Today is our 10th wedding anniversary. And although it marks the day we officially coupled, if there is such a thing as unconscious coupling, this day ten years ago would be a fine display. Our bags were packed, our tickets were in hand, the train left the station as the spectators waved and cheered us on not knowing that we were on board still debating if any other place might be a better destination than wherever our train was heading.
Despite its beauty, our wedding was akin to a “Dewey Defeats Truman” headline. We were preemptive and heralding a victory that had not happened.
Groundbreaking, yes. In the very literal sense of breaking ground where a building would be constructed. For us, it was more of a totem building ceremony and meant that we really needed to grab our shovels and get to work: would we be burying or uncovering us?
It was hard to tell for a long while. And I asked myself the question every single day.
The Good News: grace carried us. Grace and the arms of friends and family. Both circled around us, and helped us dig. It seemed that neither grace nor our people knew the answer to the question either, but both were squarely there for the job and would hold us through whatever answer lay at the bottom of this hole.
Six months after our wedding, on Easter weekend, my husband re-proposed to me. I hopefully accepted. The pole went into the ground we’d broken. We marked it with a cross - a resurrection had happened.
Less than two months later, I was pregnant. We were exuberant, excited, and careful. We knew we could not lay the weight of our marriage on a child. So we continued to practice the art of union - a difficult, complex, sometimes terrifying and mostly maddening process. We had another wedding. Our child was there, an invisible witness to our vows, listening under the canopy of arms and flesh and beating hearts filled with hope and fear just a foot or two above him.
I wish I could say that it was an easy journey from that point on. Maybe I don’t. I sometimes wish it could have been different. But different would mean I wouldn’t be exactly here. And here is exactly where I want to be.
Our totem continues to take shape and grow: moves, job losses, depression, celebration, promotions, deepening faith, parenthood, deaths, marriages, pets, trust, friendship, laughter.
The cross carries all of it. Allows those things that mark a life to stand upon its cross beam.
Ten years. A blip. A decade. We’re only apportioned a few, if at all.
Going forward, with the hope that there will be a few more, I want this totem of ours to hold the memories and experiences of two people, standing on the shoulders of Jesus, reaching for the stars this time. We are deeply rooted to the foundation, our roots twisted and gnarled and starting to tangle together. Immovable. Soaring.
This time, the headline reads: Love Wins.
It will be true.