Monday, June 18, 2012

When Teenagers Wed

A close family friend of mine just got engaged, and hearing her story reminded me of my own engagement stories.  Yes.  Plural.  Prepare yourselves for a good laugh, because this is ridiculous.

I met my husband when I was 15, discussing books (and everything else teenagers are wont to discuss) on an online forum hosted by an author we both liked.  It's a good thing we met so young, because now that we're adults, we no longer enjoy reading Goodkind's work through the poor prose. 

Anyway, after a week-long visit, and some teenager-y family drama on his part, Max decided to move out of New York (where he lived) to Colorado (where I lived).  We had known each other for 6 months, spent 7 days together, and he came 2000 miles with a backpack, a rolling bag with "I PWN" written in duct tape on the back and an XBOX in the mail to himself.  It's funny that out of all of the possessions he had to his name, his gaming console was the most important, too important to leave behind when moving across the country.  That should have tipped me off as to how he would want to spend most of his time, but love is blind.  The plan was for him to find an apartment and stay with my family in the mean time.

Two whole days later (so a grand total of nine days together), I asked him to marry me at 6:00 in the morning while we were watching Winnie the Pooh.  I got up 30 minutes early for school so that I could watch with him and have a little bit of time without my mother or siblings being annoying and telling us to chill with the PDA.  I was only 16 and he was only 18, so we decided not to tell anyone we planned to get married until much later to avoid the freak-outs.

Making the engagement official was a little different.  A year and a few months later, on a really, really cold November morning while I was driving him to work, he asked me to marry him.  In a gas station parking lot.  He had bought a cheap ring at Walmart (which turned my finger black and has since been replaced), and I had said I wanted to be surprised.  The fact that he thought "least opportune moment" = "surprise!" should have tipped me off to how sweepingly romantic he could be.  But, alas, again, love is blind.

I said yes.  We announced it.  People still freaked out.  One of my uncles told me I needed to be with at least a dozen guys before I had any idea who I wanted to spend my life with.  My peers in high school told me we'd never last.  We got married when I was 18 (almost 19) and he was 21, 3 years after becoming a pair.

This kiss lasted so long (in retribution for me claiming that Max would be embarrassed to kiss me in public) the good Reverend Simmons told us to cut it out

And despite the hilarious ineptitude of the whole thing, 5 1/2 years after the hilariously disastrous wedding (where my mother got a speeding ticket in sight of the ceremony location and Max and I both had to suppress coughing to take our vows), I wouldn't take it back.  We are (read: he is) still romantically inept, still awkward, still learning to accommodate each other and live together peacefully.  There are ups and downs, but I think I speak for us both when I say we're not sorry, and we told you so, Uncle Bob.


  1. LIKE...
    I'm so glad I was there for the wedding... loved the cesspool cake, especially (and the picture I have of not a single person looking at the camera).
    I knew you guys would work out... you are a woman of conviction. I think it is a wonder that anyone could be so committed, in fact. I admire you, because I don't understand the desire to be with one person forever at all. You are one lucky lady...

  2. The cesspool cake! Yes!

    I don 't understand the desire to be with one person either lol. It seems to run in opposition to what is natural to humans and what is best for our genetic diversity. I think it's mostly a construct of our civilization, an expectation we place on ourselves. But it feels so natural to me. I'm confused by people wondering "Hmm, is this person right for my forever partner?" It seemed so black and white to me. I think that in order to make a forever relationship work you have to want family and stability. I gave up adventure and excitement for continuity and a smooth ebb and flow. My life is easy and certain. And because I respect, care for and enjoy being around Max (which is what most psychologists call "mature love"), and wanted family and stability, it works for us. And modern society doesn't really work without that kind of stability on one level or another, which makes it valuable, I suppose.

    Rambling. But this is the one place I consider myself free to ramble without consequences, so suck it up lol.