It was a Friday, a lot like today except warmer. I was 22 and did not know very much. Worse yet, I thought I knew a lot, definitely more than the average person knew, especially about marriage and relationships. One thing I knew for sure: I wanted to get married. He was a willing participant. We barely knew each other, except for however much you could learn from dating for 7 1/2 months. He had no idea what he was in for, and neither did I.
Sometimes people tell me I could write a book and that sounds appealing. Whenever I think about writing a book, I imagine it would be a marriage book. Not a “how to” book, but a “how it is” book. Or how it’s been. How we’ve gotten through. How we became friends.
My blog is titled “It started with coffee” and I thought the book title should be similar so I was thinking “It started with Yukon Jack.” I’ve told a couple people my proposed title and nobody has said, “Wow, what a great title! I think that’s the title you should definitely use for your marriage book!” But, I still think it sounds like the title to an interesting book. It certainly has been an interesting 28 years.
But I have no idea how to write a book.
On our 25th anniversary, I wrote a Facebook post about marriage and I still believe what I wrote. Marriage is not at all what I imagined. Good communication is an illusion. Sometimes the whole thing seems impossible.
But when I think back to July 6, 1990, I can’t help but smile. Mom & Dad walking me down the aisle at the Methodist church in Hastings. Toni in the Maid of Honor dress she bought at Casual Corner. David B., our Best Man then and now. Pastor Duane, reading verses from Ecclesiastes 4, and assuring us the cord of 3 strands was tied really tight. It must be.
The book could have some chapters like, “How to plan your wedding in 5 weeks” with some wedding tips like:
*Keep the ceremony short. My goal was a 1/2 hour and we were done in 28 minutes! Success!
*Wearing your mom’s dress – great idea. Reduces shopping, saves money, plus it is very special.
*Keeping your last name – also a great idea, even if you end up changing it 7 years later. Either way is okay.
*You should definitely get a job at the venue where you will have your wedding reception because this will save your generous parents 30% on the meal.
*Hire the harpist. You won’t regret it.
*Think of your very favorite dessert in the whole world. Mine is cheesecake from Café Latte, also known as our wedding cake.
There would be a “things I would do differently” section, with some suggestions like:
*Find out what the groom wants. It’s his wedding too.
*Premarital counseling – think of this as a really good idea, not just a hoop to jump through.
*Go on a honeymoon that requires airline tickets. I think that would’ve been really nice.
But the wedding is a day. The marriage chapters are what really matter….commitment, laughter, faith, painting together, moving, moving again, and living in an RV. The wedding is a day, but the marriage is the real adventure. Luckily, the man I married, my opposite (even in Myers Briggs numbers), is a better partner than I ever could’ve imagined for the journey.
Happy Anniversary. Here’s to another year.