We got married on Sunday, December 23rd but before the wedding there was the annual church pageant and my youngest grandchild at the time was the Baby Jesus, so right after church I rushed home to get into my wedding attire and head back to the church to walk down the aisle to marry my best friend.
Before the marriage ceremony we made arrangements to have the family photos taken, and it was the first time all six of our grown children were in the same room together, in fact for several, it was the first time they had met their soon to be step brothers and sisters. And from that day forward, everyone would refer to our family as the Brady Bunch, I have the 3 girls, my husband dad to 3 boys. We only lacked a large station wagon, a mid century home and a maid named Alice.
We met online on Match.com and we corresponded for almost 3 weeks before we decided to meet. I think that gave us the time we needed to have the assurance that the person we were writing back and forth with was real. I’m glad we waited to meet, although he suggested our first in person meeting be a hike at a state park in January, my friends thought I was crazy. As it turned out, it was rainy, so we met at a local coffee shop and spent over 2 hours that day getting to know one another.
Before I started dating again, I made a list of all the qualities I was looking for the second time around, it was a very interesting process. At the top of my list was honesty because without honesty, you can’t have a healthy relationship. Another top contender was thoughtfulness followed by by integrity. My personal favorite on the list was the ability to untangle Christmas lights, because if you can do that without yelling, swearing or cracking open several beers in the process, that’s a good thing! I didn’t have any tangled Christmas lights, but I did have a broken rod in my closet that he was able to fix without any drama.
I think another test is the ability to move, that’s a big one, lots of stress coupled with physical stamina and not knowing where all your stuff is, it’s the perfect storm of a relationship test. We passed that test with flying colors after we were married, not once, not twice, not three times, but four times in an eight year time period.
It takes courage to take the leap the second time just because you have first hand experience of how everything can go horribly wrong. But with honesty, thoughtfulness, humor and love you learn to let the little stuff stay little and you think twice or even three times before not choosing a hill to die on.
Never in my wildest dreams did I ever think I’d be a divorce statistic and that I would enter the dating scene in my mid-fifties. Life is funny that way, you think your life will take a straight course, marriage, kids, grand kids, sitting in the rocking chair celebrating 50 years, and then something else happens, but it’s still kids, but now it’s three more kids, it’s still grand kids, now with one more cutey pie to love and now instead of celebrating 50 years together, we’ll happily take each year as it comes along.
I know how fortunate I am, to find love with the kindest man I’ve ever known, and to be embraced by his family.
On this our 11th Anniversary we’ll celebrate with our usual tradition and be thankful we were given another chance at love and happiness.