In the last few months, with the wedding date ahead of us, my fiancé and I have been tumbling through a bittersweet time. There has been so much shared joy- first between the two of us. Both of us are 40 (ok, I just turned 41), and neither of us has ever been married. Although it may not be too uncommon these days for folks to wait to get married—or even not to get married at all—for us, it was never not wanting to get married—it was not having found the right person. We both feel such a sense of gratitude in having finally found each other. It was a long wait, and both of us doubted we would ever have this bond and this love in our lives.
The other joy has been sharing this time with family and friends, feeling the love and happiness pour over us. So many of our friends have been wishing this happiness for each of us—and to see them so happy for us is as touching as anything I have encountered. Our close friends knew how badly each of us wanted this happiness—this love--this wedding—this life. To share it with people who have been along with us for our journeys before this—all the heartbreaks, the career highs, the life losses—it is all so special. At our wedding shower last month, we looked around the room at all the people there, remembering all the milestones we have shared with so many. All the weddings, showers, birthdays, holidays, family additions…the list goes on. These people made our lives whole up until we met each other, and now the intermingling of everyone just makes everything complete.
The bittersweet explanation is the turmoil we have been dealing with that only a few close friends know about. We were betrayed and hurt by people we trusted…so deeply that I cannot find words to write. We continue to try and tiptoe through the daily reminders of this pain, a pain no couple should ever face in the days leading to their wedding. I have watched my fiancé hurt in a way I cannot completely heal, and I have shared his pain in a way I have never shared anything else with anyone. I worried for weeks that our wedding would be tarnished by this pain. I worried that these memories would somehow cast a shadow on everything—darken the day somehow.
Instead, we have found this new strength…knowing how good we are for each other, knowing how strong we are. We have had rough moments but have never for one second doubted one another. This test of us has almost, just almost been a blessing.
I had never doubted anything about the man I am marrying- his morals, his heart, his honesty, his simple goodness and inability to be false. But, even knowing that in my heart is strengthened by seeing it in action. This time of trouble has shown me who he is and who we are. It has let me know how we will handle a crisis. We are not perfect, not without flaws or the ability to make mistakes. But, in the end, in times that are as tough as these moments have been with the worst possible timing, I know that we can swim our way through together, picking up for each other where one leaves off, saving each other in the process.
If it is possible, I will walk down the aisle more sure than I could have imagined that I am headed in the right direction, into the arms of my best friend, my soulmate, my happiness.
I am finally at the point in my life that I believe I deserve it.
We both do.