It's Jamey's and my fourteenth wedding anniversary today.
I can't believe it. It doesn't seem like fourteen years ago. It seems like yesterday.
We have certainly had our share of hard times. But in these fourteen years, I have learned a lot about love. I have learned a lot about what marriage really is. So here you go. . .
Having a wedding is not having a marriage. The wedding is one day. A point in time. Unfortunately lots of brides get so focused on the wedding itself, that they forget that they will be making a commitment to another person. I remember telling myself over and over that at the end of the day on December 14th, no matter what else happened, the important thing was to have Jamey, me, the preacher, and God there, and that we needed to say our vows and mean them. That was what I needed to focus on. Not whether or not I had the right dress, or the right flowers, or the biggest band, or the biggest ring. My cake designer thought the most important thing was our cake. She was a little obsessed. But that's a story for another time.
I have also come to recognize that marriage is hard work. I always thought that being married would be easy. But it's harder than staying single in many ways. Then why get married at all? Because as far as I'm concerned, the rewards of being married, and doing the sometimes really hard work to stay married, those rewards far outweigh the rewards of being single. I have a person who's been with me for a long time. He knows me better than anyone else. He supports me like no other. He cares about taking care of me and cherishing me. And that, for me, is a prize worth holding on to. Funny enough, it didn't happen overnight. The way he does all those things for me. And cherishes me. But you know what? sometimes it still doesn't happen. The supporting and the caring and the cherishing. But those things are things I think you learn how to do the longer you are married. And we are just coming into our own with it. And it's starting to get really sweet.
Mostly though, I've learned that marriage is a choice. I've said it on here before. I choose to be married to Jamey every day. I try to consciously make that choice every day. That way, when we go through a rough patch (and believe me, there have been some), I continue to know that I am choosing to be married to my husband. I want to be with him through thick and thin.
Are we great at being married? Maybe, maybe not. All I know is we are both determined to stay together. And so we work really hard at it. Is it because we have a son together that we are so determined to make it? Honestly? I don't think so. I think it goes back to the commitment we made to each other fourteen years ago. I took it seriously. Jamey did too. I'd commit to it all over again. That's how strongly I feel about it.
Lest you think I'm preaching or bragging, I'm not. At all. We aren't perfect. We have both made some doozie mistakes. I bet you are wondering what those are. But if you think I'm gonna tell you, you're crazy. That's the husband/wife confidentiality agreement. ;o) But we absolutely know we aren't perfect in our relationship. That's why it's such hard work! And that's why when we get it right, it's awesome!
This relationship I choose to be in is not one that I would ever want to say, "Well if it doesn't work out, we can always get divorced." That's just not for me. I'm not saying I'd never get divorced. I don't like to tempt fate that way. However, I can tell you that I will work my hind end off to keep that from happening. Counseling, workshops, whatever it takes. I choose this life, because it is worth it.
I love you honey. Happy Anniversary!