Thursday, August 27, 2015

The Root of the Root – Marriage in the Second Decade

I loved his writing before it was trendy. Before it made it in to movies. Before it was quoted in books. As a lover of books and words and poetry, I knew e. e. cummings before he was pop culture cool. And being a writer who loves breaking rules, his eccentric, whimsical ways with grammatical and linguistic rules has always appealed to me.

[i carry your heart with me(i carry it in] has always been a favourite. As my anniversary rolled around this year – twenty one years with my guy – it was those words that came to mind. I’m not going to claim to have all the answers (or any answers) about marriage. It’s a mystery. But we’ve crossed the threshold of decades together, so maybe there is something I can say.

We Carry Each Other
i carry your heart with me(i carry it in
my heart)i am never without it(anywhere
i go you go,my dear;and whatever is done
by only me is your doing,my darling)
This is one thing I know for sure: I would not be here today without my husband. I’ve written here and there about his patience, his caring, and his hands that have held me through all the trials that we’ve walked through. He is there. Sometimes it seems like he has always been there. And I carry him with me, even when we are apart. I carry him with me when I am head over heels dizzy about him. I carry him with me even when I am furious and frustrated with him – when I want to throw a skillet at him. Trust me. It happens. Marriage between two flawed, beautifully human people produces laughter and tears. And through it all, I carry him with me. We carry each other.

We Fear Nothing if We Are Together
i fear
no fate(for you are my fate,my sweet)i want
no world(for beautiful you are my world,my true)
and it’s you are whatever a moon has always meant
and whatever a sun will always sing is you
After twenty-one years together I feel like we’ve discovered our groove; our system; our jam. We have turned into one of “those couples” who can finish sentences and get inside each other’s heads. We have those moments (more and more often) when one person comments on something and the other laughs and says, “don’t even – I was just thinking that!” Together, we can tackle everything from a new debilitating diagnosis, to financial crisis, to traffic (a friend once told me we are Statler and Waldorf – remember the Muppet theater? – when we get in the car). We can do this because we’ve done it before. With a huge helping of God’s grace and strength. And because we work.

If I share nothing else – perhaps with those who are still in the three to five year phase of their marriage vows – I have to share this: love and marriage is work. To live and breathe move in and amidst each our lives in (mostly) harmony requires commitment, investment, a bucket of grace, and a flexible sense of humor. Even the best of friends (and it really is the greatest if you’re married to your best friend) will butt heads and be unable to see eyeball to eyeball. The parts that help you balance each other are also the parts that will make you go head to head and nose to nose. But stick with it. Holding fast together through the storms and the waves is the best thing you can do. You will deepen together. You will grow together. You will find refuge together. You will find your love that endures.

We Still Find Wonder
here is the deepest secret nobody knows
(here is the root of the root and the bud of the bud
and the sky of the sky of a tree called life;which grows
higher than soul can hope or mind can hide)
and this is the wonder that's keeping the stars apart

i carry your heart(i carry it in my heart)
I’ve read somewhere that after a certain period of time, marriage can become dull and boring. Its participants falling out of the sparkly, shiny Disney romance that marks the beginning of a courtship. But listen up people (or perhaps don’t listen – to those other voices) – it doesn’t have to be that way. I’m not saying that you’ll live in a permanent haze of glistening romance twenty-four-seven for ever and ever, but don’t believe for one second that you have to fall out of anything or lose those shivery feelings.

You will have days of the mundane ordinary, but you will also have days when you feel like giggly teenagers sneaking around the halls at school. There is no expiration on romance.

One of my favourite things about my husband is that he brings out my goofiness. I don’t have much, but he can find it. I love that he makes me laugh. I don’t laugh enough. I love that I can be wholly and fully myself with him – the good, the bad, the crazy. He might be the only person who sees all the facets.

The thing that makes the laughter happen; that makes the sparkle still happen; the makes the romance linger – find wonder together. It might be as grand as a trip to Paris with a stopover in the Tuscan country side (massive props if you pull that one off!), but it can also be as simple as a walk along the seaside watching the sun set. Finding wonder together means the willingness to slow down; to deliberately set aside time for each other; and to learn what the other person loves and share that with them.

Marriage is good. It’s hard. Damn hard. But it’s good. It was created, blessed, and called “good” by One much higher than I, and I believe that Word. I believe it is the root of the root, and the bud of the bud and the sky of the sky. I believe it with my heart. I believe it with my life.
So to Shawn Patrick, on the advent of twenty-one years of doing this marriage thing together – I love you. I carry your heart, and love that you carry mine. I am never without you. You do all the things to me. With you, I am not afraid. I am ready for whatever life brings our way. You are my sun and stars. I will be the moon of your life. We share the deepest secret that nobody knows and it goes as deep as the root of the root and bud of the bud and the sky of the sky of this thing called life. I love you. Let’s do a few more decades together. That is all.

I'd love to connect with you some more - stop on by the Three Bees Facebook Page or connect with me on Twitter @3BeesBlueBonnet. Let's continue the conversation!


  1. You are awesome and this is awesome and I pray that the next 21, 31, 41 years are filled with joy and laughter!

  2. I just posted this to my daughter, Darcy. :)


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