We were giddy and nervous, but mostly not nervous at all. Getting married, to us, was like brushing your teeth before you go to bed–it was the only sensible thing to do. But if you had to stand up and brush your teeth in front of friends and family, I’m sure you’d have a bit of awkward nerves, too. And it showed. We forgot which song we were supposed to walk out into the ceremony to, so we waited–huddled together around the corner through the whole song, wondering, second-guessing, almost-walking-out-but-then-at-the-last-minute-staying-put. And then the song started again and we realized “yup, that was supposed to be it.” and we came out.
But that’s not all. The evening before the wedding, we held a quick dress rehearsal. We chose who would read what, when, and we called it a day–only Andreas’s sister hadn’t been there, and we’d chosen her and her husband to read something, and then quite completely forgotten to tell them. So, in the middle of the ceremony, suddenly nothing was happening. Andreas, looking embarrassed, got up from his groom’s chair, walked over to his sister in the middle of the audience, and handed her a reading which she, very sportlingly, read on the spot. We signed our names, were pronounced, and very nearly forgot to exchange rings. Then off we trotted, under an (indoor) rain of rice.
And now we’re here.
It’s been three years, and they haven’t been without challenges. I thought living in Waukegan was a challenge. And then I thought having to live apart after only having been married a few months was a challenge. And then I moved halfway around the world, and I thought that was a challenge. Then came the empty months waiting, the visa things, and trying to get used to expat life, and that was a challenge. And then came moving to Denmark, learning Danish, and building our “real” life together, and that was a challenge. And then came Theo and blew everything else out of the water.
It’s been three years, but especially during this last one, we’ve gotten to really see what our marriage is made out of, and guys, it’s good stuff. It’s patience and trust, and never giving up. It’s loyalty and silliness, and two player games. It’s compromise, attention, and saying a million thank yous.
I’m about to get real gushy, so I’ll rein myself in a little bit here, but you know what I’m talking about. Sleep deprivation and stress doesn’t bring out the best in anyone (although if I’m wrong, and it does, that person would be the most awesome parent in the world), and we’ve had a lot of that in the past year. But quite honestly, working together through what it has brought out, has pulled more strongly together than anything ever has before.
Three years ago, I was the same in love as I am today. I’m not going to say that I’m more in love because I remember that day, and that 22-year-old girl that I was, and that love I had, and it was every bit as big as the love I have today. But, the more time goes by, the better life gets, because my life can only be improved by spending more and more of it Andreas. At every anniversary, a small part of me feels triumph–another month/year under my belt, another happy gem to add to my collection.
After this last year, we’ve seen more and uglier facets of each other than we have before, and we’ve accepted each one helping each other polish the parts that we knew needed polishing. And in some way, I’m happier now, knowing that Andreas has seen all those parts of me that aren’t the best, and knowing that Andreas loves me anyway.
So, we’re ready for year four.