Today marks the 23rd anniversary of our wedding. Twenty three years ago, on a brutally hot day in Bloomington, Indiana, I walked down the aisle into a diferent life. What began as a blind date, yes, a blind date, turned into a small, rather casual wedding ceremony joining us in holy matrimony.
I was 27 years old and he was 34 years old in the summer of 1982. He was living in New Orleans and working in the oil drilling industry both in the Gulf of Mexico and overseas. I lived in Bloomington, Indiana and worked in an office. He was born and raised in Bloomington, choosing to move south to begin a new life after the death of his first wife and their brief marriage. I was born and raised in the deep South but with bona fide Yankee parents, Hoosiers, more specifically. After the death of my father, my mother moved back to her hometown to be with her siblings and my sisters and I moved with her. I was there for long enough by then to know I wanted to move back down south when it was possible. I was enjoying my life as a young, working woman. My future husband was enjoying his life as a 30 something bachelor in the Big Easy. He was living in the Uptown section of New Orleans.
Our mothers were working together in the antique business. They each owned their own shops and would join together on weekends to travel out of town to do antique shows in the midwest and the south. My future mother in law, thinking it was time for her older son to settle back down, gave him my phone number and told him to call me. He did. So, in the summer of 1982, we met for lunch at a hamburger joint in the vicinity of the Indiana University campus while he was home visiting his parents.
We have been together since.
We were married in a Saturday afternoon ceremony in the Unitarian-Universalist Church of Bloomington by a lovely lady minister by the name of Laurel. I think that is quite a pretty name. We attended that church, even though we were both raised in the Presbyterian church. We just liked it. And Laurel. We paid for our own wedding and have been doing things on our own ever since. Not a bad way to go.
In our now twenty three years of marriage we have lived in a few places together. Upon meeting my future husband an old college roommate told me that my life would never be boring. She was right. She also now shares a birthday with our son. Life is wierd like that.
We moved from Bloomington to Lafayette, Louisiana. See, I told you the south was in my future. We thought Lafayette would be a better place than New Orleans to raise a family. We like being closer in to a city than to be in a suburb outside a city and at that time New Orleans was not a very family friendly kind of town. It was experiencing a downturn economically, mostly due to oil company downturns, and Lafayette offered a better way of life. We purchased our first home together in December 1985. Three months later we were moving to Dallas. The downturn of the oil industry of the mid 80's hit us and we had to move for hubby to get a job. My uncle there got him something to keep us afloat. We kept the house in Lafayette with the intention of moving back as soon as we could. We did two years later. We lived there for 10 years with a brief intermission of a move to Venezuela. Hubby was there about a year, baby son and I were there about 6 months. We purchased our second home in Lafayette and life was good. Another oil industry downturn in the mid 90's and we moved to Houston. First to a suburb north of the city for one year then into the city. We purchased this house in 1999 and have been here since.
Life is not boring.
Our son was born in September 1989 in Lafayette. He is proud to say he is a native of Cajun country. He was my inspiration to get involved with three women in Lafayette trying to open a Children's Museum. After working with them on a volunteer basis for 3 years, the museum was opened and I was on the original museum staff.
A fact of life within my marriage is that my husband is gone at least half of the time. Living in Houston, and in Lafayette for that matter, my life is no different than many other families that we know. Our lifestyle, while unusual to those not sharing it, is not odd to us. I look at it this way - I have the best of both worlds. I have always been a very independent sort of gal and it works for us.
Today, on our anniversary, hubby is out of the country. He has missed more anniversaries, birthdays and holidays than he has been home for. I'll open a bottle of champagne chilling in the fridge and be quite content.
It's all good.
"Marriage is the triumph of imagination over intelligence." - Oscar Wilde