Thursday, March 18, 2010
This week, Flashback Friday is a sort of special one for us. Today is mine and Christopher's 4th wedding anniversary. You might have noticed last week that we've put a temporary yet possibly permanent hold on themes, so if you'll be playing along, please feel free to post whatever old photo you'd like. But for us...
4 years ago today, Christopher and I were on the Oregon Coast, walking through the cold sand with bare feet, hearts pounding as hard as they were the first time we kissed, hand in hand, looking into each other eyes with both love and fear, saying "I do".
We had a last minute wedding, not at all like the wedding that I dreamt about as a little girl. We were pregnant with our first child, and Christopher was about to leave to join the Air Force. We needed to be married before he left, so we used what we had. I wore an old polka dot party dress (the same dress that I wore earlier that year on my 21st birthday), Christopher wore a vintage powder blue suit over the top of a shark attack shirt, we painted our names and the date on rocks to toss into the ocean, and surrounded by the few friends and family that had the ability to rush out the door without having much notice- we married.
While Christopher and company stood out on the windy beach patiently, my Dad and I stayed behind on the boardwalk. We sat on a bench so far away from everybody that we could barely make out their bodies as tiny dots in the distance. I was cold and shivering, my dad gave me his jacket. This was the last time that I would ever truly be Daddys Little Girl. He was about to hand me over, and I know it wasn't easy for him, to the man that would take care of me from here on out. This would be the last time that my dad and I would share the same last name. We didn't talk about anything in particular, while making everyone down in the sand wonder if they'd be attending a wedding or a breakup, we mostly just made little jokes to distract us from the sadness that we both felt so heavily. This was our goodbye. We both knew, but I think he must have known much more than I did, that our relationship would never be the same.
After tears of love and nostalgia were shed, I handed him back his jacket (it smelt just like him), gave him a hug, took his arm, and tugged him in the direction of our ceremony. The sadness was swept away with the next breeze, and before I knew it, all I could see in front of me was my husband and the ocean.
It wasn't until our minister started talking, that I realized how real all of this was becoming. I started choking on my tears, in front of everybody. I remember feeling embarrassed and wishing Christopher and I could just turn around and dive into the ocean together. My eyeliner started to smudge at the corners and dribbled down past my eyelashes. The minister, who was also crying after only speaking a few words, reached out and handed me a tissue that she had been holding the whole time, knowing I'd be overcome with emotion.
I don't remember anything she said. I don't remember the words, I don't remember the sounds of the crashing waves- nothing. I remember when Christopher reached over with one hand to grab mine, and then put the other hand down on my belly, as if to remind me of why we were standing there in the first place. I waited, and just kept waiting, and waited- to hear her seal it. I needed her to tell me that he was my husband, and I was his wife.
And then she did.
We, and everybody else there with us, picked a rock out of the basket, and walked down into the water, closed our eyes and made wishes for our future, and then threw them into the unknown, hoping they'd all come true.
And so far they have.
Happy Anniversary honey...