As a wedding professional, vows interest me. They interest me so much so that I named my company after them. When I went to look up what a vow was, it was really a very simple statement.
Vow: a solemn promise
Okay, so wait, what did solemn mean?
The first two definitions seemed a little too formal. Yet, the third definition meant something to me.
Solemn: characterized by deep sincerity
Before I started in the industry, I was intimated by vows. I thought to myself, ‘when I get married, I am not going to say my personal feelings out loud.’ So, my wedding came and went and I didn’t. I let the officiant guide our ceremony and I choose from a list of meaningful sentiments. Please don’t get me wrong, my ceremony was beautiful and I loved every moment of it. It was perfect for us, at the time.
As I started to take on more clients, I realized that lots of couples had the same feelings towards vows. Either they didn’t want to be the center of attention or they were not sure of what to say. Perhaps it was a combination of nerves and uncertainty around the topic.
I’m going to get a little personal here for a moment and bear with me as I promise you’ll appreciate what I’m about to say (see what I did there).
As my husband and I started navigating married life, we found there started to be a disconnect. We would forget to say the little things to one another and we had a hard time in general communicating.
We thought it was best to go and see someone together to help work through some of these bigger issues. After a few sessions with our therapist, we realized we weren’t communicating. Not only were we not communicating, we weren’t communicating in a way that we understood each other. We were forgetting what the other person needed. We were only remembering the ways in which we hoped to be communicated to, but here’s the catch- we never told each other that! Instead we were pretending like we were mind readers and we would telepathically know what the other person was wanting.
I make promises out loud to my clients all the time and I keep them:
I promise that they will have an unforgettable day.
I promise that I will ensure the day runs smoothly.
I promise and I promise because I go above and beyond to stick to those promises.
Yet, I was forgetting the promises that I made to my husband. I forgot them because I never wrote them down. I never said them out loud. I never held myself accountable to the words that would turn into actions.
On our two-year anniversary, I set out to do a vow renewal. My husband was completely on board. We took the time to write our own vows and read them to each other on top of a train track in Victoria, B.C. The vows were attainable, they were promises we knew we could keep but we knew it was important to say them out loud to each other.
Vows don’t need to be formal, remember when you would pinky promise your best pal something on the playground?! Think of this like a sincere pinky promise. A pinky promise that you dig down deep to say. Don’t wait for a formal time to say them. Write them down and say them to each other on a date night. Write them down on a piece of paper and put it in your nightside table. You also don’t need to be married to share promises with your partner. It is meaningful no matter what type of relationship you have.
Vows are important. Vows are promises that set the tone for your marriage or your relationship. They help you to become a better communicator and understand your partner. So, whether you want to say them out loud to your friends and family at your ceremony or say them privately to your partner, I promise you won’t regret it.
So, if a vow is a sincere promise- I think that sounds a little less daunting, don’t you?