So today’s our wedding anniversary, 13 years today we got married at the Bougainvillea Beach Resort in Barbados
Craig will tell anyone who’ll listen that he asked me three times to marry him, I didn’t see the point, we’d already been together for 7 years, I mean why spoil things!
Anyway we’d booked a holiday to Barbados, and he said, this is the last time I’m going to ask but they do weddings there. Oh, ok, if it’ll make you happy.
So that’s what happened we arrived in Barbados on the Monday and on the Friday we got married, just us, the two girls, and a work colleague of Craig’s and his mum, who happened to be there at the same time were witnesses.
On that day, at that time, in no way did I ever envisage that at any point in the future we would be doing this, here, on such an adventure.
So what is a marriage, is it just a piece of paper binding you together, I mean you can get divorced these days quicker than it takes to arrange a wedding! Does it really change anything?
The google definition of marriage is
‘the legally or formally recognized union of two people as partners in a personal relationship (historically and in some jurisdictions specifically a union between a man and a woman’
Now that’s hardly romantic is it.
But we’ve made it this far, so clearly the legal union in this case is working. Why is that?
I’m not the easiest person in the world to have any sort of relationship with, I’m a crap friend as my friend Lisa would testify to. I say I’ll ring and I don’t and then time passes by, and then more time to the point where so much time has passed by I’m embarrassed to ring. But when I do, even if it’s 12 months after I said I’ll ring things are like nothing’s changed and no time has passed at all. We just pick up where we left off.
I don’t suffer fools, as anyone who has ever worked with me would testify to. I remember telling a work colleague once when he wanted something done that ‘this isn’t a crèche’. He thought that was hilarious for years after.
I’m, well I’m a lot of things, good and bad, aren’t we all, nobody’s perfect. And yet despite this, Craig and I have made our marriage work and to be perfectly honest it hasn’t been difficult to make it work. There’s no magic formula.
Yes we’ve had highs and lows, more than even the people closest to us will ever know. But they weren’t relationship highs and lows, they were caused by outside influences – financial, health, work in Craig’s case. Yet through all of this we were stronger as a team than we were individually, we were, and still are more than a legal union, we are united.
So what is a marriage, well for me a marriage, well a relationship is:
1. Learning to live with your other half’s snoring, even if you have to take the action of wearing earplugs.
2. Being prepared to listen at the of the day when the work frustrations are bucket dumped and learning to nod in agreement – yes you are surrounded by idiots dear.
3. Being prepared to say when the work frustrations become intolerable ‘hand your notice in’ and then being prepared for what follows when they take your advice for what seems the first time! Yes but did this have to be the time you chose to listen to me,
4. Accepting that you don’t have to do things on your own, it is ok to share.
5. Laughing and crying, but mainly laughing – we laugh a lot, and not just at each other!
6. Communication is key – how many times have you seen that on a PowerPoint presentation, but it’s true, sharing your hopes and dreams is a step towards reaching them. ‘I’m not bloody psychic’ was a phrase used quite often in our household.
Ooh it’s getting a bit serious now, lets lighten it up a bit.
7. Realising your other half hates cooking, (me) and that if you want to eat, well you’re just going to have to cook it yourself (but hey as you’re making it I may as well have some as well)
8. Learning to enjoy the thing your partner enjoys – yes it is possible to sit and watch Moto GP all day. And learning that the way to get through the days when Moto GP, World Superbike and BSB are all on, is just to throw yourself into it. And then be prepared that yes the day will come when you can recognise the riders by their voices, not just their faces. And then be prepared for the ‘See I knew you were getting into it’. Yes dear.
9. Not being surprised when you start thinking the same thing, at the same time, and can actually finish the others sentence.
10. Seeing them react to something or someone and be able to tell exactly what they’re thinking.
11. Realising that despite the highs and lows, the hardships and the heartache, if you were given the chance to go back you wouldn’t change any of it. The highs and lows make you who you are as an individual and as a couple, learn by them, don’t make the same mistakes twice and stay united.
We’ve still got time on our side to make another 13 years, but how different these will be, the hard work has brought us here today. Yes there will be highs and lows, but I’m sure mostly highs, and well if the lows get too bad I’m sure one of us will just banish the other to the dinghy and get towed behind the boat!