Sunday, January 06, 2008

I's married now. I said, I's married now...

To quote Shug Avery from The Color Purple, "I's married now!".

Yes, I took my happy self, as my people say, and went to Cameroon and got married. It was an interesting, exciting, unique, challenging, exhilarating and amazing experience. I am not even sure where to begin or what to say. I was "stingy with the details" leading up the wedding, and so most of you had an idea that I was getting married, but little else. So, here are the details.

On December 31, 2007 in Kumba, Cameroon, I became Mrs. B. We made our vows, in the sight of God and man, exchanged rings and sealed it with a kiss (or two). The entire town was there to celebrate, and sing, and my mum provided support and love for the blushing bride. It was wonderful! I will send out pictures via e-mail to all of you in a few weeks, so make sure that I have your e-mail address.

So, to answer the frequently asked questions...

1) Why the secrecy/rush?

There wasn't a rush, we've been planning this for months. The secrecy was because a) I didn't want people to feel bad about not being able to come, b) although we were planning for months, because of timing and visas and money, things didn't come together until the very end, and I didn't want to have to keep changing information or giving updates and, c) I am my mothers child (if you know my mum, you know what that means, if you don't, then don't worry about it).

2) Why did you get married in AFRICA?
Wanderlust baby! That and getting a fiance visa to the US quite complicated. Not a process I wanted to go through. Trust me, trying to co-ordinate a wedding when you live in China, your parents are in America, his parents are in Cameroon and you both have close family members in Europe is not easy. It would have taken years, and most of you know that I was NEVER a fan of long engagements. We considered all of the other possible options, destination weddings, waiting a year or two, etc. and this was the decision we made.

3) What is Cameroon like?
National Geographic. Beautiful. Seriously. You will have to see the pictures.

4) What was the wedding like? Did you have a traditional ceremony, a church wedding, what?
We had a civil ceremony at the council house. We wore traditional attire for the ceremony, and western attire for the reception. Although the ceremony was a civil ceremony, we said the traditional church vows (love, cherish, have, hold, rich, poor, sick, health till death us do part) and there was a scripture reading at the end. But there was no wedding march, altar, or anything like that. We signed the marriage certificate, and we were officially husband and wife.
Afterwards, there was lots of singing and jubilant calls from the women, which was great. Getting married is truly a community event, and a time for everyone to celebrate.

5) May I send a gift?
Thanks! Please be mindful that at some point, I will have to pack everything I own into two suitcases. I will be visiting the States this summer, and it might be easier for you to hold on to the gift(s) until then, or mail them to me at my mums address in FL (if you have it). It will also be easier, cheaper, and I won't have to worry about paying duty or potential customs issues. If you would still like to send a gift, e-mail me and I will send you my address.

6) Wait, weddings, gifts...I am WAY behind. How did he propose?
There wasn't a conventional "proposal", very indicative of his personality (and mine) and our relationship. This is what happened. He said to me one day, in a very serious voice. "L, I spoke to my father today". "Ok" I responded, expecting something grave. "I informed him of my intention to marry you. He agrees and thinks it is the right decision. So, I would like to get married in the next few months." There it was. I'm not a big one for surprises, so I am glad he didn't try. At the time, I just thought it was so funny, esp. because he was so serious that I thought he was going to tell me that someone was in the hospital and he had to go home! (I'm glad that the news wasn't grave.) I was laughing really hard though, and it took about 5 minutes for me to compose myself. He, however, was not laughing, and could not understand what I thought was so funny. So then I had to calm down and ask him if was asking me to marry him. He said, very nervously "What, you don't want to marry me?" At which point I decided to relieve him of his angst, and told him that I would love to marry him.

Although I would have loved for most of you to be there to celebrate with me, at the end of the day it is the marriage, and not the wedding, that is most important. I will be sure to send pictures, and diligently answer all of your questions. I know a few of you are a little upset with me, but that is ok, love heals all wounds. It was no easier for me than it was was you. Trust me. I would like to thank all of you that prayed for me, and celebrated with me across oceans and continents and multiple time zones. I would like to thank my siblings especially, my favorite uncle, my grandmothers, and closest friends, for their strength and perseverance, and for their presence in spirit. I would be lost without you.

And yes, we're gonna have a party when I come home, so get ready! Oh, and HAPPY NEW YEAR!

1 comment:

Memeeflye said...

Congratulations Sis! Mrs. B. Work at it. It's yours now. It is what you make it.