Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Spring Break 1987

I have been married to David for 25 years today.  While my classmates head to South Padre Island for Spring Break, I am at a church in Arlington, Texas, saying my vows.  We were so young.  I was barely 18 and still in high school.  He was 21.  We thought we knew everything.

This was taken in the evening after our wedding.  Who are those people?

I wonder if anyone really believes that when they say for better or worse, richer or poorer, in sickness and in health, that the dark side will ever happen.  When you are young and happy and, certainly in my case naive, you don't think things will ever be worse, you don't think you will care about poorer and no one will ever be that sick.  Now I know all of those things will be true, along with a lot of others they don't even mention:  heavier, sadder, less sensitive, meaner, more selfish, and immature, to name a few.

But you also cannot know that the valleys, however deep and wide they seem, will be offset by some pretty spectacular peaks.  Times of laughter, fun, happiness, adventure and closeness.  Times of greatness. 

I want to share how it all began.  Just think about all of the ways you could have missed that person and how differently it might have turned out.  If I had stayed home.  If he had stayed home.  If he had not taken his date home.

That's right, David was on a date.  I was there with my parents and a friend from school.  "There" is the VFW (Veteran's of Foreign Wars)Hall  #8561.  My dad sings with a band, David's cousin is the bass player.  This is my first time to go along.

That's my dad singing a George Jones song with Alan in the background.

I notice a big group of older kids when my friend and I go to the ladies room but that is it, I notice them.  I am not really interested in boys yet...I am only 14 years old, in the summer break between 8th and 9th grade.  I have never been on a date and have never even asked my parents about dating.  Also, I am the "ugly friend" and accustomed to my friend getting all of the attention from any boy that might be around.
I dance with my dad and when the song ends I follow him off the floor. This person steps in front of me and says something like, "Do you want to dance later?".  I think I say, "Okay" or something equally flirtatious like that.  He moves and I go sit down.  Later, he does ask me to dance.  I still remember the look on his face when he asks how old I am.  Shock.  When you are 5' 10" at 14, people always assume you are older than you are.

He asks me on a date anyway, even asks my parents if it is okay.  So I go and so it begins.  I doubt my parents could have, even in their wildest imaginings, predicted where we would end up a few short years later.  Saying vows in the front of a church during Spring Break of my senior year of high school.  Best Spring Break ever.

I wonder what my mom is thinking while this picture is being taken. 
Nope, probably better that I don't know.

 I didn't know until years later that he was on a date that night and that, after spotting me, he took his date home early.  I am sorry for that girl who probably had hurt feelings.  She had to go home for me to have this life.  This wonderfully difficult, terribly happy, unbelievably fortunate life.  I hope somewhere out there, she found the same.

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