Thursday, March 17


Blair proposed to me at sunrise on November 10, 2007. It was the weekend of my 24th birthday, and he had surprised me with a trip to the Schmidt's for the "girlfriend weekend" and going to an apple orchard. I thought that he would propose at the orchard, so when he came into my room at 5:45am saying, "Sweetheart! Come watch the sunrise with me! I have coffee and a blanket..." I definitely did not see a proposal coming. I scrambled into a pair of jeans and sweater, threw my hair into a clip, and managed to slip in contacts before heading out into the freezing Wisconsin air. We sat on a swing, talking about who knows what and sipping scalding hot coffee before he said the words that changed everything: "I want today to mark the beginning of our new life together. Erin, will you marry me?" (at least, i think that's how it went; i'm pretty sure shock set in and i might've screamed? i did communicate "yes" in some form or fashion.)

He slipped this amazing ring on my finger - a design that i had seen and liked, but he went above and beyond the one i saw and had a jeweler custom make this ring. A few minutes later, i saw camera flashes behind me and looked back to see Miss Laurie and Maggie grinning and snapping pictures. (It's then that i regretted my clothing and hair style choice for the morning.)

We were married five months later, on April 18, 2008. We both had our wedding rings made by the same jeweler who made my engagement ring. Blair's ring is a solid white gold with my name, Erin Leigh, engraved on the top. He told me that he wanted the world to know who he was spending the rest of his life with. My wedding band is a simple rope design, with the words "To Be Holy" engraved on the inside. I wanted to remind myself that marriage was more than the sum of dreams and pursuit of happiness - it was a reverent call to be holy, to be made more and more into the likeness of Christ, who loves us and gave himself for us. I am called to follow the leading of Jesus and serve Blair sacrificially, with joy.

About halfway through my pregnancy, I had to remove the rings. I tell you, it was a sad day when pregnancy fat worked it's way into my fingertips. After I had Gwen, I had hoped that the swelling would go down and I could put on my rings. After three months, I had to face the hard facts: it was not just water retention; my fingers were permanently fatter than before. I took them to get resized, and I finally picked them up today.

I've missed my rings. I forgot how pretty they really are. I have definitely missed the "I'm taken" signal they give off... not that I've been hit on or admired, by any stretch. But it just makes me feel good to know that if I was at any point, I could flash my ring finger as if to say, "That's right, buddy. Taken."

On the drive home, I reflected on what my rings mean - the single token that symbolizes my commitment to love, serve, cherish, admire, uphold, protect, and sacrificially love my spouse. I wish I could remember our vows that we made on April 18, 2008. I don't, and for some very annoying reason, I cannot seem to find the actual vows wherever they are lost in my house. But this I know - what we vowed that day has been lived out for every second of every minute of the last 2 years and 11 months, to the day. Imperfectly, yes. But I love him more today than I thought possible 3 years ago. And I've grown in my comprehension of the characteristics of Love. By the grace of God, our covenant of 2 years and 11 months stands -- without amendments, additions, or excuses.

Reflecting on my wedding day with Blair and our relationship caused me to think about Christ and His bride, the Church. And I created "vows" for Jesus, and what I believe He says to me:

"I will always protect you. I will serve you. I give my life for you. I will always forgive you. I will never hold on to anger with you. I will communicate with you. I will respond when you call. I will provide for you. I will comfort you. I will counsel you. I will create beauty in you. I will lead you. I will never fail you. Even when you fail me, hate me, question me, despise me, ignore me, hurt me - I will never leave you. I will never give up. Nothing can take you away from me. I will love you, unendingly."

Thank You for loving me incomprehensibly, for pursuing me when I was dead to you, pushing you away, rejecting and despising you. Thank you for covenanting with me, accomplishing what I could never do and creating a union that will never fade or be corrupted. 


  1. I think I have those photos somewhere. Thanks for sharing and giving a picture of how your relationship has developed.
    Your two lives together have been a blessing to me and mom.
    I love you!

  2. i still remember standing in the parking lot next to the playground in winnetka. i remember you telling me that you are going to marry blair. i remembering thinking "woah, buddy. slow are crazy to go so fast"!!! i am delighted to say that i was so wrong and you were so right. love is a choice - something that grows if you tend it. it's been a beautiful thing to watch your and blair's love become firmly established. i'm so glad that you didn't listen to me :)

  3. Love your story! When we were talking about ours the other day, I think I forgot to mention that I had no idea that he'd propose when he did. I was wearing grungy clothes and a trucker hat that I grabbed out of the car. I had to keep the hat on for all of the pics b/c after wearing it for a little while, I had horrible hat hair:) Just have to laugh looking back at those pics. I really thought we were going to climb a rock.

  4. Um, wow! That was lovely. And I discovered something, nothing that will change the world, but something that made me smile. I have always loved my name and my middle name. And very few women have the same middle name and spell it like I do. But you do...Erin Leigh....and that made me smile today.
    Kristin Leigh Brown Smith
    Oh, the vows you wrote from Christ's view were lovely and helpful to me...thanks...

  5. you vows from Jesus are beautiful and make me cry. i want to post them somewhere that i can read them daily. thanks.