A few days ago I was thinking about Princess Dianna’s wedding. Why, I couldn’t tell you, but this memory certainly took me back. Back to a time just before I got married, when love was in the air and hope sprang eternal. This was long before the crush of disappointment and heartbreak grabbed me and my marriage by the throat, refusing to let go. But I digress…
The morning of the Royal Wedding, my then-fiancé and I awoke at an ungodly hour to watch the entire spectacle on TV, as did millions of people around the world. This made me feel like a part of something bigger than myself; like I belonged to a worldwide community that was embracing true love in all its unfettered glory. It made me realize how each of us thirsts for love and its transformational powers. And it made me believe that people really do fall in love for good and all, which made me happy as a little clam (that is, a clam who doesn’t realize that soon she’ll be headed straight for her own personal clambake). Unfortunately, when it came to my own trip down the aisle, I was not so lucky. I mean, the aisle itself was lovely and my wedding day was sublime. But my marriage? Not so much.
Unlike my ex and myself, I do know many couples who enjoy wonderful marriages and this gives me hope. Sure, they have their share of struggles; there are bad times as well as good. But I see how they work together to get back in balance when the bad times come to call, which, even now, after all I’ve been through, gives me hope. Unfortunately, my ex and I never got the hang of this.
Most marriages begin with hope and desire. But in order to sustain themselves through the years, both people have to learn how to bring out the best in each other and continue to want to do just that. To me, love means wanting your partner to be the best possible version of himself; to blossom, to grow and to explore the wonders of the world with my full support. My marriage became all about laying blame, not laying a firm foundation for the future and when you come right down to it, in order for a relationship to endure nothing less will do.
I wished the Royal couple well on that day which is now a distant memory. But as their marriage began to fall apart right alongside my own, I realized that despite our fairy tale beginnings neither of us had the mettle to go the distance. Still, I continue to admire the successful, happy couples I know. And I look towards the possibility that someday, I too will find the same thing my happily-married friends have found; a partner who wants to go the distance with me because it’s better than the alternative. Maybe that’s wishful thinking. But then again, maybe it’s not.