An Anniversary Post

Today is our third wedding anniversary. I looked it up and apparently we’re supposed to give each other leather.

Ummm. . .

I’m assuming that by “leather,” they actually meant, “blog post.”

I realize that three years is a miniscule span of time in terms of a marriage, at least the one I hope to have. I’m not going to pretend that I’m experienced or have any great insights about it except to say one thing: I like it. I like being married, and I never thought I would. It’s surprising coming from me.

But then, most of my life is surprising to me. Most of the significant events in my life started with me saying, “I’ll never ________,” and then doing exactly what I said I’d never do.

I moved in with CC when the kids came to live with us, and we didn’t get married until about two years later. I thought me moving in was enough of a commitment. In my mind it was; I wasn’t planning on going anywhere, and marriage was just an unnecessary formality.

My first niggling doubt about not getting married came from #3 a few months after we all started living together. She came home from school one day and I could tell something was on her mind. She seemed frustrated. I asked her what was wrong and she replied, “Can I just tell people you’re my stepmom? Cause you sort of are, and it’s just easier than saying, ‘my dad’s girlfriend’.”

I told her, “Of course.”

In that moment I saw how everything had changed- and how things needed to change. I suddenly understood that most parents automatically consider how their personal decisions will affect their children, but in this case it hadn’t even entered my mind. I knew I needed to change that characteristic in myself.

I took an informal survey over an extended period of time while trying to make it not look like I was doing that. I learned that none of the kids were opposed to me getting married to their dad (or at least, if they were, they weren’t going to tell me, which is kind of the same thing because you can only work with what they give you).

As for CC? He was waiting for me patiently.

I was finally ready to tell him my big news. I said, “I’m not one hundred percent opposed to getting married anymore.”

I’m nothing if not romantic.Β I think he was afraid to breathe, for fear I’d change my mind.

I said, “But I want to be asked.” Logic never plays a part in these things.

He continued to wait patiently. Nothing happened from his end, so I carried on.

Some time later I said, “I kind of started planning our wedding.”

He waited even more patiently.

Eventually, I said, “Hey, you still have to ask me to marry you.”

He kept on displaying his incredible patience. He had heard me rant for a long time about my feelings about marriage, and he was afraid he was going to screw it up and I’d back out.

He also may have wanted to get me a ridiculously expensive ring and was planning on selling a kidney to get it. Perhaps one of my own, without my knowledge.

Eventually, our friend Michelle called him and said, “I found the ring she wants. It’s in your budget and it has a black diamond. Now, do you want to get it, or should I?”

He got it. He asked me. I said yes.

In the spirit of our anniversary, here are my three favorite things about our wedding.

1) Our friends.

They were incredibly generous with their time and talents and did all the work, like decorating and making my dress happen and literally everything else.

2) The Amish Outlaws. Our band.

If you do nothing else, click on that link and check out their website because they’re way beyond awesome. We didn’t have A Song, so they made it be Kung Fu Fighting. With swords.

Me looking badass with a sword
me losing

Friends of ours who brought their three-year-old daughter later heard her describing weddings based on her experience at ours: “First they kiss, and then they hit each other with sticks.”

3) The attendants.

My bridesmaids:

The best man, who did a lot of this:

Some of that:

And eventually, my very favorite part, this:

Ran away during the ceremony. Hauled ass down the beach like he was on a mission from God. We kept on, because that whole “the show must go on” thing is kind of in our blood. We knew someone would catch him and bring him back, and we were sort of occupied with trying to not laugh too much so we could still say our vows. Thank God he didn’t have the rings.

#5 to this day has no recollection of that moment. It truly was my favorite thing about the wedding.

So, CC, today I say thank you for being my best friend and for making me laugh. I love you, and I love our crazy life. I never would have picked this life in a million years, but I’m so glad it picked me.

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63 thoughts on “An Anniversary Post

  1. Happy Anniversary! πŸ™‚ The beachy piratey theme looked awesome and very relaxed. Classic comment by the three year old about how weddings play out, lol! If only every wedding ceremony were that action packed (I’m one of “those” guests who sits yawning in the back waiting for it all to be over so we can eat already!).

  2. Congratulations! I love this post! The electricity failed in Lagos as I was drying my hair on the morning of our wedding – so you had a run away member of the wedding party – I had wet hair! πŸ™‚

    1. Always the things you don’t expect! Someone’s lock broke on their hotel room too. I don’t remember who it was but it was while we were getting ready. I have pics of the maintenance guy trying to fix the lock and all the kids hanging on him.

