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Love & Marriage

When I was young and single, I always wondered how a man and woman could stay married for 25, 40, 50 or more years. I also wondered why someone would get married, make vows in front of family and God only to say, "Oh! It's not working, I want a divorce." What's the point there? Why bother to promise to have and to hold, for richer or poorer, in sickness or health...then say, "Nope, just kidding!" These thoughts, along with the fact that my parents divorced when I was young, made me very leery of marriage. I promised myself I would never get married unless or until I was positive that I would be able to live with that person until death.

I met my husband when I was 23. I was the single mother of a 15 month old daughter. We met at a point in my life where I had given up any thought of marriage. I didn't even want to be friends with a man, let alone have an intimate relationship. All that changed the moment I saw my husband for the first time.

There are many who say love at first sight doesn't exist. There are those who will tell you that there is no such thing as a "soul mate". Well, maybe. All I know is my life changed in one instant. My plans to move out of state evaporated. My plan to stay single forever flew out the window. My mouth went dry and my stomach flipped. I knew I had just met the man I would marry. All I had to do was convince him. It took about a week.

I don't think it was love at first sight for my husband. In fact, I'm not sure he was even very attracted to me at first. But I was pretty aggressive-he liked that. Within three months we were living together. A year later, we had a daughter together. Two years from the month we met, we eloped. We were married in a small church with the preacher's daughter and her friend as witnesses. Boy, were our mothers ticked. But we made it up to them by having a huge party on our first anniversary.

It's funny. We had been living together for two years by the time we got married, and our first year together was hell on wheels! Marriage seemed easy after that. I asked my husband if he felt any different and he said no. I didn't either. I think I was married to him that first day.

You might get the idea that our life together has been all sunshine and roses. Not so. We've had problems galore. Jealousy for one. Grew out of that. Lack of money. Adjusted. Different viewpoints on everything. Compromised. Argued. Made up. Neither of us ever expected it to be easy. We worked at it. Together.

This past year has been particularly tough. Our oldest daughter moved out and bummed around for months before deciding to get a job and get her act together. I suffered some major "empty nest" feelings. We have had major money problems which have pushed us both to the limits. But I was sitting alone one night and I realized, whether we stay together or not, I will never love anyone the way I love my husband. Nobody will ever make me feel loved the way he loves me. I sometimes wonder if love is enough. But I never wonder if it is there.

My sister has often said, "You two will be married forever." I guess that's probably true.


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site last update January 2010