April 16, 2009

Planning the Marriage

Last evening was a part of our hectic week as we had our first meeting/counseling session with the minister who will be marrying us. 

I have always been a believer in the idea of pre-marital counseling for EVERYONE. I guess I just beleive that it's important to talk as much as possible about your ideas, beliefs and expectations not only of your future life but also of marriage. Okay...I'm not completely Dr.Phil-like here. I also deep down think that I have to be prepared or over-prepared for almost everything and that I do, and I guess marriage is one of those things. Even before Mr. Swan and I got engaged, I made sure we went through this great set of questions from the NY Times as well as this book, 1001 Questions to Ask Before You Get Married. Yeah, I'm a bit crazy, but I really wanted to make sure that Mr. Swan and I had talked about as many things as possible before I accepted ANY proposal. I think this was especially important for us since we come from very different backgrounds and experiences. Knowing that we were both on the same page or at least talking about our differences was comforting to me. 

Ofcourse now that we are engaged and the wedding inches closer day by day I am requiring us to do even more soul searching. We are going to have not one but TWO different sets of counseling. As I stated above, we started our first set of counseling with the minister that will marry us. Her church has a specific workbook with discussions and...gasp...homework for us to do. It will also be more from a biblical perspective as well and require reading the Bible and understanding marriage from that perspective. While I know my way around a Bible pretty well, it will be interesting to see Mr. Swan navigate this.  I am pretty thankful that he is open-minded about this process and moving forward with our counseling. Our minister seems pretty cool so far, and I am looking forward to working with her (I am also excited that our minister is a woman).

In addition to the counseling with our minister, we'll also be taking a one day workshop for engaged and newly married couples. This one will be completely secular and really emphasize communication and other issues related to keeping marriages alive. 

Why more than one set of counseling? Well I think in the end I knew that almost any minister that we picked to marry us would require us to do some form of counseling anyway. I also wanted to have both religious and secular versions as I think both will have something to offer us. 

Will we be as over-prepared for marriage as I hope? I doubt it, but I guess we'll at least try. 

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