It certainly is not a story that fairy tales are made of. It did not start out with a fancy proposal or an excited bride. I remember my father asking me on the day that I was getting married if I was excited. I answered him that it was something that had to be done. I am hoping most brides do not walk into a marriage with that kind of attitude.
As sad as the beginning of my story is, I don't think of it in that way. To me, it is a story of God's amazing redemption. A story of His faithfulness to us when we choose to be faithful to Him. A story of God taking something broken and when placed in His hands, made beautiful. That is the story of my marriage.
Today marks 25 years since the day that I became Alan's wife. It was a decision made because we were having a baby and thought that we would like that baby to have both parents together to raise her. We walked into that decision with very little thought (although we had been dating for two and half years) and maybe no prayer. We discussed with our parents when we would get married and I can remember sitting there and saying we had something to do the following weekend, so we made it for two weeks away. (Even as I write this, I can not believe this!!!)
I do not encourage anyone to go into MARRIAGE with such little thought. However, although we went into a marriage as two 18 year-olds who were totally not ready to be married, we did have one thing going for us. We were dedicated. Once we took those vows, we were dedicated that we would stick with them until the end. I have to tell you when you are 18 at the beginning of the marriage, the end can seem very, very far away;) We had a long, long road to walk together. Alan and I decided to sink our teeth in, figure things out and be dedicated to making our marriage work.
I have to be fair and say that even though I was not excited about getting married or ready to get married, Alan knew he was supposed to be married to me. He did not have the same reservations that I did. He knew everything would work out. We had discussed the possibility of marriage in the near future many, many times. He had told me that he would either marry me, or he would never marry.
When I look back and think of all the mountains and valleys that Alan and I have journeyed together, I just stand in awe. I said at the beginning of this post, that this story was not what fairy tales are made of and yet I am so very proud of our story. I am so blessed with a husband who has loved me for most of my life. I married a boy and he turned into a man that I am so pleased to call my husband (or more commonly, "my man";)
God knew when that scared, scarred and unsure 18-year-old girl squeezed in through the back door with her Dad (we were not allowed to walk down the aisle) that she was making the right choice. He knew that there would be dark days, but He knew He would equip her to deal with the challenges He set before her.
You have to excuse me today. There is certainly an amount of pride that I feel today. When you become one of "the teenage parents" in a "teenage marriage", you know that odds are against you. Quite frankly, I am positive there were people who whispered how long they thought our marriage would last. I am so thankful to my God and my husband for being with me through these last 25 years. I am so blessed to be able to say that I have not just endured 25 years of marriage, but it has been the best! What an amazing God we have who takes the tattered and torn and makes them into something beautiful.
Happy Anniversary to the love of my life!