Are You Nervous Yet?

I was forced to watch an episode of Sex and the City once. It was traumatic, but the payoff was mildly interesting. Sara Jessica Parker realized that there are just always going to be certain questions you get during different phases of your love life.

When you are single: So are you dating anyone?
When you are dating someone: So is it serious?
When you are dating someone seriously: So when’s the wedding?
When you are married: When are you guys going to have kids?

And one I was unaware of until just recently…….

When you are engaged: Are you nervous yet?

It’s a rite of passage I’ve participated in many times. Give the nearly married guy lots of grief about the new ball and chain, etc…. (I even attended a bachelor party where the guest of honor was forced to wear a ball and chain made from a bowling ball, some chain, and a padlock.) My brother told me that as he was standing at the altar watching his bride come down the aisle the best man leaned over and said “It’s not too late to run for it.” (This is even better when you find out that his best man was our father.)

But I’ve never experienced it from the other side before. The last few weeks before the wedding all my guy friends and family, and even several guys in the office that I barely know, delighted in giving me a hard time about the upcoming nuptials. I got advice ranging from “Run for it now!” to “Enjoy your last days of freedom.” One woman said to me “At least you’ll have someone to cook for you and do your laundry.”

By far the thing I heard the most though was, “Are you nervous yet?”. Everyone from Mrs. W’s former fifth grade teacher to my own mother asked me that. Just the annoyance itself was probably enough to keep me from actually getting nervous until right before the wedding.

I’ve speculated a lot on why everyone seemed to take such glee in trying to make me nervous and uncomfortable. The main reason I think is just your usual hazing, but you’d think that people that have been through it would be more understanding about the stress of it all. I think those folks were mostly motivated by the idea of feeling more knowledgeable and experienced than I was. I’ve noticed that tendency in myself. On our honeymoon I had a lot of fun watching other people get married and disparaging them as newlyweds when I had only been married for 3 days.

People are funny. Mrs. W says she didn’t really have that problem. I blame her femininity. I give it another month before I hear our first "So when are you going to have kids?".


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