I put off writing these vows, because I felt so much pressure. I mean, this is a gay wedding: the masses expect at least one uncomfortable musical number. And I wanted these vows to be perfect for you. They needed to be a mixture of funny, sweet, charming, clever, but totally cool and chill, because, to me, you are the perfect mixture of funny, sweet, charming, clever and totally cool and chill. You are an amazing person who brings so much joy and happiness and princess tiaras and Uintah Hiking and trips and wonderful stories into the lives of those around you. You deserve only the best vows.
Unfortunately, I am far from a perfect man or the perfect vow writer. Just this morning actually, I left the stove on. Yesterday, I left the car running in an enclosed space. I may be trying to kill us.
Regardless, I realized all of that doesn’t matter, because even after you have had to turn off the sink, which I left running all night (AGAIN), you still think I am a wonderful person. Even after we fight over the amount of times I play Dungeons and Dragons, which to you should be zero, you still tell me through tears that I am perfect. To be fair, you have cried thinking too hard about the ending to It’s a Wonderful Life, so the bar is low.
I will not say that you make me a better man, (mostly because you explicitly told me that I am not allowed to put that in my vows). Instead, I will say that, even if I am not perfect, or if these vows are kind of cheesy, or if my jokes sound like they were stolen from a sassy baby-boomer, you always make me feel like the best draft of myself.
The first word I said to you was “shalom.” I was trying to be clever.
The first thing you said to me was, “with a greeting like that, how can I Passover you.” You were actually clever.
I found out quickly after that this would be a pattern for our relationship. Me trying, you succeeding, and somehow satisfied with me just trying.
You were patient and calm as I worked through my stubbornness and anxieties caused by a fear that two people on opposite ends of the country could never really build a life together.
You were the dreamer and I was the pragmatist. You somehow knew things would work out just fine.
Eventually I learned to plant my pragmatism in your dreaming, deciding that your faith and enviable ability to find success were enough of an assurance for me.
Over the next few years I got to know you. I learned you were kind, sometimes to the point that people take advantage of you. I learned you were smart, but still somehow not smart enough to remember to turn off the stove before you leave the house. I learned you were funny, even if not great at telling a story. I learned you were thoughtful, once to the point that you sent me on a month-long scavenger hunt through an entire city so I could collect notes about how much you appreciated me. I learned you were a hard-worker, except when I need help in the yard. I learned you were very good at karaoke by being so bad at it.
I learned you were truly the best person on this planet. No qualification. No hyperbole. Just, actually, the best person.
As soon as I learned that, I knew that no matter how pragmatic and stubborn and anxious I might be, I couldn’t Passover you either.
~It Just Gets Stranger