At 2:00 pm...30 years ago today, I walked down the aisle. I remember the day as if it was yesterday. My husband-to-be was standing at the front of the church with tears in his eyes. He was the only person I saw, despite the church being full. I was wearing a long white wedding gown with a long train. I had the veil over my eyes as I walked down the aisle to the traditional wedding march. The entire wedding was very simple and very traditional.
We did have a few snags that day before and during the ceremony. First of all, I lost my husband's wedding ring. I spent most of the morning in a frantic search until I finally found it. Also, that morning, I had so much on my mind that I almost got hit by a car as I was crossing the street. At the church, our flower girl was late and so I didn't get to have the rose petals thrown down in front of me before I walked down the aisle. My dad was drunk, so I pretty much held him up as he walked me down the aisle. When it came time to put the ring on my husband's finger, I had a hard time getting it to go on. I was frantically whispering to him, "I can't get it on." He finally had to slip it on himself. (To this day he teases me and says we are not really married because he had to put on his own wedding ring).
Despite the flaws, it was an otherwise perfect wedding. I was so young and idealistic. I had no clue what the next 30 years would hold for us...which was actually a blessing. Had I known, I may very well have been too scared to have said that final "I do".
I've never been one to run from my problems...so when I vowed to love, honor and cherish this man until death we do part, I took those vows very seriously. Have I ever wanted to leave? Yes. We have been through just about everything a couple can go through....sickness,numerous job losses, depression, infidelity, mental illness, a stillbirth, the death of both of our parents, the rape of a daughter.
Still, there have been many good times as well. We have 3 beautiful children. The positive things are what I try and focus on. We still love each other after all of these years. But marriage is not an easy road...and those who start off thinking it is are in for a shock at some point along the way. Marriage is the most difficult thing I have ever done...and at times, the most rewarding.
We have always tried to keep God at the center of our marriage and I have absolutely no doubt that He is the reason we are here today, celebrating 30 years of marriage.
Wow...30 YEARS. Quite a milestone, isn't it?