For Andy

Although our anniversary isn’t until the 15th, we’re heading back to the mountains tomorrow to look at some real estate and see if there’s a weekend getaway home in our future.  As you know, the connectivity up there isn’t perfect, so I’m posting this early.

We met because of children, had children of our own and have held onto our own immaturity for more than twenty years.  Tess and Amanda –  two of the most edible four-year olds in the universe became friends, their moms (our sisters) started talking about their siblings and a blind date (did I tell you I swore I would never go on a blind date, marry again, or risk more than required by serial monogamy?).  We met at the harbor in Georgetown (I was waiting inside so I could see him before he could see me – moi?  self protective?).  I walked up to him and say “Hi, it’s me”.  Andy insists he knew right away.  I just knew he was very cute and interviewed me more thoroughly than any candidate I had ever spoken with in my HR career.  Before we were done with drinks, he had gone through his checklist; I was just getting giddy.  I was being interviewed!  And I laughed – a lot.  I still am.

Andy made plans – not just namby-pamby plans – concerts, trips to B&Bs, romantic restaurants.  I was blown away.  His generosity was unequivocal; he took notes the first time I was upset because he wanted to make sure he heard all I was saying.  Honestly?  That did it for me.  No one had ever tried to listen that hard.  Ironically, it’s not his strong point – but a lot is forgiven when you realize that this is the only person in the world who is going to make sense for you.

In twenty-one years you don’t have a tale that just offers giggles.  We’ve had our share of challenges, distances and silences, days of doubt and frustration.  Loss and anger, fear and uncertainty.  My health issues have certainly thrown us for a loop on occasion.  Me with my sneakers;  Andy with his games.  I read and escape in books;  Andy plays pinball and darts.  I was a parent driven by the word ‘yes’;  Andy needed reasons to answer in the affirmative.  I’m always early; he’s always late.  We can make each other crazy and we will always have each other’s back.  I have said before that he is the anchor to my kite – my tendency to fly away is far less precarious knowing that he is holding the string while he waits for me to come back to earth – so I will never get stuck somewhere from which I can’t return.

photo

So after twenty-one years – which have flown in more ways than they have crept, I am beyond grateful and acutely aware of blessings, as corny as that may sound.  I looked at him this morning and thought “my guy” – a thought I have had on more mornings than not.  I’m still having  a pajama party with my best friend – even if we are on different sleep schedules.  We played impromptu charades in the driveway yesterday and ended up in hysterics.  Whatever he maintains he knew  when we first met, I was slower to embrace.  But there is no doubt that we were brought together by familial love and have grown together with a bond that is cherished – both for its fragility and unbreakability.  It’s a wonderful life, and a wonderful love.  I love you Andy…

 

And One For Good Luck..

Twenty years ago tomorrow, Andy and I will celebrate twenty years of marriage.  Given that neither one of us got this right the first time (with an exemption for our kids), this seems like a staggeringly long time.  And yet, time is fickle – for it also seems like yesterday.  Yesterday when I broke out in hives an hour before the wedding,  scared out of my mind about what we were about to do.  Could we do this right?  Would our children be ok?   My mother patting foundation all over my hyper-ventilating chest, Andy coming up to my parents’ bedroom to remind me that all was going to be more than fine.  He was right.

Twenty years since I walked through my parents’ backyard, meeting Andy under my grandfather’s prayer shawl – held high by four poles – one held by his parents, another by my mom and dad,  and our two sisters holding the remaining two.  Our three boys and three nieces crowding around us as the rabbi began to speak (“Mommy, I want cake…is it time for cake yet?”  “You’re gonna be my aunt now”  “Stop pushing me”  “Cake?”)…One little boy holding on to the sash of my dress, another grabbing a leg and the littlest rubbing his nose and making little sneezes.  And Andy looking at me with more love than I had ever known, handsome, confident enough for the whole lot of us as we moved forward into this new life.  I got stuck on my vows and the rabbi stopped to remind me that “we’re all here with you Mimi”…I nodded that I knew, but all that mattered was that Andy knew.  And when he later said that the five of us were all getting married, you could hear the one child sigh “Oh brother”…We kissed through our laughter;  Andy held the back of my head with one hand, and held me up with the other.

The rain stopped long enough for the ceremony and the party – the skies re-opened as everyone left.  They say that’s a good omen.  I have no idea if that’s true or not.  What I do believe, is that which the rabbi reminded us under the chuppah – we are not lucky, we are blessed.  And though he lets me keep my sneakers in the garage, and the contract under constant re-write, there’s nowhere to go without Andy.  I am more sure of this today than I was twenty years ago.  We have created history – some which I’m sure we recall with sorrow – most of which we can remember with pride and laughter.  And twenty years from now?  He’ll still be my anchor and I’ll be his kite.

We danced to this song twenty years ago, and though we’re hardly Fred and Ginger (probably more like Fred and Wilma), I don’t remember my feet touching the ground..I love you big guy..