I will say that 1 thing im nervous about is that i know the wife will want to ride with me, and im seeing a 400lb weight limit on most bikes. is 500+lbs just out of the question on most bikes?
Also, is it true that pretty much everyone lays down a bike early on?
Give yourself a whole lot of miles before you even think of taking on a passenger. When I started riding and was all excited about it, thinking about the Spouse Thingy occasionally riding with me, even the sales guy at the dealership told me to not do it until I had a good 6,000-10,000 miles under my belt.
The Vulcan is going to be a little better balanced (less top heavy) than the 883. A comparable bike that's even better balanced than that is the Suzuki C50 or the M50. The difference isn't much, but it was enough to sway my husband from the Vulcan to the C50. There are going to be weight limits...check the GRVW before you buy if you're sure you're going to have the same bike a year or two down the road, when you're ready for a passenger.
And no, not everyone drops or lays down their bike early on. I didn't until I'd been riding a couple of years, and then it was only because someone pulled out in front of me with very little time to brake...I wound up locking up the front and was launched off the bike. Going slow, maybe 25 when I locked it up, but it still hurt like crazy to hit the ground. Lots of riders never go down. Some seem to a few times a year. Approach your riding like every car out there is out to get you...but that you don't intend to drop, lay down, or collide. Confidence + caution...
The potential is why some riders recommend getting a used bike as your first. A drop in the driveway, a forgotten side stand while parking, those hurt less emotionally with a used bike. And a good, newby friendly used bike can often be sold for close to what you paid for it when you're ready to move up.