On Facebook, there is a loooonnnnnngggg personal message thread with myself, my niece Amanda, and my friend Lisa, covering every possible type of topic, rant, and amusing comment possible. I don't really remember how we got to the topic of weddings (probably commenting on some celebrity wedding or divorce), but I commented that it seems that these days, weddings are a huge, elaborate, expensive production. People are obsessed with their weddings. And then, they are unwilling to put the same level of commitment and work into the actual marriage. So you have Broadway-show-type wedding days, followed by marriages that break up sometimes within the same year. (My husband's family excels at this kind of thing.)
Why am I going on about this? Well, because at approximately 5:45 p.m. this evening, it will be 37 years of wedded bliss/annoyance/indifference for me and The Tim. That's a long time. Some days longer than others, as those in any kind of relationship I'm sure will understand.
Our wedding was small. We have spent more years than not barely making it to pay the bills. We don't have children, and have spent so much time listening to how we should because you don't know true love until you are a parent. We have been called self-obsessed because we are not parents. We have been there for each other when our own parents died. We have rejoiced and enjoyed the births and other milestone moments of our many nieces and nephews, great-nieces and great-nephews. We have adored and continue to adore all the pets who have been in our families. We have gone through a lot of cancer together (me as the patient, him as the caretaker). We have discussed many topics both important and ridiculous well beyond their lifespans. We have proven my mother's comment that it was a good thing we found each other, "because it saves two other people." And we have always agreed that we would never divorce because each of us are too stubborn to admit it isn't working.
And there are at least a million other things I could add to the list.
But whatever it's been, we have done it together - physically, spiritually, or mentally. And even if not consciously, it's been work. More work than planning a wedding that will be remembered for all time.
Because our wedding was one day, thirty-seven years ago. But our anniversary is today.
Life can work out pretty well overall if you just pay attention.