An Epic First Kiss

The aftermath of Sarah and Andy’s first kiss as a married couple
The aftermath of Sarah and Andy’s first kiss as a married couple
Andy’s and my first kiss as a married couple was epic. Not epic in the way TV shows and movies portray a long anticipated first kiss — enhanced by an awesome soundtrack, good lighting, and sometimes even a tear-jerking voice over (Wonder Years, anyone?). No, Andy’s and my kiss was not that dreamy — but it was epic and unforgettable. We had each spent a good deal of time praying with our vows before our wedding day, focusing on each word and grappling with what it asked of us.

I, Sarah, take you, Andrew, to be my husband. I promise to be true to you in good times and in bad, in sickness and in health. I will love you and honor you all the days of my life. 

These are words that I will undoubtedly have to remind myself of over and over throughout our marriage. And they will surely take on more meaning as we grow together and experience both joys and challenges in our relationship. They’ve already become more meaningful in our first eight weeks of marriage. Most of the time has been pure joy; just last night we reflected on how the summer has felt like an eight-week sleepover with our best friend. But we’ve also navigated the challenges of living together for the first time and have had to confront our own stubbornness about a lot of things. While the very particular joys and challenges of these last eight weeks weren’t known to me on our wedding day, the time I had spent praying with the words in our vows beforehand made those vows tremendously meaningful when I said them to Andy in the presence of our family and friends.

Having a propensity for tears (thanks to my mother’s genes), I wept through the exchange of vows and, as a result, had snot all over my face. So when Andy and I leaned in for our first kiss as a married couple, it was a wet one. As we leaned back, we immediately and simultaneously wiped our mouths, looking like a couple of elementary school kids who had been dared into a kiss and reacted by wiping off their mouths and yelling, “yuck!” Our friends and family erupted into laughter (as did we), which added some great comic relief to what had already been a very tear-filled liturgy.

I still get butterflies in my stomach when I think about the first time Andy kissed me when we were first dating. It was on our third date and I was taken by the bold way he just swooped in, mid-conversation, and went for it. I could tell he was a confident and passionate man from his kiss and I loved that. But when I think about the wet and messy kiss on our wedding day, I find it a much more authentic reflection of love. Because life is messy, and love must enter into that.

We will have days when insecurities overwhelm us and confidence feels out of our reach; we will have days of grumpiness and boredom, when passion is distant. But that’s when love swoops in and becomes real — when we love and honor each other in the darker moments. There is a lot that is over-romanticized about love, and especially about weddings. And so, despite having a beautiful wedding day, it was good to be reminded that we’re in for a very messy ride. And in my opinion, our kiss could rival Kevin and Winnie’s kiss on The Wonder Years (or any other show, for that matter), any day. Because it’s real. And it’s messy.