Thursday, November 29, 2007

Scenes from a marriage

Sixteen years ago today, Jon and I got married at St. Benedict's Catholic church in Buffalo, NY. It poured rain, which everyone assured us was a sign of good luck and fertility. We did have four children, so maybe they were right.

I'm thinking of all the incidents in our marriage in which it was just the two of us, trying to get through a difficult situation--sometimes a funny situation, and sometimes not.

There was the time we installed insulation in the ceiling of our addition. Imagine cramming a futon into your joists and stapling it in place and you will know what that was like. There was the time, early in our marriage that we loaded a u-haul with all our possessions for a move to another state, and had to maneuver an entertainment center that weighed about 5,000 pounds down a long, steep narrow staircase all by ourselves. This was the first of several moves.

There was the time our dining room ceiling along with an ocean of water collapsed while we had houseguests. We closed on our first (and only) house the day before central Virginia expected the monster Hurricane Floyd. We didn't even know if we'd still have a house to move into.

There was the time Jon, replacing our toilet, got stuck in the tight space between the old toilet and the wall and I laughed and took pictures of him and then posted them on the internet.

There was the time Jon had his wisdom teeth removed, and the oral surgeon discharged him when he was barely conscious and I had to drag him to the car, and when we got home, still under the influence of the anesthesia, he ran around the house and jumped on the beds and frightened me and our two toddlers before he finally passed out.

There was the time we couldn't agree on what color to paint the living room, so I waited until he was out of town and then painted it my color all by myself.

There was the time we were stranded on the New York State thruway because Jon's car's radiator blew, and had to spend the night at a quaint inn on Lake Erie and then an entire day wandering around Northeast, PA waiting for our car to be repaired.  There was the time our newly cut Christmas tree fell off the roof of the car way out in Nelson county.

There was the death of Jon's brother, age 36 of a brain tumor, and the death of my mother, and then the death of his father, plus the deaths of many other loved ones.

There was, of course the births of all our children. Mad Scientist, the oldest--the day he was born Jon followed me around the house with a tape recorder while I threw up and tried to get away from him. Drama Queen, exactly 12 months and six days after Mad Scientist--nearly born in the car, at a railroad crossing in Kalamazoo, Michigan. Miss G, born after we'd moved back from Michigan to Buffalo, and finally Mr. McP, born here in Charlottesville in 1999.

It's these experiences that make a marriage. No matter how much you fight or irritate each other, you look back on all the ordeals you survived together and realize you really have something.


  1. Lovely, touching and funny. It's so nice that some other people looked like little kids when they got married, too.

  2. Great stories! Hope you have a very happy anniversary!

  3. Beautiful post, girl!

    I find comfort in your house-improvement stories . . . we are at Defcon Three in the Hollow. My eye has been twitching for a week straight. Phew.