Thanks to the San Mateo County Chapel, the entire ceremony was streamed live to those members of our family who were unable to make it. Unbeknown to us, the stream was also recorded!
It was important to both of us that our ceremony be very personal so we decided to write our own vows.
Three years ago, about a year after moving to the Bay Area, I decided to try a dating site for the first time. It was OkCupid, and although that isn’t how I met you, Matthew, I did meet some really great people who became friends from it: Avery, our photographer; Colin, here with me today; and Jessica, through Colin, who he found on OkCupid.
A few nights ago while writing this I went back to check and see what my profile said back in the day, to see if I found what I was looking for.
An excerpt: “I moved to the Bay Area at the end of last year for work but I’m looking for my partner in crime to roam the streets of SF with and take on every creperie one calorie at a time…”
Another section mentions my passion for gaming and how I’m looking for a “Player 2 to call my own”.
And fast forward a couple years, here I am, counting calories with you, roaming the streets of SF with you, solving puzzles with you, playing games with you, and being a team. We’ve eaten many crepes together, and I look forward to every crepe calorie in our future, and every adventure we haven’t yet been on.
So I did, I found the right person to be in a relationship with. But how did I know you were the right person to marry and spend the rest of my life with?
Well, when I lived in Portland I had a friend named Kit. Kit had a boyfriend she had been with for a while, and she got engaged to him while I was still living there. I was going through a really messy breakup and feeling pretty low about the prospect of ever finding someone to fall in love with again, let alone marry and spend the rest of my life with. I asked her at what point she knew, she knew THIS was the man she would marry. And she told me this, “When you find someone you can’t even IMAGINE not having in your life, then THAT is the one you can’t live without, that is the one you should marry.”
Well, even when we were just friends and roommates, you were someone I never wanted to imagine not having in my life. It took a while for me to realize it, but I couldn’t be happier that I did.
You have taught me that two people with respect, trust, and open communication can be far stronger and happier than each could ever be alone. You are the strength I didn’t know I needed, and the joy that I didn’t know I lacked.
I vow to support you, to care for you, push you to reach your goals, and inspire you to create new ones.
I vow to put your needs and feelings above all others, and I vow to love you fiercely, as long as I shall live.
In a great relationship, you should always be learning new things, and the first lesson I learned from you is the importance of good communication. In fact, as you know, we almost never dated, simply because I never actually said the words “would you like to go on a date?”.
Therefore my first vow to you is that I promise to always tell you exactly how I feel, and to always listen to what you have to say to me in return.
You have always encouraged me to be better, to push myself harder and to try new things. Without your guidance, inspiration, and let’s be honest, a little bit of nagging, I never would have lost 80lbs, ran a half marathon or had many of the incredible new experiences of the past year.
Therefore my second vow is that I promise to always be open to new ideas and experiences, and to always work hard at being the very best version of myself that I can be.
When I called your Dad to ask for his blessing to marry you, he asked me what I loved the most about you. I told him that I loved how genuine you are, that you always say what you mean and are unflinchingly honest. I have always admired that quality in you and strive to apply that philosophy to my own life.
Therefore my third vow is that I promise to always tell you the truth and to always be open to hearing the truth from you.
When I look around at other successful relationships, I see a partnership where two people have come together to make something that is greater than the sum of the parts, and where each person brings their individual skills and talents to make up for what the other person lacks.
Therefore my fourth vow is that I promise to always kill the spiders in your room and clean up whenever the cats are sick.
Someone once told me that “real love is an unconditional commitment to an imperfect person”. We are both definitely imperfect people.
Therefore my final vow is that I promise to always be committed to you, and to our marriage, no matter what life throws at us. I promise to always be there to celebrate with you in your successes and to comfort you when you fail. I promise to always be there alongside you in the good times and the bad. But most of all I promise to always love you.