Mawage. Mawage is wot bwings us togeder tooday. Mawage, that bwessed awangment, that dweam wifin a dweam…
Sorry, but there is no way I can hear the word marriage without first thinking of that scene form The Princess Bride, and yes, it is one of my favorite movies of all time.
One of my friends has been doing this excellent writing exercise on her blog beauty for ashes for the month of September, and though I’ve been reading, it hasn’t been until today that I was struck with the imperative to write specifically for her just write! campaign, which was inspired by Five Minute Friday by the Gypsy Mama. (I’ve participated in the Five Minute Friday writing a few times, too.) It isn’t that I haven’t wanted to, but well, with me writing is a treacherous beast. I start out writing one thing then end up writing another. What I usually end up with doesn’t go in the topic I started with. But today marriage feels like a topic I need to write about.
And wuv, tru wuv, will fowow you foweva…
So back to the topic at hand. Marriage. This topic has been foremost in my mind lately. I am married. Most of my friends are married. Most of my siblings are thinking about marriage. Gay people want to get married, and there is an amendment to be voted on for the NC state constitution to ban it (which I think is ridiculous–the banning attempt, not the gay marriage).
My father died when I was seven, and my mother has been a widow ever since. She dated for a bit, and got pretty serious once, but ultimately she has declared herself done. I used to think that she was being bitter and jaded, but now I’m starting to understand.
When I first met my husband there were only three things I noticed: 1) He was being very loud with his friends in the coffee shop. 2) He had a gorgeous smile. 3) He had a broken foot. When the coffee shop was closing we finally exchanges a few words. This led to us heading on over to a 24 hour diner and talking for another five hours. I didn’t get home until after three in the morning, but I wrote in my diary before I went to bed. Yes, I still have that diary.
My first diary entry that night was cautiously hopeful. Two weeks later I wrote again, and THAT entry is from a love struck girl if ever there was one. I even wrote in a completely different color ink and made it a point to write that the color change was significant. I even quoted a line form The Bridges of Madison County in my diary, “This kind of certainty only comes once in a life time.” I just want to go back in time and slap myself for being so silly, but I do remember feeling that way. The rest is entirely too embarrassing to share, but I assure you I was completely head over heals for the man.
So tweasure your wuv.
I married him four years later. For all the silly, sappy, head over heals romantic feelings I had, I didn’t lose all my brain cells. I finished college, which was what we both wanted…most of the time. There was that one Valentine’s Day he suggested we just elope, but we waited.
Those first few years of marriage were the hardest (so far) for us. You’d think that the four years leading up to it would have prepared us, but they didn’t. Nothing does. Something about getting married changes a relationship, even between two people who are very sure of each other. I think it’s the expectations we don’t even realize we have about marriage, compounded by the ones we knowingly have and the fact that life is notorious for going all to hell in an instant without warning.
Have you the wing?
We’ve been through some tough times, and rough situations. I am not proud of all the things I’ve said or done. There are some I’m much happier not remembering, as he is as well. He, however, is blessed as most men are with the ability to move on quite easily. He is really a what’s-done-is-done kind of guy, for which I am most grateful because he can do what I struggle most with–letting go of the past, holding on to the present and letting the future happen in it’s own time.
Man an’ wife.
People who have a chance to spend time with the two of us together tend to be amused by us. We actually do engage in this sitcom-like back and forth. I have one friend who is convinced that we should be a reality show, but I don’t think it would be as interesting as she imagines. However, most people that hear us say that we are “cute the way we talk and fight.” Yes, that is a real quote from multiple people who don’t even know we hear it all the time.
Marriage is work. A LOT OF WORK! So much so, that no amount of telling you will make you believe it before you actually are married. What sustains us other than all the work is the three L’s: Love, Laughter, and Luck. Trust me.
*Photo: 1) Our wedding picture October 2, 2000. 2) Our rings.