“Uh-huh, Uh-huh, Yo, Yo…”

Marriage.

At the beginning of this month, my wonderful niece got married. As I sat through her wedding and all the festivities, I could not get over

a) how beautiful she looked,

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and,

b) how incredibly happy she was.

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Actually, I got a little bit emotional, and I couldn’t figure out why. Perhaps it was because I knew it was a long journey for her and she wanted to make the right decision. Perhaps it was because I could see that she was sure about her decision. Perhaps it was because the white dress suited her. Perhaps it was because I knew she was going on to a wonderful new adventure.

It was mentioned that, when two people get married, you are not just starting a family, you are building a kingdom. Here’s just a small part of my parent’s kingdom at Chelsea’s wedding. Wow.

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They got married almost 50 years ago. What will Chelsea’s and Brandon’s Kingdom look like in 50 years?

So, since the party earlier this month, I have been thinking about Marriage. I’ve met some girls who think that they will only be happy once they reach their wedding date, that all their troubles will be over. That’s a nice thought, but so unrealistic.  The fact is, once you get married, you drop off your bag of “single-life troubles” and pick up a new bag: the “married-life bag”. Your troubles aren’t over, you just get new ones, different ones. But, to match those you get new joys and different joys. Just like anything else in life, it has its contrasts. It is wonderful, but it’s not the end of your troubles.

As much as I love a good “happily ever after” story, I don’t like that most of them just end with the princess getting married. It’s not the end. After the wedding, there is a whole new story to tell. It’s definitely a step towards “happily ever after”, but it certainly isn’t the end.

Today I was reminded of this: God gives us families to make us be a better version of ourselves.

And yet, since I started my own little family, I have my days where I am the worst version of myself.

The mountains and valleys I encounter seem to be higher and lower than any other part of my life. Marriage and motherhood are a refiners fire, forcing me through the worst versions of myself to find the better version. And in this refiners fire is also my husband and children for whom I am so grateful.

I’m so grateful that my hubby will still be my friend even after I’ve gotten mad at him. He knows it totally bugs me that he can crack a joke and make me laugh after I’ve been grumpy or annoyed. Sometimes I don’t like that he gets away with it (let me be grumpy why don’tcha!), but I adore him for putting up with me long enough to know that he can get a laugh out of me.

I’m so grateful that my children are so forgiving after I’ve lost my patience. They still give me a hug at the end of the day. They still want a story or to just snuggle. Somehow they have the power to create moments where they make me stop, look, and see that I’m incredibly in love with them.

Chelsea’s wedding brought out a lot of emotions in me. I’ve thought of my own journey since mine and El Jefe’s wedding date, and how absolutely wonderful and crazy it has been.

So, after these two left…

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…I was happy for them. I cried a little, because from here on out it’s a new journey towards the “happily ever after” ending. And it is such a fun and crazy adventure.

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4 responses

  1. Liz

    Laura, I couldn’t agree with you more! You’ve said all these things so beautifully, they should be published!!! Maybe I’ll just have to steal some and make little notes to myself reminding me of the truly important things in life. You know, for those days when I just feel like going back to bed and consuming massive amounts of ice cream… 🙂

    April 21, 2009 at 8:28 pm

  2. Jefe Anonymous

    Great pictures–and I really like your header. Sweet.

    oxjeff

    April 27, 2009 at 8:16 pm

  3. Mom

    Great observations Laura. Thanks for being in our family and putting up with Jeff and all the rest of us. We love you.

    May 1, 2009 at 9:04 am

  4. earwaxtasteslikecrayons

    She is beautiful. The photos are lovely–I especially like that one of Jenn looking right at the camera (I have a couple of myself like that, actually). Wise words–thanks for sharing them.

    May 12, 2009 at 3:37 pm

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