Monday, February 12, 2007

You're Still The One

"Like most people on their wedding day, we didn't understand that love is about embracing imperfection."~Rona Maynard, Chatelaine, Feb 2007
I was 19 and dearest one 21 when, twenty five years ago today, we stood before a Justice of the Peace, fumbled our vows (I said "awful wedded husband instead of lawful"), managed not to erupt into giggles and got ourselves hitched. We brought a 75 year old friend along to be our witness, not realizing we needed two. We forgot that we needed rings so my engagement ring was removed from one hand and put on the other. We have no wedding pictures because we forgot our camera. By the grace of God here we are today, not only lovers, but friends. If you click on the title of this post you'll go to a site that has the lyrics of the song we listen to often, especially today.

There's been a lot of living between then and now.

* Addictions,relapse and recovery,
* 3 bankruptcies,
* 19 residences, 2 provinces
* 5 pregnancies,
* 2 miscarriages,
* 3 full term babies.
* 17 surgeries,
* 3 rounds on welfare,
* 2 on food banks,
* 2 post secondary educations,
* 5 church homes,
* 4 denominations.

Numbers are incapable of telling the whole story. We are not defined by them, they simply chart our journey without describing the landscape. There can be beautiful flowers in the desert.

Gratitude for having reached this day and for the journey that has brought us this far outweighs all else. There came a crucial point where I was going to walk out the door because I was unwilling to embrace, or even recognize, my own imperfections while I was intently focused on dearest one's. All I can say is that God's grace met dearest one where he was at, despite my ultimatum, and the result was that he came home a changed man. Had that not happened, my pride and his would have seen us go our separate ways. We had two children 3 and under and I was pregnant with our youngest son. We still get teary when we think of how close we came to missing out on sharing the journey to today.

I don't even know where to start to tell the rest of the story. So I'll leave you with this verse from the book of James that says it all.
"Kind mercy wins over harsh judgement every time."


onionboy said...

May the Lord continue to bless you with His peace in all the ups and downs. Congrats.

Poor Mad Peter said...

God's Grace from here on in, Hopester--only, may you be more aware of it.

Funny you should quote Rona Maynard: her mother was Fredelle Maynard, who wrote a memoir called Raisins and Almonds, of her prairie childhood as a Jewish girl in a small town. She later married, had two daughters; problem was, she was neurotic and he was alcoholic and both daughters paid huge prices for their parents' ways. The other daughter is Joyce Maynard, and if she sounds familiar, think J.D.Salinger.

In case you're getting depressed about possible life parallels, don't--you are taking the needed steps to make sense of your life. Fredelle never did.

Heidi Renee said...

Happy Anniversary Hope!!

What a life - far more have had far less to deal with and never made it - I am so proud of you both!!


Duckie said...

"There came a crucial point where I was going to walk out the door because I was unwilling to embrace, or even recognize, my own imperfections while I was intently focused on dearest one's."


Happy Anniversary! :)

Jim said...

Happy anniversary, Hope. Marriage is an individual process that requires, in our society, the merging of two different minds. To not just have survived for 25 years, but to have made it a "marriage" is worthy of applause. It is, as far as I'm concerned, one of life's greatest treasures.......

daisymarie said...

Happiest of celebrations to you! Our 28th anniversary is on Saturday. We've been through many of the things on your list too. And love continues to be sweet!

Antony said...

What a wonderful grace....

~m2~ said...

Blessings, dear one - today and always and in all ways :)

Jackie said...

Congrats! And here's to many more years!

Anonymous said...

Congratulations to you and your dearest one, Hope. You are both an inspiration to me.

Anonymous said...

Happy aniversary, Hope and dearest one!

sue said...

Happy Anniversary Hope! Enjoy the day with you dearest one.

Pru said...

I tried so hard to phone you guys when I was in Wales but it didn't here is a belated Happy 25 years...and thank you for showing me that it takes prayer and hard work but a life together can be a beautiful joyful thing, not just tears and anger. I love you both.