I am now going to have to admit that I was wrong about this weekend. It turned out to be about a million times better than expected. Honestly, I think something like this should be required by law to get married! haha! I thought it would going to be extremely rooted in religion and as it turns out, it was really less about that than anything else. We covered it all...kids, fighting, forgiving, sex, communication, finances, values, etc... The format was mainly: Presentation by leaders (two couples), separate and write on the topic, and then get together with your fiance and trade books, read and discuss. There is no group sharing or anyone telling you what is right and wrong. It really is just about you and your future spouse. Ok, there is the good. I can't leave out a few items that were less than appealing:
- The rooming situation. We checked in and got our roommates. Yes, roommates. A complete stranger that we were placed in a room the size of a shoe box with.
- The beds. Our linens were laid out on our beds for us to make. It was a little like the military or maybe even prison. The name of the retreat facility was stamped on our sheets and towels (which I am not even sure count as a towel-more like a very thin washcloth).
- The hours. We checked in at 7:30 on Friday night and this deal was supposed to go on until 4pm on Sunday. Luckily Scott had a flight out on Sunday morning so we got excused at 10:15pm on Saturday (note we started at 8am that morning).
- We had to miss ALL of the Cardinals/Giants series to be there.
- I smuggled a bottle of wine in in my luggage. We had quite the covert operation of drinking our red wine out of coffee cups going on Friday night.
- I have a bit of a syndrome. Awkward silence and I don't get along. From the moment we arrived at our first presentation Scott took to calling me Monica (from Friends in the episode where they go to cooking school and she knows all of the answers and is eager to answer). This habit continued throughout the weekend. There was one group activity where people put questions in a box to be discussed amongst the group. I decided to participate in each and every one. Scott took to making fun of me and made the entire group laugh on more than one occasion at my expense (see how much we learned)!
- Saturday we had an hour and half break...so while others strolled the grounds, we strolled to the bar. Let me just say that no, we are not alcoholics, by this point we had been communicating for 8 hours with 4+ more to go. Plus, it was gorgeous outside so we just had one beer at a local bar.
- After all of this sneaking around, turns out they had wine at dinner on Saturday night. You have never seen 18 couples so excited! I am pretty sure the priest was a little tipsy for our next activity.
- I met a fellow St.Louisan. Of course, I found out where he went to high school-SLUH. Small world!
I leave you with the slogan of the SFCEE: A wedding is a day, a marriage is a lifetime. (No, this was not news to me...just a nice little line to pass along)