I take great joy in observing life. I spend a lot of time pondering my observations. So, one day I thought I would write them down. These are my ponderings. -dana

Monday, August 20, 2012

Getting hitched.

I was twenty-two years old when I got married.

Thirty years ago tomorrow.

It was 1982.  It was a time so different from now.  

Before Todd would ask me to marry him, he would ask my dad--a gesture that is somewhat out of fashion these days.  I guess it wasn't as much for permission as it was for a blessing from the man that up until that time had been the most important man in my life.

Next, came the engagement ring.  I didn't pick mine out.  He did.  It was a surprise--just the way I had hoped it would be.  It was yellow gold and a marquise cut. It was perfect and I said yes!  

The dress I chose was long-sleeved.  Wedding dresses were a bit more modest in the 80's.    

We chose our wedding date to squeeze in right before Todd would start his last year of college.  Did I always dream of an August wedding?  I don't know, but it was practical!  The end of August in West Texas...the land of beautiful sunsets!

The wedding was at a beautiful church with a center aisle.  My colors were jade green and mauve.  Don't judge.  Todd's tux and shoes were white.  Again, don't judge.  The song that everyone had played at their wedding in the early 80's was "The Wedding Song".  I went non-traditional.  My dad walked me down the aisle to "Oh Danny Boy"--it was a surprise to him because it was his favorite song.  My best friend's dad married us and our siblings stood beside us.   As was the trend of the day, the whole beautiful ceremony was captured on cassette tape for years of listening pleasure--or until the tape disintegrated.

Our reception was held in the church fellowship hall, as was the case with the weddings of most of my friends.  No sit-down dinner for a couple of hundred.  Just a little punch, a bride's cake, groom's cake, mixed nuts,  pastel mints, monogrammed jade green napkins  and BOOM!  We had ourselves a reception!  It was at a Methodist Church, so I guess technically we could have had a dance.  But we didn't.  Short and sweet and off we went into our future! 

Hook 'em horns then.  Hook 'em horns now.

We had only a few days for a honeymoon, so San Antonio was our destination.  Our first night there, we enjoyed a wonderful dinner at the restaurant on the top floor of the Hyatt hotel.  It was Italian.  We ordered the special.  In our little world, the "special" was usually reasonably priced.  We learned that in the real world one is actually charged extra for the "specialness"!   We were just two giddy kids who were trying to act grown up because we had a marriage license that said we could.  The $80 tab blew our cover though,  and resulted in us cutting our stay short a night!  

There were no computers on which to post our young love and wedded bliss as a facebook status update for people we didn't even know to see.   There were no cell phones to take Instagram wedding pictures with the "1977" retro application...(I still don't get how 1977 can be retro??)   There was just me and this guy with the most incredible, tender blue eyes, who I had just vowed to call my husband for the rest of my life.

And just like that, thirty years have come and gone. We grew up together through trial and error. Celebrations and sadness.  Three bundles of joy that grew into three amazing big people.  Happy times and hard times.  Chaotic times and peaceful times.  Laughter and tears.  Thirty years that even knowing all that I know now, I still want "overs".    The joys have been so magnificent that I would willingly go through life's inevitable miseries again just to have a second go-round with them.

So here it is.  This is what I believe to be true of marriage.  I really hope my children read this.  There is no such thing as a perfect marriage.  There is, however, such a thing as a perfect commitment to love someone for life.  That is a commitment we made 30 years ago.  No matter what. This commitment has been perfected every time the world said "If I were you I'd quit" and we didn't.  Every time the world said "compromise" and we wouldn't.  Every time one of us wanted to pull away and the other held tight.  Every time one of us said "I'm not strong enough" and the other said "I'll be strong enough for both of us".   God only knows the exact number of years I will be blessed to keep this perfect commitment.  But this I know.  It won't be enough.

Happy 30th Anniversary to my sweet Todd.  Mountains may crumble and oceans run dry, but you and I will be alright. I love you.

Oh goodness. Those eyes.


  1. Sweet, sweet, sweet. God bless you both! I hope your kids read it too, Dana. What a legacy!

  2. Oh my. Absolutely love this. You summed up marriage perfectly.

    I remember you and Todd way back then! :-)