Thursday, December 25, 2008

Doxy Eats Crow for Christmas

Merry Christmas, my dear Invisible Friends! What a year this has been...elections, recessions, hospitalizations, oh my!

But always...ALWAYS...there has been hope, love, and friendship. I can't thank you enough for all the support and the prayers I have gotten from those of you who come here and read my scribblings. I count a number of you as real-life friends as a result, and that is a wonderful Christmas blessing.

I am a lucky woman.

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Luck does not always come in the forms you expect, however.

Not all that long ago, I wrote a long post on my distrust of the institution of marriage (The Triumph of Hope Over Experience). I know I said I would never, ever, EVER get married again.

I meant it, too.

But on December 6th--the Feast of St. Nicholas--Dear Friend got down on both knees and asked me to marry him.

If you had seen the look on his face, you couldn't have turned him down either...

We had to ask the Bishop for permission, which is one reason I didn't announce the news sooner. Bishop Curry has not only given his permission--he has offered to perform the ceremony. That was a true stroke of grace for me--a sign that my past relationship mistakes are not beyond redemption.

It still bothers me immensely that I have tried and failed in the past--I wanted to celebrate my 65th anniversary, as Dear Friend's parents were able to do before his father died last year. "Third time's a charm!" is funny, but painful. It is not what I wanted.

But Dear Friend is who I want. He is who I wanted all along...I just kept thinking that no one gets the total package in one person, so I settled for what I thought was enough. Passion the first time. Stability the second.

Imagine my surprise when I realized you could have passion, commitment, friendship--and God--all in the same relationship...

Dear Friend is the whole ball of wax. He is loving, kind, thoughtful, brilliant, funny, and beautiful--inside and out. He loves God and he loves me--and he is open and candid about both of those things to everyone who will listen. From the moment I met him, he made me feel special. I will spend whatever time God blesses us with trying to return the favor.

We will be married Memorial Day Weekend, when we will also celebrate his 60th birthday.

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You may now commence your chorus of "I told you so's!"

I deserve that.

But in the midst of happily eating all that crow, I will beg your prayers--for Dear Friend and myself, our combined five children, and our exes. Love and hope we have in abundance. Pray for grace, patience, and mercy if you will. We will need them all.

Finally, I ask you to pray for those who may not yet take this step--or who are grieving attempts to undo the marriages they have already made. Dear Friend and I are ever mindful of the fact that there are many who want to celebrate their own triumph of hope and love and cannot. In our joy, we do not forget their pain--and we will not rest until all who want to make loving, faithful commitments can do so both legally and in the Episcopal Church.

And now, I'm off to start eating. I hope your Christmas dinner is as pleasant as mine!