  3. “HAPPY ANNIVERSARY!”
    First, let me just say that I would be more than happy if I got leather for my anniversary. Pick yourself out a nice jacket, pair of pumps (they’re made of leather), or a skirt, and make him pay for it. Works for me!
    I loved that little story because it almost made me believe in true love again. Sorry..I’ve become jaded. I’m glad that some of you are able to still maintain that magic. I, for one, know how hard you have to work at it to do so. You know, it’s funny that #3 and her feelings on this was what finally started you thinking about marrying. I was fine with just living together too, until my daughter told me she was pregnant with my first grandchild. Suddenly this nausea came over me as I saw myself being the grandma that was ‘shacking up’ with some guy. We married right after. Not that we hadn’t been tossing around the idea, but that was the final push I needed to make it happen. I think it’s wonderful that you found complete happiness in that already-a-family you joined. It makes me believe in fate, in that maybe all they’d been waiting for to complete them, was you. I wish you many more happy years.

  4. I don’t even know where to start – how much I LOVE your writing – or how much I LOVE your family.

    What a wonderful bunch of pirates you are!!! I LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE it!!

    Such a beautiful story that speaks to the belief that everything – EVERYTHING – happens for a reason – and in all things there is a plan.

    Congrats to you and your crew:) argg….

    Happy Anniversary!!!!

  5. This is such a great post! I loved every part of it. It is so apparent you were the missing piece of their puzzle and with you they are now complete. Congratulations and I wish you many more happy years together!

  6. Beautiful! Happy Anniversary!
    If it helps at all, I was 45 minutes late for our wedding, and Number One Son walked me down the aisle with his hand over his eyes. Then, he laid down on the ground and splashed in the fountain, which resulted in a giant staph infection on his finger the next day! πŸ™‚
    What a great story you and your family have… love every glimpse. Have an amazing day!

  7. What a totally awesometastic post. Congratulations! Three years is indeed a major accomplishment, especially with everything that came in the deal, which you seem born to juggle. You’re all so lucky to have each other! And I totally love every single thing you mentioned about your wedding. I actually LOL’d at #5 running away. I don’t generally LOL. Well done you, and all the best blessings for the coming year together!

  8. Congratulations my friend. Hard to believe it’s been three years already. And now I understand that bringing our daughter (who was afraid of sand at the time) to your wedding was the right thing to do – it’s part of your anniversary gift, of leather.

    1. I totally forgot she was afraid of sand! She’s an integral part of the story now. I just wish your other child hadn’t been so drunk. You see him in the pictures and he can’t even walk! πŸ™‚

  9. Happy Anniversary!! I’m glad it picked you, too (but I sure do know what you mean) – it’s obvious how much you love your family, and we all love reading about them! The pictures are great (yay #5!). On what beach did you get married?

      1. That’s fantastic! It looks like it was such a beautiful wedding. We had ours at the Water’s Edge in Bayville – it was awesome!

  10. Happy Anniversary! Thank you for sharing your adventures with us! I wish you many many many more adventures and wonderful years together! And I have to ask… was there bacon at your wedding for #5? πŸ˜‰

    1. I wish I could answer that question! I have no idea even though I helped pick out the food. I got to eat two pieces of shrimp and one bite of wedding cake. Let’s just say there was bacon.

  11. I would love for someone to give me leather. It could be kinky or just regular… actually preferably regular. I have a jacket that needs patching up and I don’t want any psychological damage.

  12. Congrats on the Anniversary! We recently celebrated our 41st, and each and every celebration reminds us of how lucky we were to find each other, and what it takes to build a strong family. Looks like you are off to a great start!

  13. The best weddings reflect the lives and personalities of the couple being married…and yours wins on all counts. Congratulations on the first three years of your very special marriage!
    Jodi

  14. Great post! The spontaneous things our niece did during our ceremony are some of my favorite memories, too. Kids know how to mix it up. Happy Anniversary.

  15. Oh, I SO relate to this post. I, too, am an “accidental stepmom” of 2 and the “real” mom of two. I would never in a million years have thought that my husband or this crazy life would be good for me, but thank God, I was insane enough to go along with it. I love marriage (5 years in) and I love the four crazy kids that we call “ours.”

    Blessings to you and belated happy anniversary!

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