Monday, April 27, 2009

Fun Monday - Love and Marriage

As I mentioned when I proposed this theme, I have been married twice. I was married to the man I met in college for 14 years. We had 4 children together. Then he divorced me and I married again on the rebound - a man 15 years my senior and the complete opposite of my first husband. We were married for a little over a year. Since that time, I have had some short-term relationships, one long-term boyfriend, and now I am with the man who (hypothetically) is "the one". You would think I would know something about what makes a good relationship....or more to the point, what doesn't work. Obviously I don't.

It's hard for me to tell any "endearing" story about my first husband. Although I know we had to have had some good times early on, all the bad stuff that happened shortly before, during, and after our divorce has completely obliterated all memory of those sweet and poignant moments. But I do have an odd example of what I think makes a good relationship from my second marriage:

Larry and I had already decided that things were not going to work out. He knew how I felt about another divorce. The first one had been devastating and I swore it would never happen again. Larry loved me...he only wanted the best for me. But he had decided that he was not what was going to work long-term for me and my family. And I knew well enough that once Larry had made up his mind, that was it. I was heartsick but resigned.

We were sitting on the front steps of the porch in the sunshine. I had been crying for what seemed like hours. I had my head on his shoulder and he was trying to comfort me the best he could. He put his arm around me and said,"Hey, it's gonna be okay. I'll take care of you. I promise." And in that moment, I knew that he would. Yes, I was sick to my stomach, thinking of all the things I would have to do, to change, to leave to get my family back to our old lives,but I knew he cared about me. I knew he was my friend and he would take care of me as best he could. And in the next few months, he helped me repaint my house, turn on my utilities, move all our furniture and yes, held me in his arms every time I asked him to. The man I was divorcing was one of my best friends. That, to me, is part of what makes a good relationship.


That's my story. I wanted to scan a wedding picture of Larry and I but the scanner at work wasn't working.

Having written all that, I should also say this: I think honesty, trust, communication, intimacy, and fun are all important parts of a good relationship. And I am very lucky to have all of those things in the man I love.

J.

13 comments:

Molly said...

Your the tale of Larry is very moving. Maybe your marriages helped you figure out what works in a relationship. Whether you marry or not, I am glad that you have found a good man.

Thank you for hosting this week and presenting this profound topic. I have learned so much today from reading the Fun Monday reports.

Molly said...

I forgot to mention the gold bands in your picture look just like our rings. I chose not to have an engagement ring. (Diamonds are not my best friend.)

Sayre said...

I know about Larry (I've been reading for a while now, you know!) and what has happened since. I think he was a very wise man to have loved you and recognized that you needed something he didn't feel he could give. That he supported you and remained your friend through everything since says a lot about him - and you. I think he knew that a Steven would come into your life at some point, and he didn't want to be standing in your way with a vow and a ring to hold you back. You are a lucky, lucky woman to have had Larry - and Steven.

Bobbie Leigh said...

That was so touching. Divorce is one of my biggest fears- as pathetic as it sounds. But I'm glad you found the one for you and you have a lifetime of new and wonderful memories to create.

The Church Lady said...

I am so fortunate to not have experienced divorce myself. But my parents are divorced and my in-laws are divorced. I know what all of them went through and it wasn't pretty. I am happy that you have finally found the "one". You just seem to know these things in your heart. Best wishes to you.

Tookie Tail said...

Wow! I'm sure you realize what a lucky lady you are. Right? Not many can say they ever had a Larry in their life.

I'm sorry I missed all your posts from Monday. Time slipped away from me. I enjoyed reading back and catching up though.

Faye said...

Hoosier Girl, I'm glad that you have a friend in your second husband. Sometimes well-intentioned people are just not meant to be together. I see from your profile that you also love Jane Austen. She is an excellent example of that circumstance in her own personal life. I often wonder how she could write so clearly of love when the only real love in her life did not work out. All the best to you in your new relationship.

Brother Dave said...

I believe you have an understanding of relationships that many others only wish they could have.

You and Steven have worked through issues. I think you have grown emotionally.

We all wish the best for you as life goes on.

Gattina said...

You said it all in your last §. Honesty, trust communication, fun and still be able to laugh together after 40 years or more are the best recepes for a long lasting marriage !

BTW I never scan my pictures, I am not satisfied with the result. I take a picture of the photo and it comes out like new ! That's what I have done with my wedding photos. They are better then the originals !

Mariposa said...

Carrying a good friendship after ending a romantic relationship is always best for both parties...though most people would not understand how this works but I can so relate to this.

You are very right on how you ended your story with Larry and how you ended your post!

Very nice topic...LOVE it, and I'm learning from you all!

karisma said...

Larry sounds like a fantastic and very wise friend. Best wishes for your future marriage with No. 3, wishing you much love and happiness for your future together. Thanx for hosting this week. Hugs xxxx

margaret (the misanthrope) said...

Oh...J, what a sweet and touching story. You are going to think this is completely corny but I have that Whitney Houston song from "The Bodyguard" in my head now (I will always love you - that one). Thank you for sharing. Best of luck in your new relationship.

Hoosier Girl said...

Thanks everybody! My work schedule is keeping me from having any time to respond to comments, but I really appreciate all the kind words.

Have a great week!

We STILL need a volunteer for next week!

J.