If I Knew Then

I’m going to take a quick break from the wedding-planning posts before I go any further, because I have a little confession to make. I think it is best to just get it out and over with now so that things make sense later on. But this is long and not very pretty picture-wise, so I promise I won’t be offended at all if you just skip over it and wait for the wedding stuff!

So, confession: I was engaged before, once, to my college boyfriend. We were engaged for 11 months, and I met Mr. Milk Cow a little under four months after my ex-fiance ended our relationship. We were planning on a long engagement, but had started doing some early research—we basically had our photographer, our DJ, and our venue picked out. So I’m no stranger to planning weddings!

Hillendale Country Club was our top choice - it is gorgeous in the fall. Image by Jackson Photography.

Hillendale Country Club was our top choice—it is gorgeous in the fall. / Image by Jackson Photography

While we were planning, almost every decision I made was based on what someone else wanted—the wedding my parents expected, the huge bridal party my ex wanted, and the long guest list everyone but me thought was in the budget.

Nothing against huge bridal parties, of course.. I just don't have that many close friends!! Photo by Kelly Maughan Photography.

Nothing against huge bridal parties, of course…I just don’t have that many close friends! / Photo by Kelly Maughan Photography

Now, a few years out from that relationship, my life is completely different. The girl I was when I was with my ex is completely gone. Right after our breakup, I went through some big changes and figured out what I truly wanted out of life. I lost some friends along the way and changed jobs twice. Most importantly, I really know who I am and what I want now. All of this plays into planning for our wedding and our marriage so much.

Going through the experience of being engaged and having all these life plans and then watching them disappear has made me appreciate everything in my life so much more, but especially my relationship with Mr. Milk Cow. He is the perfect partner to the person I am today, and I am confident that we will keep growing and changing and figuring out how to keep connecting with each other. I can’t imagine marrying anyone but him.

Maybe it's because I can't imagine anyone else having the patience (and long enough arms) to handle the selfies I am constantly wanting to take? Photo is personal.

Maybe it’s because I can’t imagine anyone else having the patience (and long enough arms) to handle the selfies I am constantly wanting to take? / Photo is personal.

My appreciation of Mr. Milk Cow and our relationship is very clear to me in our wedding planning. I still listen to others’ opinions, but at the end of the day, we make our decisions together—just the two of us. We want a day that reflects who we are and our relationship, and no one else can decide that like we can. Our guest list will be a mix of close family and friends because I want people there who will celebrate with us on our wedding day, and then hopefully still be there to support us when times get rough a year or 10 years down the road.

I am constantly aware of what our wedding day will be—a time to celebrate our relationship, our commitment to each other, and the joy we have found and created in one another. But it isn’t the most important thing, so I’m trying my best to not let the planning of one day take over my life too much. Because at the end of that one day, Mr. Milk Cow will be by my side whether all the details are perfect or not.

See? So excited!! Photo by Marlayna Photography.

Pure happiness! / Photo by Marlayna Photography

But let’s be serious—wouldn’t it be nice to get married to my best friend on a day when all the details I’ve spent months planning fall perfectly into place?! A girl can dream!

Have you been engaged or married before? What did you learn from before that you’re using in your current relationship?


Mrs. Milk Cow

August 10
Columbia, MD
Wedding Date:
July 2014

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  1. Member
    wellies 1425 posts, Bumble bee @ 9:48 am

    Both Mr. W and I agree we had to go through difficult times in life to find each other at the right time; if we had met any earlier, our relationship might not have worked out. I’m glad you met Mr. Milk Cow and can have the wedding you always wanted! :)

  2. Member
    msfilly 827 posts, Busy bee @ 11:36 am

    See, everything happens for a reason! Thanks for sharing your story. I’m so happy it’s all working out for you.

  3. Member
    pyramid 95 posts, Worker bee @ 1:25 pm

    This was really insightful, I’m glad that you’re so happy now! That definitely puts things in perspective of what matters and what doesn’t.
    And I lol’d at the selfie comment :)

  4. Member
    phonebooth 57 posts, Worker bee @ 5:07 pm

    Thanks for being so honest and open :) I have a friend who was engaged before and I’ll tell you the same thing that I told her: You probably thought you loved people before you found Mr. Milk Cow, you may have even told them that you loved them. But all that matters in the end is that your heart and soul tell you that Mr. Milk Cow is really the one that defines love.

  5. Member
    kaw2be 827 posts, Busy bee @ 5:37 pm

    I was engaged previously, also to my college boyfriend. 7 months out I realized I SO wasn’t ready for marriage and definitely would never be really for marriage with HIM. I met my now fiance about 3 months after my last relationship ended and meeting him made it totally clear what I wanted out of my life and I wanted to do it all with him.

  6. Member
    Mrs. Milk Cow 197 posts, Blushing bee @ 6:25 pm

    @Miss Phone Booth: That is such a good way to put it – I love it!

    @kaw2be: I’m glad you realized before you got married and found someone who made everything clear for you! :)

    @Miss Pyramid: Thank you! The new perspective definitely helps.

    @Miss Filly: Thanks!!

    @Miss Wellies: Thanks! It is crazy how life changes so quickly.

  7. Member
    scarlet_letter 369 posts, Helper bee @ 8:32 am

    I was actually engaged twice before. Both to people I’d dated for several years. I met Mr. SL about 4 weeks after the second engagement ended (about 11 days after it began, we both realized it was not what we wanted!)
    I was not LOOKING for Mr. SL but we found each other, anyways. 3 years later (almost to the day) and we’ve been married twice! We got legalled October of 2012 and our wedding was 6 weeks ago. I learned many things about myself from my past relationships, and Mr. SL had been divorced for about ten years when we met but hadn’t been searching for a life-partner at that point.
    Isn’t it crazy how that all works out…..

    BTW: You and Mr. Milk Cow are ADORABLE.

  8. Member
    Mrs. Milk Cow 197 posts, Blushing bee @ 10:03 am

    @scarlet_letter: Glad I’m not alone and I’m so glad you found Mr. SL and you guys are happy :) It is so amazing how things change and fall into place so unexpectedly. And thank you!

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