My bride knew I was going to propose. She even knew I would be asking her father if he would permit me to marry her. Here’s how it went down – as far as I recall.
Her parents were visiting her sister’s home (staying there) from Florida. It was the first I’d met them, if I remember correctly. We both lived in Virginia and my bride would be spending a day shopping with her mother and sister later in the week. My plan was to selfishly divert their shopping in order to help her seek out a wedding gown. In order to do that, we visited them after work one evening. As it turned out, I had her father’s attention in the enclosed porch while the ladies were all in the house.
What I was not aware of was her mother’s pacing. My beloved had detained her mother from returning to the porch where my future father-in-law and I were hammering out whether I was fit enough a marriage prospect for his daughter. My future mother-in-law was evidently wearing a path through the kitchen and dining area in some sort of angsty behavior – and one that did not see her speaking with my bride either. Of course, this added to the suspense encountered by my better half.
What the ladies had no way to know was how long the conversation needed to be. I think I had his approval in something between 2-3 minutes while we kept discussing other business for around the next 10-20 – our ladies continued to leave us to our words.
Soon after, I went back into the house to invite the ladies back to the deck. It had begun raining, thunderstorming pretty severely. Interestingly enough, it also rained on our wedding day 5 months later. They say that’s a good sign. I’m not superstitious, but if we hadn’t been working our butts off and through the harder times in our marriage, I’d be clinging to the “good omen” that comes from a rainy wedding.
My friend Wayne Jacobsen will admit to being completely naive over what love is when he and Sarah first got married. He will admit that it only grows deeper if you continue to work on it and be united through all the struggles and challenges. And I’ll second both of these sentiments. It’ll be 17 years in about 5 minutes. She’s working her retail gig tonight and we’re celebrating tomorrow. We have a few traditions. And we include the kids. Because they’re a part of our story and it’s important that they see how we celebrate our marriage – just not everything. 😉