Did I mention we celebrated 13 years of marriage this past Monday? No? We did and I’m talking about it over at WORLDMag.com today.
Thirteen years ago on December 12, Craig was sitting with me in the snack area of an Oklahoma Walmart while I scrambled to write my half of our wedding vows.
Thirteen years ago on December 13, we rehearsed what was to come the next day, followed by my scrambling to get some bridesmaids dresses finished. (I’ve always had problems with procrastination.)
Thirteen years ago on December 14, I scrambled again—to get to the hair stylist, to get my suitcase packed, to get to the church on time. Once I finally got there, my hair was ruined from rain, my bag was askew from literally throwing everything I had into it and sitting on it to get it closed, and I was crying.
Not exactly a picture-perfect beginning to a wedding.
To a wedding, no; but to a marriage (or “mawiage” in the movie The Princess Bride), it probably was a realistic picture of what was to come. It didn’t take us very long to realize that marriage would not solve all our problems or fulfill all our goals. I believe our first big argument took place two weeks later on Christmas Day.
Looking back, December doesn’t seem the smartest month to get married—particularly when that is the same month one is graduating from college and preparing to move 12 hours away from home. Truly, December 1996 was not a season of peace for us—it was exciting and stressful and hopeful and completely nuts.
Fast forward 13 years to a Monday night in the middle of December: It is our anniversary, as well as the end of finals week at the seminary, which means Craig has an exam to take and a paper to write. It is also the beginning of finals week at the school where he teaches, which means he has test-review preparations to make and final papers and exams to grade.
And I say, “I know you are busy. Let’s just stay home so you can study.” And he says, “I can study later. Let’s go out to dinner.” We get child care secured for our four kids (something else that is different from 13 years ago) and spend four hours in the middle of this crazy month eating grilled chicken sandwiches and sharing a piece of cheesecake, walking and window-shopping around a crowded mall.
It is exciting and stressful and hopeful and completely nuts.
I suppose that’s the way life is. Thirteen years ago I thought it was just that one weekend, but now I know better. And I’m OK with it. If the exciting and stressful and hopeful and completely nuts continue together, I’ll take it. In fact, I’ll take it for another 13 years, please. And another . . . and another. . . .