For Better and For Worse

~"The choice to follow love through to its completion is the choice to seek completion within ourselves. The point at which we shut down on others is the point at which we shut down on life. We heal as we heal others, and we heal others by extending our perceptions past their weaknesses. Until we have seen someone's darkness, we don't really know who that person is. Until we have forgiven someone's darkness, we don't really know what love is. Forgiving others is the only way to forgive ourselves, and forgiveness is our greatest need."

- Marianne Williamson

Eleven years ago, my husband and I made a mistake. We got married. We really shouldn't have (we both had our issues), but you know... fools rush in and all that.

After that, we compounded our impulsive decision by adding more kids (I already had two) and a mortgage. The kids were a blessing, but the house... oh, the house. I often wonder how our lives might have been different if we would have been more patient and not tried to keep up with The (other) Joneses.

We went back and forth so many times. Separation was hard on us. And then one day, it wasn't. I went back and forth from hating him to loving him. Then one day, I felt nothing. My feelings toward him were, for the most part, neutral. I began a new life, as did he. We were both finally seeing our hard work come to fruition. We even began dating other people. Why not? We were pretty much divorced. Just not officially.

When we were just a couple of months away from finalizing our divorce, something crazy happened. We got back together. This time, for good.

It's so hard to explain how it all came about. I used to pray that God would soften his heart to make things easier through our divorce process. Well, his heart did soften. I guess mine did, too. He finally agreed to go to counseling. There, with a neutral party, we shared our feelings and concerns... and fears.

We talked about officially divorcing (since we'd already racked up all those legal fees) and starting off with a new marriage... a new date to celebrate. But a wise friend reminded me that it's so important to celebrate the whole thing... the good, the bad, the better and the worse.

Today, we celebrate it all. From the first mistake to the eleven years of learning and growing, separations, reunions... and healing.

Our past and our future.

Happy Anniversary, Larry. I love you.