My life event
Facebook calls this a “life event”. As in, “Henry Smith likes your life event.”
There are other ways you could describe it, too, like “What are you guys even doing?” and “I thought this already happened ages ago?”
I think I will choose to call it, “This dude is just right for me.”
I’ve been married before. It wasn’t even a bad marriage, really, but I was 21 when it started and 24 when it ended and it feels like a hundred lifetimes ago (except for all those times my ex-husband is in my house, shouting at everything). I got married at a fancy Catholic altar in a white dress and our guests had alternating main courses. The fact that I loathed Catholicism, couldn’t think of more than six people I wanted to invite and, let’s be frank, wasn’t convinced about my fiance mattered naught, because that was not my wedding. That wedding was for the people in my life who thought it was improper to have a baby and no husband. We had known each other 18 months, and our daughter was 5 months old.
Thanks, those people. You made sure I had Lily, and that is a good enough reason to be separated before you turn 25.
People ask me why I would want to get married again, and aren’t I jaded, and don’t I know better now? I suppose they can’t understand why, having failed dismally as a wife once before, I would subject any poor bastard to that process again.
I know. What a ridiculous concept. Using a construct of the government to express feelings that everyone knows are just a chemical reaction probably to pheromones.
Gaz and I have been together for six years, and in those six years we have experienced pretty well every chemical reaction/feeling that can be experienced by people in a relationship.
Some of those feelings I have explored in words in so much depth that they are someone else’s feelings now: a metal bed with a hole at the crotch; watching High School Musical in an emergency room while our child died; the groggy relief of a decision made. Those were the years in which we tortured each other with our intense and immovable passion but also total conflict in all matters of the heart.
Some of the feelings have faded with the passing of time: discovering the other’s mental illness; fucking by the sea; smoking in the same beer garden week after week. These are parts of our history that are so old that they make up the fabric of our time together, mostly unseen in corners and under dirty sheets.
Some of the feelings are newer and cleaner: comfort in the familiar smell of soil and tree sap; a warm hand flat on my back; a shared sadness over something for which we both grieve.
I love this man with a ferocity that I know terrifies him, and probably his friends and family. The things that mattered in the beginning are not the things that matter now. I am not angry or tired. I am not isolated or alone. Instead of an enemy, someone who hurt me before, I have a friend in my life veteran. Someone who also didn’t understand, and did what was best at the time. Someone with whom I can occasionally reflect and wonder how it might have turned out differently, but also feel the solid form of support next to me.
This is a man who heads into the blackness with me and brings me through with just the right balance of sympathy and insistence. This is a man who finds me when I am at my most absolute chaotic worst and looks into my face until he finds me again and then tells me, “There you are, beautiful girl.” and then there I am.