October 5, 2014

One’s Company: Two’s a Crowd

One from the “It’s So Obvious Why Isn’t Everyone Doing It?” catalogue:

London photographer Grace Gelder recently got married – to herself.  You can read all about it in the UK’s Guardian newspaper.  And she couldn’t be happier.


Whilst a few friends voiced reservations (“Are you really your type?”, “Couldn’t you just cohabit for a bit longer?”, “Call the PET team”) most of them came around to the idea.  And make no mistake, Grace wasn’t going in to marriage with her eyes shut.  She knew what she was in for:

“Obviously, if you’ve just announced you’re marrying yourself, it is plainly a statement of self-love, and I was under no illusion how self-indulgent that might appear. But I was completely comfortable with my motivations.”

And she got the pre-marriage couples’ counselling for half price too. Score!

Grace seems like an independent (obviously) and spirited young woman who has made a name for herself as a daring  photographer (hence the lack of a link to her site), but the marriage proposal was making her nervous nonetheless.

But then, in February this year, with only a month to go before the wedding, doubts began to creep in. I found myself asking, why was I really doing this? Was it just some vainglorious stunt?

Push those negative thoughts deep down Grace.  You know you really love you.

The day itself turned out brilliantly as all eyes focused on Grace. In fact Grace took Grace’s breath away:

The day was obviously centred on me, the final event being a mirror for me to kiss, but it also felt like I was sharing something very special with my friends, giving everyone an opportunity to reflect on their own ideas of love and commitment.

And since self-reflection was the order of the day:

Just sitting there in the room and thinking, “Wow, all these people have come all this way today to celebrate me marrying myself!” was very humbling.

Or very risible.

Anyway, all jokes aside (I give it a year), there is something brave about Grace’s actions.  She’s simply voicing what many people are too scared to voice publicly, that even in marriage it really is all about them. THEIR fulfilment, THEIR satisfaction, THEIR goals and dreams.  And if you can find someone to coincide with all of yours, then marry them.  And if not, then marry yourself.

The great irony of course is that Grace’s search for fulfilment that has seen her take the bold, but obvious step, to marry herself, will, ultimately, leave her bereft of the one virtue she truly needs – grace.  Grace will be lost in a fruitless search for grace.

Having said all that, I spy rocky times ahead in the form of a possible interloper:

Just because I married myself, it doesn’t mean that I’m not open to the idea of sharing a wedding with someone else one day.

Now I give THAT six months.









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There is no guarantee that Jesus will return in our desired timeframe. Yet we have no reason to be anxious, because even if the timeframe is not guaranteed, the outcome is! We don’t have to waste energy being anxious; we can put it to better use.

Stephen McAlpine – futureproof

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