(Translated from Braille)
Hailey Kay Rowden,
Not for long,
Because our love for each other is strong,
You’ll change your last name to that of mine,
And so it will remain for the end of time.
But because this marriage is blessed from Heaven above,
Time has no end in this everlasting love.
Before we can seal the deal with a kiss,
Before this audience I promise you this.
I promise to love you in sickness and in health,
I promise to love you in poverty and in wealth.
I promise that no other will take your place,
And when I lie down to sleep, it is you I will embrace.
I vow to be a good father for the next generation,
Should they come from us, or across the nation.
I’ll try to keep my problems from marring our affection,
And I’ll accept your help to get back in the right direction.
Whether I run into a figurative wall,
Or my favorite team should fumble the ball,
I promise to always put you first,
For losing you would be the absolute worst.
No matter the amount of effort it takes,
I’ll try to learn from all my mistakes.
Although there are many challenges in life,
We will work through them as husband and wife.
Hailey Kay Rowden,
I love you lots,
And with our promises,
we tie the knots,
For as it states in this writing of dots,
Your name will soon be Hailey Kay Potts.
Falling in love with you has been the greatest adventure.
It began when I’d least expected it and at what seemed like a most inopportune time, but I realize it wasn’t my timing, it was God’s.
I knew that you were adorable, witty, and obnoxiously yourself, but in searching your heart, you revealed your tenderness, humility, honesty, and compassion — and it was that which made me love you. That which cannot be seen, cannot be heard, but can only be expressed through quiet actions and even quieter moments of silence.
In the words of Jane Eyre, “He made me love him without looking at me.”
Lord knows I’m not one for princess stories but I will admit that while you aren’t my fairytale ending, you are my fairytale beginning. For what’s a fairytale without tribulation, without a fire-breathing dragon? A fairytale is the pursuit of happiness despite whatever challenges and maintaining the hope of a happily-ever after — that all is for the best.
Just in my two short years of adulthood, life been nothing but a fire breathing dragon and I don’t expect you to be my knight in shining armor because I wouldn’t trust you to wield a sword to save my life. But I do trust you to be with me through the depths of sorrow and stress and in the heights of joy and triumph as we face our dragons together. I trust you to love me when I’m hangry, to have patience when I’m figuring out what to wear, and I know you will love me for a lifetime.
Because of this, I commit my whole self to you in the fullness of joy, God’s grace, and marriage.
As your wife, I promise to be faithful and honest with you in my actions, speech, and thoughts. It might take me awhile to find the right words to express my feelings, but I promise to always tell you when something is wrong.
I promise to love you within and without regards to your lack of optic nerves.
Call me old-fashioned, but I promise to treat you like the man you are and not take advantage of you. I promise I’ll tell you when we’re driving past a Burgerville, but I also promise to always offer my financial opinion regarding dinner.
I promise to pursue you; your goals, your dreams, your passions, your Seahawks, and your heart. I promise to make your ambitions my own.
I promise to give you a family and to raise up our children to honor the Lord. When the time comes, I promise to remind you that it’s okay if we’re not perfect parents; that God calls us to be loving, not perfect.
I promise to stop for your hugs when I’m racing out the door and to kiss you longer than a peck.
As time really is the infinite jest, I promise to give you all of it. For any time spent with you is a moment of infinity that shouldn’t be squandered.
I promise to remember that it is only because of Christ that we love. I promise to seek Him and keep Him as the cornerstone of our marriage.
I will fervently pray with you and for you.
I will comfort you and hold you not only when you need it, but especially then.
I will cherish our union above all else and I will love you. I will detach love from feeling: I will separate the meaning of that word from the butterflies I feel, and the warmth that I feel, and the happiness I feel when I am with you.
For today, I choose love as the constant choice to love you. To love you more than I love my pride, my preferences, and my image.
Today, I give you my hand in marriage and step forward as your best friend, biggest fan, and as your wife.
3 • 20 • 16
3 Sentence Love Story
They met at the Arlene Schnitzer concert hall at a time when she was too shy to shake his hand. Years later, he fell in love with her by the sound of her voice and the skip in her step and she loved his integrity and kindheartedness. After outdoor adventuring, reading books by the fire, and making music together, he asked her to marry him and, in spite of their youth, they wrapped ourselves in vows before the Lord only 5 months later on March 20th, 2016.