Today is our 5 year anniversary! I am currently sitting in a chair with swollen feet up and my hospital bag finally completely packed, this baby girl is due to arrive at any moment. I thank God every day for these miracles in my life. Marriage has been the most challenging yet fulfilling journey of my entire life. So cliche, but so true. I went in clueless and blind, and come out everyday realizing how much the act of surrender to someone else challenges our selfishness and ego unlike any other experience. I have a man who is willing to go to the dark places with me,and then work to get us closer to the light everyday. It’s the hardest work I’ve ever done but incredibly authentic. I couldn’t have asked for a better partner to be a witness to my life. We are entering into a still season, we haven’t even been in the same house together for 4 weeks since December of 2012! We are so lucky to get to live our dreams and do what we love musically, but between my tour schedule and the Kings of Leon tour schedule we have been exhausted in every way for much too long. I am so thrilled to have a fall at home with my husband and the new addition that God is giving to us.
Here are some of my favorite pictures from that very special day 5 years ago. I wore Vera Wang, Chris wore John Varvatos. We married in the countryside of Nashville at Cedarwood plantation, with old wood swings littering the stunning property. I brought in the old church benches that used to sit at the famed Ryman Auditorium, and we were blessed with one of the most beautiful days of 2009. Chris’s grandmother (the beautiful lady in the purple suit below) said a prayer over us that is still one of the most prized moments of my life. I had a close friend read “The Invitation”, which is one of the most beautiful poems ever written and my personal guidebook for the partner I was looking for. I think every man and woman should read it (see below the pictures) before committing their life to another, and ask these hard questions. These pictures bring back all of the joy shared with my love, friends and family. Hope you enjoy…
It doesn’t interest me what you do for a living. I want to know what you ache for and if you dare to dream of meeting your heart’s longing.
It doesn’t interest me how old you are. I want to know if you will risk looking like a fool for love, for your dream, for the adventure of being alive.
It doesn’t interest me what planets are squaring your moon. I want to know if you have touched the centre of your own sorrow, if you have been opened by life’s betrayals or have become shrivelled and closed from fear of further pain.
I want to know if you can sit with pain, mine or your own, without moving to hide it, or fade it, or fix it.
I want to know if you can be with joy, mine or your own; if you can dance with wildness and let the ecstasy fill you to the tips of your fingers and toes without cautioning us to be careful, be realistic, remember the limitations of being human.
It doesn’t interest me if the story you are telling me is true. I want to know if you can disappoint another to be true to yourself. If you can bear the accusation of betrayal and not betray your own soul. If you can be faithless and therefore trustworthy.
I want to know if you can see Beauty even when it is not pretty every day. And if you can source your own life from its presence.
I want to know if you can live with failure, yours and mine, and still stand at the edge of the lake and shout to the silver of the full moon, ‘Yes.’
It doesn’t interest me to know where you live or how much money you have. I want to know if you can get up after the night of grief and despair, weary and bruised to the bone and do what needs to be done to feed the children.
It doesn’t interest me who you know or how you came to be here. I want to know if you will stand in the centre of the fire with me and not shrink back.
It doesn’t interest me where or what or with whom you have studied. I want to know what sustains you from the inside when all else falls away.
I want to know if you can be alone with yourself and if you truly like the company you keep in the empty moments.