Friday, August 12, 2011

Marriage-A Celebration

Tonight, I learned that my cousin Courtney got engaged to the love of her life. I am so excited for her! (I actually knew this was going to happen since her mom told my mom who then told me; it's been a long week of waiting to hear when we could all start shouting from the rooftops.) Courtney and I have a lot in common--mainly our love of shopping and accessorizing. Her mom, my Aunt Evelyn, always says she blames me for how Courtney turned out. It's one of the best compliments I've ever received. We have shared some really great times together, Courtney and I, and she even opted to have me and our moms go with her on a cruise for her senior trip instead of traveling with her friends. Since I'm my parents' youngest child, I've always kind of pretended Courtney was my little sister--someone I could love and look after--a way to pay forward all of the love I have received from my big sister. And now Courtney is getting ready to be a married lady!

When someone gets engaged and has a wedding, I think these public displays should call all of us married folk to reflect on our marriages. So of course, my wheels have been turning about Jeffrey and me over the years all night!

My marriage is the aspect of my life of which I am most proud. (For now, motherhood is a close second but only because I'm still so new at it and still ironing out the kinks.) Just yesterday, a colleague of ours came up to me and said, "I saw your husband today and was telling him 'I just love Jessica,' and he just looked at me and said, 'I love her too.'" Needless to say, my heart just smiled--mostly because my husband loves me without reserve but also a tiny bit because it's nice to know my wit, charm, and unconventional good looks also pay off at work.

I really believe God put Jeffrey and me together mainly because we would be too oblivious to do it ourselves. We had known each other a couple of years and didn't think a thing about the other, and then one night, it happened. On the record, we say we don't really know what ignited the whole relationship, but off the record, I know Jeffrey saw me in that black Size 6 halter dress (I sure miss those days) doing one of my infamous impersonations of the Huddle House bouncer yelling at Ole Miss frat boys and said to himself, "In Jones County, we call that a catch so time to reel her in!"

However we ended up together, I'm sure glad it happened. Since those Ole Miss days of courting that led to me walking down the aisle, we've only grown to love each other more. (Of course, with our love story initially starting at the Huddle House, we could only go up.)

In the seven years we've been together, we have shared some truly joyous occasions. We drove to Canada, saw several awesome rock concerts including No Doubt and Bon Jovi, purchased our dream home, but one of the best days of both of our lives was the day we found out I was pregnant with our first child. The joy we both felt left us speechless and we just stood in our bedroom just outside the bathroom door holding each other up since we both felt like we were going to collapse.

But just as marriage brings about many calls for celebration, the tragedies that plague it, unfortunately prove inevitable. The same indescribable joy we felt over learning we would become parents was quickly taken away from us when I miscarried three days later. We will never understand why it happened, and it doesn't matter if we know the reason since no answer will ever be good enough. Through all of the crying, screaming, hitting walls, and pulling over on the sides of roads, God saw to it that we grieved together. As individuals, we became stronger people; Jeffrey concentrated on his music and joined a rock band while I took up running. As a couple, we chose to celebrate life. We went to hear bands, stayed out late on weekends, ate good food, and traveled some more. Because of that tragedy, we saw even clearer what we meant to each other and we celebrated, and we have an even more solid partnership than ever before.

Even with Jude finally here, we will always feel that loss. As I've said in a previous post, I don't want to forget and neither does Jeffrey. Forgetting that horrific moment would also mean ignoring that incredible joy, and that's something no one can take away.

All married couples will experience joy, but they will also face tragedy. However, those tragedies prove necessary in order to really feel that happiness and see what they're made of. Since my marriage is my greatest accomplishment, I've been praying for Jude's wife since I was pregnant with him. I plan to write a post in the near future going into more detail about this. Even though this particular post doesn't fit the theme of this blog (a blog about me and my baby), I plan on Jude reading this when he's older and I want him to know, just in case he ever has doubts, how much his parents love each other and how wanted he is.

The way Jeffrey and I love is not for everyone (because really, could every wife out there handle a husband's undying fascination with Sci-fi and the band Rush? I think not.) However, everyone aspires to have those kinds of feelings for his/her spouse that Jeffrey and I have for each other. I wish Courtney and Matt all the best with their upcoming marriage. May they always know what they mean to each other and grow to love each other more with every passing day.


Anonymous said...

OMG Jess.. this is too sweet! After yesterday's proposal I thought I was done with the waterworks for a while but this proved me wrong! Thanks for being the best cousin a girl could have! I am truly blessed... and thankfully you are to blame for the way I turned out but I wouldn't want to be like anyone else! p.s. had to put anonymous b/c i couldn't figure out how to leave a name. luckily, you're smart so i'm sure you know it's your baby keana that commented

Sarah said...

This is a lovely post Jess!