I Choose You, Writing the Vows
Writing wedding vows can be a daunting task. It’s a lot of pressure to write something that meticulously expresses your unshakeable commitment of forever. Seriously, f-o-r-e-v-e-r.
It’s a moment that many brides fantasize about—and with good reason. There you are, standing before your betrothed; every eye in the place focused on you in eager anticipation. (Of course they are already marvelling at your unspeakable beauty.) The words flow effortlessly from your mouth in a sing-song of poetic brilliance. Your audience is captivated. The Live Stream video of your vows has gone viral before you’ve even finished speaking them, and you’ve just reduced your partner to a silent, sobbing mess. Victory. You’re the perfect wife.
Now, you just have to sit down and write those words—in reality. And finding those right words to balance everything you want to say in a sniffle-worthy, giggle-inducing, heartfelt eloquence can make even the most noteworthy of Pulitzer-Prize winners glaze over and black out. Writer’s block will just sort of sneak up on you.
One way to help inspire your creativity is to take a momentary break from tradition. Maybe traditional vows just aren’t your thing. Maybe you’re a little offbeat. Try considering a few things that you enjoy together as a couple and then incorporate them into your vows. Game of Thrones fan? Awesome. Why not sneak in some subtle geekery by customizing an exchange between the characters, Jon and Ygritte.
“You’re mine,” she whispered. “Mine, as I’m yours. And if we die, we die. All men must die, Jon Snow. But first, we’ll live.”— George R. R. Martin, A Storm of Swords
Another way to fire up your creativity is to start with a list of questions. What do you love about your partner? What makes you passionate about them? What promises and/or compromises are you willing to make for this person? The answers to these questions will help shape your vows. They can be traditional and serious promises that will serve the strength of your marriage over time, or they can also be quirky, fun, and relevant to the here-and-now. Like “I vow to split the difference on the thermostat,” as Brad Pitt and Jennifer Aniston did when they were married.
And if you’re really stuck, then it might be time to put the wedding vows away for awhile and get a little silly. Taking a break is an important part of writing vows. Just make sure you come back.
– Catherine Thorpe