The go-to question for me from many these days is "So, how is wedding planning going?!"
My usual response is a quick smile and an "Oh pretty good! Thanks!"
And it is. In so many words.
But the question that few ask but seems much more pertinent is, "So, how is engagement going?!"
And it's not that my response would be much different (at least, not if you want the short version) and I'm not generally one to write anything extremely personal for the viewing public, especially since Adam isn't giving this a read-through before I hit "Publish" (hey, Adam! Just, you know, sharing a little of our personal life with the Internet! No worries!).
But it's just that as soon--and actually, even before--we were engaged, several married friends of ours advised us that engagement is just the absolute hardest, most intense time.
And after walking through the engagement season with several of my very best friends in the past few years, I saw firsthand how very emotional and stressful it seemed from the outside.
(So much so that literally the day after I had this sparkling ring on my finger, I turned to Adam and in all my graceful, romantic brilliance said point-blank, "I'm pretty sure we'll be fighting a lot in these next few months. Just so you know.")
Still, I didn't really know what to expect.
Yesterday, someone asked me to describe my engagement experience and it got me thinking.
And the only way I could even attempt to explain this season for me is this (and please bear with me because I am generally not a visual thinker so this is pretty much completely out of my element):
Picture the spectrum of colors (we're talking the biggest box of Crayolas here, not just ROYGBIV).
Now imagine each color is an emotion.
For most seasons of my life, I could generally categorize my experience by picking out a few colors that are characteristic of that time. Of course, there is always a mix of some sort, but usually there are a few bold strokes of color that stick out.
The bizarre thing about this particular time--of my life, mind you, so please don't hear this as a universal statement because I am the first to admit I am far from Completely Normal...and Adam, if you are still reading, this is where you are free to jump in and DISAGREE! Ahem.--as I was saying, the bizarre thing about this season of my life is that it's so chalk-full of emotions that it is hard to begin to even separate them.
Instead, it just seems like one big multicolored blur.
And not just a stream of colors, but colors on steroids. Colors so plumped up with vibrancy and dripping with saturation that I am swimming in what can only be describe as a kaleidoscope of emotion--
Cornflower Blue wistfulness and Celery Green newness and Blushing Pink excitement and Brick Red frustration and Magenta heartbeats and Burnt Orange pain and Mac 'n' Cheese playfulness and plain Gray weariness and Seafoam dreams and Eggplant anxiety and Cocoa hope...
And they're squeeeeeeezed together and swirled around and smooshed into this very tiny speck of time that leaves me quite breathless, really.
And at the end of the day, I sink into the couch and wiggle my slippered toes and grab the hand I need to survive--the one that keeps me going, the one that pushes me along, the one that reaches out for me, too, because man-oh-man, we need each other in such a rich time of life.
And it's hard. And it's wonderful. And it's unlike anything we've ever experienced before.
And wow, is it worth it.