Friday, 17 August 2012

Wedding Anniversary No.2

I made a collage last year on our first wedding anniversary, accompanied by the following reflection:
 "Sometimes western culture 
seems to celebrate being a bride 
at the expense of being a wife. 
When the white dress is packed away 
and all the guests have gone home, 
real beauty begins."

Another year on and having recently attended a 50th wedding celebration, I'm completely astounded and blown away - it just gets better.

I don't say that to be smug, or to make people who are already aching hurt even more. I don't say it to shed light on how much I love my husband or draw other people into the detail of our relationship - if you can't see devotion and commitment in observing our attitudes and actions from afar, then all the declarations of love in the world are empty and embarrassingly unworthy.

I say it because I know how tempting it can be to sell yourself short: to stop waiting for someone who complements and enhances you (and vice versa), someone you can completely respect and be overjoyed to share life with. Sometimes it seems easier to settle for someone who... just does the least harm. But some waits are truly worth it.

And I say it because, when you do find someone wonderful, I know how tempting it can be to not make extravagant promises you're afraid you won't live up to, to not give it your all or not make the sacrifices to follow through. If love is like fire, sometimes it's exceedingly uncomfortable to sit in its furnace and watch your independence go up in smoke so that the beauty of interdependence can be forged instead.

But people do it. Really ordinary people - like us, like the couple whose golden anniversary we celebrated. People make a life together: one life, together.

I just feel compelled to offer a reminder, to stand up and be counted as a witness to a truth that sometimes feels like its disappearing: it is possible.

And oh. my. God!! It's amazing.

Thank you.

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