Tuesday, March 10, 2015

the one thing I know for sure about marriage

“He's more myself than I am. Whatever our souls are made of, his and mine are the same.” 

Mr. Fantastic and I celebrate fourteen years of marriage today. These years of working hard and loving big have come and gone in quiet whirlwind.

Some days I can't believe we aren't still twenty-five. Others I feel a strange kindred spirit among the grey-haired women taking the chair exercise classes at the YMCA. We are sandwiched in the middle of youth and true maturity, and while we are wiser than we were fourteen years ago, the greatest thing we know is this:

All that we know for sure can fit in a small book, and all that we don't know could fill the ocean.

A few times over the years, I have attended weddings in which the bride and groom write their own vows. This poetic ritual is always touching, but the longer I am married, the more I value the traditional ones we took. When the bad times came, when sickness fell upon us, when life was less "happily ever after" and more "sorrowfully for a while", those vows came in handy.

We didn't promise each other a perfect life. We promised to faithfully make the most of one we have been given together.

With the passing of years, I find myself giving such different advice than I used to give to newly married people. I used to tell them things they could do to make their lives more fun, their dates more romantic, their love more expressive, or their arguments less damaging.

But now, I give the same advice to myself and everyone else, it seems: Just be and then let it be. Be friends, be lovers, be together. Let it be hard, let it be fun, let him be in a bad mood, let it be easy, let it be good, let him love you, let it be bad, let yourself fail, let hope and love win. It will all go by so fast, and we won't remember all that we did, but we will cherish who we have been for each other.

These days I am learning to sit back and breathe deeply. Life is heavy at times, but we really are heading somewhere wonderful. The two have become one. We have had our souls mixed together, woven into this beautiful thing called marriage. It's impossible to see where my soul ends and his begins.

Fourteen down, fifty or so glorious years to go.

Thank you, Morgan, for being with me, for belonging to me, and for accepting me just as I am. You are my favorite person in the whole world. I love who you are to me and for me. Put simply. I love you.

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