We Saved the Kiss!

My parents said that from the age of three, I talked and dreamed of getting married. I remember times when we went to visit my Grandma. I would sneak upstairs and pull out the special, mysterious white box that held Momma’s veil she wore for her wedding. I was almost afraid to touch it so I would just look. As I grew older, I would take it out and put it on. I dreamt of how it would look on me as I walked down the aisle and how I would feel as a beautiful bride. I wondered how my story would pan out and who the person that I was dreaming about would be.

Since getting married wasn’t happening in the time frame I thought it should, I realized being content in singleness was going to be important. This became my new goal. Pretty soon a new excitement came over me. I still hadn’t met my husband! That exciting day was still in my future ready to be discovered! So, I decided to stay busy. I worked at a local bank fulltime. I was involved with ministry at our church. I had hobbies. I wrote books and poetry. I studied how to be a Doula and helped Mom and Dad on the farm. I read books on how to be a good wife. I wrote in a diary and…I had a plan. Each day I determined that what I did was in preparation for marriage and my husband. It wasn’t always easy. Often there were tears and heartache. There were times when I wanted to give up hoping. I really had a dream and desire to be a wife and mommy, but at times, I didn’t think it would happen.

Sometimes the Lord surprises us when we are least expecting it. Maybe those are the times when we have finally given up our will for His will. It’s when we are ready for whatever He has in store for us, knowing His plans are not our plans.  And then it happens.

I met Stephen via email (under my dad’s supervision) and we communicated by emailing for about three weeks. At one point Stephen expressed a desire to meet me. I directed him to Dad. This was important to me. This would be the test. If the young man said “why” or “no” that would be a sign he wasn’t the right one for me. If he proceeded, even if he was a bit nervous, well…now we were getting somewhere.

Stephen did email Dad and expressed an interest in meeting me. Unbeknownst to me, Dad and Stephen set up a time to get together first, before we would ever meet. The meeting went well. Dad approved.

November 18th of 2006, we were having a birthday party--mine. Friends, family and Stephen were gathering at Mom and Dad’s home and I was nervous. This would be the first time that Stephen and I would meet in person. Stephen stayed until midnight and we talked and talked while Mom and Dad were nearby within listening range (albeit--groggily). Stephen went home and I wondered if I had just met my husband.

Within a short time, we officially courted. We spent many hours at his or my parents’ house, on the phone or emailing. Rarely were we alone unless traveling in the car from one place to another.

Although Stephen and I were not engaged at this point, we knew we were headed towards marriage. After a discussion about our boundaries (hand holding and kissing), he called me at work one day and said, “Stacie, I have decided we will wait until our wedding day to kiss.” Tears welled up in my eyes. Suddenly, I was someone who was so important, special and treasured in someone else’s eyes. He would sacrifice his desires for me. This was someone special. I had never kissed anyone in my 28 years of life and I wanted to keep my first kiss for the man I was to marry.

On April 1st 2007, my family and Stephen’s family had an Easter Potluck. The evening progressed with food, laughter, fun and an Easter egg hunt (which I found out later was planned to throw me off as to why everyone had cameras and video cameras). Once the egg hunt was over, the children sent off to enjoy their new goodies, the adults were left to play a game. At my turn, I picked up the cards and on each of those cards was my name. The cards said, “Stacie, would you be my wife, the mother of our children, my best friend and share my initials for a lifetime?” I said yes! We hugged while everyone whooped and hollered and congratulated us. It took me weeks, months, to realize that I was getting married--and to someone who truly cherished and loved me.

We chose September 29th 2007 to be our wedding day! And by the way, I did wear Momma’s veil!

The wedding ceremony was beautiful--a one-hour ceremony full of meaning. The music, the special words from my Dad, the symbolic elements we had in the wedding--the lighting of a memory candle, signing our wedding certificate in front of witnesses, presenting our moms with flowers, the seven Jewish blessings to a Bride and Groom that were sung to us in Hebrew and then translated by my Dad (we are not Jewish but it was an element that I wanted), the funny gigantic ring I had the best man hand to Stephen during the ring ceremony—and the kiss. Oh yes, the kiss. It was so worth waiting for. There wasn’t anything better in the world than the knowledge that I had saved that kiss for Stephen. It was a wonderful moment, so sweet and gentle.
Stephen and I have been married for almost a year now. I realize more and more that I married a wonderful, Godly man who loves me unconditionally. I appreciate his qualities. He is very relaxed and laid back which complements me since I am the one who seems to have a bit more red in my hair! No, it hasn’t been easy and there have been some really hard times. But the good outweighs the bad and the rewards of a sanctified marriage are amazing. We look forward to having a family of our very own and being able to raise them with Godly values and morals.

STACIE EARLEY
Spokane Valley, Washington, USA
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Printed in Above Rubies # 75.

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