A gathering of ideas, rants, reflections leading up to the big day

Thursday, March 13, 2008

After the wedding.

Sometimes I forget that the wedding is just a day. One day in a whole cacophony of days I will spend with FI. We are not only preparing for a wedding but a marriage. We (okay- I) get so bogged down crunching numbers and guest list A, B & C and looking at flowers that we forget that this is ONE day.

We are lucky to have such great examples of marriages surrounding us. Our parents are still married. Mine just celebrated 42 years and are not only still in love but are best friends. Fi's have been married for 36 years and their compassion and friendship shines through.

We have great friends that have great relationships and show wonderful examples of marriage. Our friend’s marriages range from 40 years to a few months. We don’t know anyone who doesn’t appear to have a great marriage.

I do know that my parent’s marriage hasn’t been perfect and I do not expect perfection in my own. Fi and I have been together for 5 years in May (ridiculous!) and our relationship has not been perfect. We have been flawed, I have been selfish and he has been distant. But we have been honest, true and forgiving. We have also allowed each other to become more of ourselves. Fi has enabled me to take more chances and do things I never believed I could. Knowing that he believes in me makes me think anything is possible. This, to my surprise has made me a stronger person, not more dependent.

I also am aware that throughout our 5 years, Fi and I have have reached places together and some times separately. I clearly reached the “I want to marry you” level before he had mastered the “dating but serious” level. And heck, even when he beat Donkey Kong or whatever and reached the same level as me it still took some time for us to move forward. I now realize I had made a decision to wait. For him. Obviously I don’t regret that. But I know in our marriage one of us will reach a level before the other one. We are making a commitment to wait for the other to catch up.

I recently found out that one of my youth group buddies from high school was divorcing her husband. It was her decision. She decided not to wait anymore. They were not on the same level and she made the decision to move on. This allowed me reflect about my levels…my life goals and how they relate to Fi. Bottom line is that with out compromising myself I will wait. And I believe he will wait for me. We are aware that there are some levels that won’t be around forever (i.e. the baby level) and that when faced with that opportunity we are going to either have to jump on together or skip it- together.

We are two seperate beings and like Anne Morrow Lindbergh so elequently put it:

When you love someone, you do not love them all the time, in exactly the same way, from moment to moment. It is an impossibility. It is even a lie to pretend to. And yet this is exactly what most of us demand. We have so little faith in the ebb and flow of life, of love, of relationships. We leap at the flow of the tide and resist in terror its ebb. We are afraid it will never return. We insist on permanency, on duration, on continuity; when the only continuity possible, in life as in love, is in growth, in fluidity - in freedom, in the sense that the dancers are free, barely touching as they pass, but partners in the same pattern.

The only real security is not in owning or possessing, not in demanding or expecting, not in hoping, even. Security in a relationship lies neither in looking back to what was in nostalgia, nor forward to what it might be in dread or anticipation, but living in the present relationship and accepting it as it is now. Relationships must be like islands, one must accept them for what they are here and now, within their limits - islands, surrounded and interrupted by the sea, and continually visited and abandoned by the tides.

I believe that with all the examples of love and marriage we have around us and the faith we show in each other that we will have a long loving marriage. One level at a time. We just have to get past the "wedding day" level together!


Monica Surfaro Spigelman said...

you've already passed one of the most important tests by understanding about the world beyond that "one day." You can observe the partnerships around you, but know there is nothing like your own "you and me" path that is ahead. There are no straight lines and sometimes it seems that you each ramble off on your own sideline. Just remember to keep the other one in sight, meet up again on that same road, and share your side experiences (donkey kong?)so you can grow again together!

Jennifer said...

Beautiful post!!! Made my eyes tear up, and I'm so happy for you two. :) I love that you wrote about having to wait for the other to get to the same level, and that you decided that you will always wait, and that he will always wait for you. Awesome.