Heart Led Health by Coach Donna
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Friday / October 14 / 2011

4 lessons you need for the promise of “I Do”

Skip-n-Donna say, "I Do" (October 3, 1993)
Skip-n-Donna say, “I Do” (October 3, 1993)

To fully embrace “I do”, you must consider the promise long before the wedding bells have rung and long after. Otherwise, they’re just sweet words spoken while wearing expensive attire, and you never reach beyond embossed invitations and heavy hors d’oeuvres.

Autumn has arrived and with it, the changing of leaves – oh, and nuptials. Lots and lots of nuptials. Between performing them, performing at them, and attending them, Skip-n-I have old, new, borrowed, and blue coming out of our ears.

I love going to weddings. I love the dresses. I love the colors. I love the flowers and fancy hair. But most of all, I love watching two soul mates unite, promise themselves to each other, and mean forever when they say, “I do”.

Skip-n-Donna's vow renewal (October 7, 2006) From L-to-R: Mark Racette, Elaine & Don Racette, Debbie Barcomb, Donna-n-Skip Smaldone, Barb Robillard, Grant Smaldone

Skip-n-Donna's vow renewal (October 7, 2006) From L-to-R: Mark Racette (Donna's brother), Elaine & Don Racette (Donna's parents), Debbie Barcomb (Donna's sister), Donna-n-Skip Smaldone, Barb Robillard (Skip's sister), Grant Smaldone (our son)

Skip-n-I vowed forever love 18 years ago – and then again five years ago when we renewed our “I do”s.

I recognize Skip-n-I live out our love more fully than most. We vow forever love every day of our marriage and it’s not something we take for granted. Our friend Tommy Spaulding says we’re in the “10% Club” (the 10% of couples who are actually still head-over-heels in love).

As we’ve engaged in conversations and cocktails these past few months with friends and family pledging, “I do”, I’ve felt a warmth in my heart as I’ve recognized two best friends joining souls for a lifetime. Love like that shared by Jeff-n-Cassie.

Conversely, I’ve felt a pit in my stomach as I’ve watched others couples wed with much fret, worry, and stress over the fine details of their wedding, giving no mind to the real heart of the matter – their marriage.

Saying, “I do” is a vow, a pledge, a promise. It’s not to be taken lightly.


(1) Discover your “me” before you join to a “we”

You have to have something for yourself first before you can share it with someone else.

(2) You can’t outdream God
No matter how vibrantly you dream, God’s tie-die is always more vibrant. Let Him paint your tapestry.

(3) Do NOT settle
Don’t settle for someone simply to fill a void. The shame is not just in the settling or the likelihood of heartbreak, but in the choice you’ve made to rob yourself of the opportunity to meet someone else.

(4) Be sure to marry your best friend
Sex is fun, sex is amazing, and sexual attraction is a must for the one you’ll marry – “YES” on all counts. But let’s face it, you must have more. Ensure you don’t only lust for your love, but you actually like him as well. Marry the one you want to share life with.

Consider the captivated look on a groom’s face when the love of his life first enters his vision on his wedding day. Consider the gaze that captivates lovers as they nervously fidget, repeating forever vows of “I do”.

Seek that.

If you’re more excited about the wedding than the marriage, please have a princess tea party instead.



2 responses to “4 lessons you need for the promise of “I Do””

  1. Rick says:

    Wonderful piece, Donna.
    I know you mentioned you wanted to write on this subject, and, not only did I think it was a good idea, but also you’ve come up with one great point after another.
    This post should be required reading for anyone getting married.
    Nicely done. You should be very proud of your work here, both writing and helping to set well-meaning people straight.
    (By the way, Chris and I aren’t officially married, but we consider ourselves wedded. I marked our scores against everything you wrote here, and we pass. Who knows? Maybe we’ll get married on June 13 next year, our twentieth anniversary together.)

    • Donna Smaldone says:

      Thank you so much, Rick! I have a BIG smile on my face picturing you-n-Chris saying, “I Do”. What a glorious celebration it would be. And what a great reason for Skip-n-I to travel to Metro Vancouver!

      Love, Donna

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