Monday, July 2, 2012

It's a good thing we love each other

That's exactly how I feel about the business of getting married - because let's face it, it's a business. This process has been fun, exciting, and aggravating all at the same time. It's almost a full-time job really - and of course our own special wrinkle of me being american and he being french is making it even more fun (please note the sarcasm here).The legality and bureaucratic nature of getting married is the part of the marriage process you never see and probably never hear about until you are going though it - you only hear about vendors, and venues, and dresses, and flowers...which of course are the fun  & exciting parts. So I think it's a good thing we love each other.

So far, just in legal documentation, I have spent close to $2000 in legal fees and government agency fees - most are government fees. It's like some of these documents are required so that someone in our respective countries can review them. I have had to do two contracts - done by a consulate approved attorney, a new version of my birth certificate - indecently the state of NJ spelled my name wrong on the new issue so that has made this even MORE fun, 4 apostiles - for those of you that don't know what this is, it's state-issued document certifying that other legal documents (ones that have already been certified) are in fact real.  So in other words I had to get legal docs to verify my legal docs were in fact legal. It's a good thing we love each other.

But my big question is what does all of this have to do with getting married? Why do I need a piece of paper that ends up costing about $500 by the time it has been created, notarized, stamped, translated, and certified that says I am who I am when the purpose of the original document is identification.  Then, just when you think you have done everything - you find out your lease doesn't count as legal proof you live where you say you do, no you need a utility bill - which of course we don't have because we pay the landlord directly. SO we need to find something else. The time we have spent collectively getting documentation is probably triple to what we have spent on the"fun" stuff. It's a good thing we love each other.

Now we get to the "fun" stuff - I am not going to lie - this wedding has gotten much bigger and fancier than was intended. Initially, we were talking about 40 - 50 closest friends and family in a destination (here). Well since we are older, that also means we have older families - people that are very important to us but traveling to St Barth is not an now we are having THREE weddings. We are getting the original, but also having two others - and that's ok because we will get to celebrate what is really something neither of us expected with most of the people we care about - and that's REALLY what this should be about. It's not about a piece of paper (or 20), it's not about the perfect dress, ring, music, or venue, its about sharing something so very very special with the people we care about. So in the end, the paperwork and hassles will be worth it. We will say "I do" or I think in this case it's "je fait" and then we will party - to celebrate what is really happening - two people that found each other on a beach in St Barth and decided that spending time with each other forever is what we wanted. So I guess it IS a good thing we love each other :)

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