there, it wasn’t all that far, and who doesn’t love neon? Six people on a long weekend trip and we’d come home married and happy. A perfect plan.

I’m pleased to say it was perfect. No strings, no stress, no slipups. We decided collectively that since this was not to be a traditional wedding that anything was fair game. We arranged a photo shoot at a place called The Neon Museum, and the ceremony in front of the Welcome to Las Vegas sign. We found a wonderful company called LuvBug Weddings that arranged everything for us, from the planning to the pictures, the limo, the venue, the marriage license…and lots of positive energy throughout the process. We felt bad keeping it a secret from most everyone until the very end but we also didn’t want anyone to make a fuss.

One thing that really made us laugh that I took as a positive sign was when we got stuck together. At my last wedding, which I’ve written about before, it felt like every force in the universe tried to stop the wedding. Our first two venues were destroyed by a tsunami and a hurricane, respectively. The photography equipment didn’t work. It rained. My grandmother fell going into the restaurant. My father had emergency quadruple bypass surgery the day before. My dress ripped…

This time, as we stood on a strip of land with the freeway on either side of us, strangers milling about to get their picture in front of the iconic sign, and airplanes flying overhead, we reveled in our tight, happy group on a lovely spring day. We women wore 1920’s flapper dresses, mine being red just because. Ryan wore a 1920’s style suit and a retro Mickey Mouse bowtie. As the minister said, “you may kiss the bride,” and Ryan did, we moved apart and got stuck.

The microphone clipped to Ryan’s shirt to allow for audio in the recording, impossibly clasped itself into the lace of my dress. The video rolled as we laughed and tried to unhook the clip. Even then, as we worked to separate ourselves I thought of the Universe telling us, “This is your sign that you should be together.”

We went to dinner at a restaurant called The Mayfair Supper Club in the Bellagio (where we stayed). The ceremony was done early and the restaurant not only took us early but gave us an open-window seat facing the fountains. Every twenty minutes or so the fountains shot up with a firecracker-like BOOM. We could feel the spray on our faces as we ate what is arguably the best food I’ve ever had, and the live band performed music from a bygone era. The singers came and talked to us for a bit, gave us a shout out during the next set. The waitress brought me a long stemmed red rose and signature sundae. The picture below was the view from our wedding dinner table. It was magical.

When we finally all went back to our room to enjoy the wedding cake Ivy and Trevor had picked up for us, I was thrilled that it was from Milk Bar. I’d seen the story of that restaurant on Chef’s Table and always wanted to try it. Like everything else, it was not traditional but it was perfect. Delicious and fun and whimsical. Ivy played the wedding march on her phone as we blew out the candles.

Ryan used to tell me, back when we were emailing back and forth, before we talked on the phone or knew we would be a couple someday, that relationships shouldn’t be hard. When it’s right, it all works out. It’s not about constant compromise or fighting or forcing it to work. It should just work. And it does.

Despite not being as thin or young as at the last wedding, I felt pretty. With my lace COVID mask and my short nails and cuticles that I cannot stop chewing, and my unruly silver/white/gray/black/brown hair, and my extra-Carly love handles, I felt good about myself, and happy. It’s comforting to know that I made the right choice all those years ago when I first started talking to Ryan on Facebook. When I told him I liked him “that way” and when we took a leap and changed our relationship status to “in a relationship” before we ever met in real life. I took a bigger leap of faith and moved my and Ivy’s lives to another coast, chasing after a dream. The dream paid off.

To taking a chance on love and happiness.

-Carly G.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.