4--one less than half way to ten. There were several occasions today that I'd announce my anniversary, people would ask me how many years and I'd proudly say 4. Their response? "OHHHH, so new! You have NO idea what marriage is even like yet, you'll know in another 20 years."
shame on them.
Well, not shame on them, but quite sad that they make it seem as if the longer you are married, the more unhappy you will become. If I didn't know any better the remarks I have heard the last few days would make me believe that marriage is a big hoax. Luckily for Doug and I, we have had many many examples of good marriages, true love and how to make that love last. Also might I add that 4 years is still has that "new car smell" but certainly should not discount the experiences that have been gained over the four wonderful years.
I'll never forget our wedding day. I'll forever remember both of reactions the moment we saw each other in the park.
I'll never forget Doug whispering in my ear, "I am so lucky, I am so lucky, I am so in love."
I'll never forget the guests who attended and celebrated with us our beautiful Sacrament and commitment we made to one another.
I'll never forget the moment I walked down the aisle, with both my mother and my father, and joined hands with Doug in a journey that I could not even have imagined.
The music, the readings, the homily, the vows--all things that vividly play back in my mind. Doug and I took great care in choosing the right music and readings and being as involved as we could be with the details of the ceremony. We wanted readings that weren't "typical" yet still spoke of the commitment we were making to each other.
I walked down the aisle to "Canticle of the Sun"
Our First Reading was Jeremiah 31: 31-34--
“Behold, the days are coming, declares the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and the house of Judah, 32 not like the covenant that I made with their fathers on the day when I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt, my covenant that they broke, though I was their husband, declares the Lord. 33 But this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, declares the Lord: I will put my law within them, and I will write it on their hearts. And I will be their God, and they shall be my people. 34 And no longer shall each one teach his neighbor and each his brother, saying, ‘Know the Lord,’ for they shall all know me, from the least of them to the greatest, declares the Lord. For I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more.”
The second reading was Romans 8:31-35, 37-39
31 What then are we to say about these things? If God is for us, who is against us? 32 He who did not withhold his own Son, but gave him up for all of us, will he not with him also give us everything else? 33 Who will bring any charge against God's elect? It is God who justifies. 34 Who is to condemn? It is Christ Jesus, who died, yes, who was raised, who is at the right hand of God, who indeed intercedes for us. 35 Who will separate us from the love of Christ? Will hardship, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? 37 No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. 38 For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor rulers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, 39 nor height, nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.
The Gospel was Matthew 5: 13-16
13"You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled by men.
14"You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden. 15Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. 16In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven.
The homily still plays back in my mind. Father Wigger combined each of our readings and packaged it up into a perfect reminder of why Doug and I were getting married. First he presented Doug and I with a candle that had three flames. He explained that each flame holds significant, equal importance to the candle. If one flame burns out, the light becomes dim and it does not shine as bright as it could. He compared that to marriage. He said it takes three flames to keep a marriage strong: Me, Doug and God. Each of us hold significant importance to the success of our marriage. He also said that it is my sole job to get Doug to heaven, as it is Doug's job to get me to Heaven--how beautiful.
fast forward 4 years. The road hasn't been perfect. But there was never a promise that it would be. What I can say is that we are stronger and more in love than ever. There is no other person that I would rather share my life with than Doug--he is it for me. period.
There is an elderly couple that lives down the street from us. It is not uncommon to see them walking down the street just holding hands--it is pretty adorable. Today, driving home I saw the two of them, sitting side by side in lawn chairs in the driveway sipping iced tea. Hands held and the wife had her head placed perfectly on her husbands shoulders. I cried. I want that. 40 years from now, I hope that Doug and I will still be crazy in love with each other and that once our children our grown, our jobs our done and the only thing left is our marriage--I hope that we will be as blissfully happy as that couple I saw today.