Today I want to share a piece of writing that is very personal to me. A few months ago, my younger brother and his lovely fiancee (now his wonderful wife) asked me to write and read a reading during their wedding ceremony in July. I was touched and honoured to be asked and spent months writing, deleting and rewriting my thoughts on marriage. I got very frustrated putting something together because everything I wrote either came off as cliched or failed to capture the importance of the union they were about to enter in to. Then I had a revelation…
I realised I was approaching it from the wrong angle, so I decided to write about how I feel about my marriage and how that can perhaps give them some guidance for theirs. So, for their beautiful wedding ceremony held in a clearing in the woods, I wrote about growth. I hope you enjoy it and join me in wishing the newlyweds every happiness in their marriage. Here is to Oliver and Melissa!
Today you Plant the Seed
Today you plant the seed of a good marriage. It is placed into the earth underneath your feet, beneath the grass and the moss, and nourished by the vows you say on this day and in this place. The commitment you make to each other is a charm that whispers “grow my love, and we shall grow with you”.
Today, you make strong roots – tubers and rhizomes that will withstand the toughest of times, all because they are forged by your love for each other. What form your marriage will take, whether it be a mighty oak or even a plentiful forest of flora, is up to you. You are the guardians of this seed and you will nurture it tenderly as the years go by.
Today you promise to share the best parts of yourself and not to conceal those parts of you that are damaged and scarred, knowing that your imperfections – those broken branches that you carry with you – are the things that you love most about each other. You have made the choice not to fix these flaws, but to appreciate them for the unique way in which they make your characters blossom.
Today you celebrate your union, your friendship and your love. You do so with an offering: the gift of your future, making the claim that you, out of every atom, every fibre, every human, are the one that I have chosen to share my future with – not only to share it, but to be my future.
Today you plant the seed of a good marriage but tomorrow, and on the many days after, you will get to witness it bloom. Each and every one of us here, will be watching with you.
Words and images (taken at Kew Gardens) are my own.