I’m sure after reading my many Instagram, blog, and Facebook posts, it will come as no surprise just how surreal it feels for me to be writing this right now! For so long, we didn’t know when we would be getting married. We had NO idea what that date would be. It would come up in conversation and Justin would say “someday soon” and when I finally asked for more than that, we settled on “mid-2017” … oh gosh. We started dating in 2009, people. That would mean we’d be together for 8 years before getting married (and living together)! It’s doable… but personally not my idea of fun or an ideal situation!

The day we lost the wedding giveaway, which was devastating enough without thinking of going back to this “mid-2017” plan, I was sitting in bed (crying) when I got the text from my sister that something was happening on Facebook. Someone had started a group called “Let’s Make Megan’s Wedding Dreams Come True” and in it, wedding vendors from around the COUNTRY were stepping forward and saying they’d be willing to donate their services to us to help make our wedding happen. I couldn’t believe it!!! I thought we were back to square one when really, God had SUCH a better plan all along!

I thought winning the wedding was our only shot at avoiding this 2.5 year engagement plan. So when we lost after coming so close to winning, I just sat there and questioned what God’s purpose was. Just why??? Why did we put our story out there and our personal and private matters just to lose? Why did people who didn’t even know Jesus tell me that God was going to make this happen for us, and then it didn’t? What did that say about the Lord? Were we wrong in entering this at all…?

One thing I knew to be true no matter how I felt was that God always has the better plan. The best one, actually. I had handed this giveaway over to Him and prayed that HIS will be done… not our own will, not the voters’ will, just that He would be sovereign in all of this. The wedding giveaway rules changed unexpectedly and then went to an anonymous panel to select the winner and clearly, that’s how God chose to orchestrate the outcome of it all. I fully believe that. If we had won the giveaway… I know that it would have taken such a toll on our relationship. We would have been scrambling to 1) move out and 2) find jobs with high enough and steady enough incomes to support us living on our own here in Northern Virginia, one of the most expensive places to live in the country. We would have been trying to do all of this in the span of 7 months… while Justin was still finishing his undergrad studies in Business as well as his Information Systems major. I get stressed just thinking about it. As much as my flesh wanted to win this giveaway and have what I’ve wanted so badly for so many years SOONER… God’s will won out. And I’m so thankful for that.

When these amazing, kind, and generous wedding vendors started stepping up and offering their services, I suddenly had this beautiful, wonderful, magical moment of realization. “Justin,” I said, “we can’t really tell these people ‘rain check in 2 years!’ when they’re offering to work with us for thousands of dollars less than normal…” and I waited for the lightbulb to go off in his head, too. Even if mid-2017 looked a little more ideal financially and career-wise, we could save money now by starting our wedding planning a little earlier. Of course, it wasn’t about the money to me… I would marry Justin at the courthouse tomorrow if it meant we could go home together and support each other! Unfortunately, life is a little more complicated than that, and our priority right now is finding Justin a job to start next year after he’s graduated so that we can pay rent for a little one-bedroom (maybe even a studio!) apartment and start our life together. Sure, we could have waited another year… saved up money by living at home… but in the grand scheme of things, what really is the point? Putting ourselves through more time of waiting, temptation, having more time to avoid responsibility… would a year really make all that much of a difference, especially in light of the wedding discounts we were now being offered?!

My answer was no. And Justin agreed. I fully believed that God was setting in motion the start of our wedding planning and our journey to marriage and that now was the time. So we Skyped with our amazing wedding planner Lacoya just one week after the giveaway ended and we set a date to start looking at venues. And when we saw the one, we knew. We just knew that was where we were meant to get married and spend the day celebrating with our family and friends. I felt so good walking around the venue grounds, visiting with the owners, and picturing me getting into my dress in the bridal suite and walking out to meet Justin under the willow trees for our first look. It all felt so right… and after confirming the details with Lacoya, the venue, and our family members… it was official…..

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 We will be getting married at Big Spring Farm NEXT MAY!!!!!!

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I can’t put into words how happy I am! I keep telling people that it feels like I’m walking on air every day… and even when we fight, there’s still such a sweetness. A commitment that comes from knowing that this is for LIFE… so we need to respect and treat and love each other like we’re going to be spending the next 70 years together :) It’s such a beautiful thing to be engaged, and I can’t believe we have just one more year of it before we become husband and wife!!! I am SO excited… Big Spring is so beautiful and I can’t wait to share more about our decision to get married there! We can’t WAIT for next May!!! It feels far away but so close at the same time! Ahhh! We met Brandilynn Aines last week for our Save the Date photo shoot and although we’re saving those pictures for our guests as well as our exact date, those two things will be on the blog as soon as our guests have seen them! :) Woo hoo!!! I can’t wait to share these images… I cried when Brandi sent me the gallery. And that’s never happened before! Justin, I can’t believe this is our real life! And that this time next year, we’ll be getting MARRIED!!! I’m so ready for this lifelong adventure with you!! I love you… and look how much the Lord has provided for us! His faithfulness is so good!!! To all of the vendors that will be a part of our wedding day, thank you on an entirely new level of gratitude. We love you all so much. Let the countdown BEGIN!!! 

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