38 years ago today, I got married. It was a sit com of a wedding. The building my wedding dress was being altered in had a fire and I didn’t even know if I would have a dress or not. The band we hired broke up the weekend before the big day and they had to make do without a lead guitarist. The shoes that had been rented with the tuxes were wrong and the groomsmen wore hiking boots down the aisle. We had an ice storm and the photographer never showed. In spite of it all, the show went on.
Things were very different in those days. There were no destination weddings, no wedding planners. We got married in our church, had a meal catered by the Ladies Society and drove to Florida for our honeymoon. In keeping with the wedding theme, disaster 101, it was cold and rainy and I got stung by some noxious sea creature. I returned home with a delightful case of food poisoning and spent three days in the hospital, amassing a bill that seemed overwhelming at the time. Still, married we were and married we remain.
We have had ups and downs. They seemed unique to us but were in fact the normal ups and downs of most couples. We had 7 kids by birth and adoption, bought and sold a few houses. We buried our parents and saw our children married. We were present for the births of a few grandchildren and celebrated all of them. I can know about the problems of overpopulation and still anticipate the joy of holding my soon-to-be-born granddaughter.
In the midst of concern for our collective futures, I hope we can all remember to grab joy when it presents itself. I have much joy in my life and I get annoyed when it is assumed that I must be depressed or live in a constant state of fear. Nothing could be further from the truth. I love my home, drafty old barn of a place that it is, without granite countertops or crown molding. My little plot of land is precious to me. I love to plan for the location of each new tree or shrub I order. I enjoy my kids. I’m no Tiger Mama. My kids are never going to Harvard but they are kind and funny and happy. I have the best friends in the world. When I say they are like family, I really don’t do them justice. They are more than family. They’re my tribe. I’d trust them with my life.
And now I have to ask myself, how did I ever get so lucky in love. I married the nicest guy in the world. That may not seem like high praise but it really is. Bruce is honest and thoughtful and the best thing in my life. Not many woman can say that they are married to the cutest guy in the room but I can. Altogether, life is good and I’m blessed.