I met my husband at a dinner party while we were both living in Raleigh, North Carolina. Photographic evidence exists to prove this happened. However, as my husband likes to remind me, I don’t remember our first meeting. He likes to claim it was because I was drunk. I like to claim it is because he excels at being a wall flower, to the point where even though there were fewer than ten people at the table and he was seated directly across from me, he was still able to make himself invisible. He counters that I was too busy flirting with a guy named Thor. I rebut that the guy was actually named Lore, was half my height, and an asshole. This is where the conversation usually runs off the rails entirely as we start making fun of the name Lore.
Ten years ago today we got married on Cape Cod (because we were living in Boston at the time). It was a beautiful day. The sun was shining, the weather was mild, there were still plenty of leaves on the trees, and all of my bridesmaids were hanging out in my room eating éclairs, ironing their dresses, while we waited to get our hair done. My hubby-to-be was biding his time watching college football in a bar with his buddies (because, like all good VT alumni, our wedding was scheduled around the game.) There were the usual bits and bobs of drama, all of them caused by my mother, but why discuss the negative? I remember putting on my dress, with the hair, and the makeup, and the veil and the handmade flats (because I totally refused to wear heels, even on my wedding day) and feeling beautiful. I still looked like me, mind you, but I felt beautiful.
We had a Catholic mass, though I ixnayed the kneelers at the last minute. Fainting syndrome + kneeling + wedding dress = very bad idea. I even cried, which I like to blame on the copious amounts of cold medicine I was taking to get rid of the flu symptoms (I was popping Dayquil like they were M&Ms). The reception, though small, was a blast. Though we were honored to have so many friends and family attend from so many different states, our invitations landed in the mail on September 12, 2001, so many balked at traveling. The dance floor was in continuous use, the bartenders never got a rest, and I think it is very safe to say that a good time was had by all. In the bridal suite at the end of the very long night, my husband pulled 67 pins out of my hair and sniggered at my bright blue Smurf butt, the occupational hazard of wearing my something blue bridal panties. I’d love to say that we consummated our union immediately, but I was bone tired, had a throbbing headache from the aforementioned 67 pins, and figured I’d had enough sex in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts; I could wait for the Caribbean. TMI alert - it was worth the wait.
So where are we ten years later? I am pleased to report we are still happy, thank you very much. We live a small town life. Every few months, we meet with the same group of friends for dinner. I go to all the small events for the kids; he joins me at the big ones. A good night involves a full DVR, a blanket, and take-out Chinese. Neither of us are high-maintenance when it comes to tokens of affection. Take out the trash, empty the dishwasher, bake some butterscotch cookies, help with the laundry, and make sure there is a big stack of magazines (for me) during Sunday night football (for him). I don’t need diamonds, he doesn’t need lingerie. We are simple people who want simple things. Love. Respect. Laughter. Sex. Sleep. A little bit of common sense when it comes to fighting (I refer to the classic Kenny Roger’s song The Gambler on this score. Know when to hold ‘em, Know when to fold ‘em) and a lot of patience when it comes to dealing with family. Having children certainly complicated matters, those damn things take up all of our time, energy, disposable income, and functioning brain cells, but we wouldn’t have it any other way. We made our choice (twice) and we’ll just have to live with them, watch them grow, and try to do our best by them.
But it’s only been a decade. A mere drop in the bucket, a splash in the fountain, a bucket in the ocean of time we have left to spend together. I’m in this til death do us part and there is plenty of time left on my clock. Let’s see where the next ten years takes us, then the next ten, and then the next ten after that. It’s a long way until retirement, then enjoying our twilight years, then letting our kids take care of us for a change. Tonight, we’ll pop in the wedding video, once again explain to the crying daughter that she wasn’t there because she wasn’t born yet, and have fun reliving the first best day of our life together. But it’ll have to be early, because the game’s on at 8 and I’ve got my famous buffalo chicken dip in the fridge. It may not be the lavish week-long beach front vacation we envisioned all those years ago, but it’ll do just fine.