Now, almost two months down the line, you would imagine that I would have written about Our Wedding. Or that I would have written about That Article.
Or you would imagine that writing about the transitions from being a single unattached guy to a boyfriend to a fiance to a husband in the dream stage of marriage is a story well worth telling.
And in there, there a several stories that could be told;
Stories of overcoming cancer and alcoholism, of blended families, of finances and marriage, of depression, of gender roles in marriage. Stories about love and sex in old age as someone described us. All these are stuff I could write about.
Or I could write about how the recovery journey and toil as I have known has borne dividends in real-time.
I could write about how perplexed my sweetheart and I were about the amazing goodwill from friends and family when we first announced that we were dating and later that we getting married.
I haven’t been writing. I have been husbanding and parenting and doing my intervention work. Yet writing was an integral part of our meeting, dating and getting married.
I could write about how I persuaded, cajoled and convinced my dearest to sign up for the ten-week premarital class experience amidst her protests that people might think that we were planning to get married. Ahem ahem!
I could write about how I felt hopeless when, on examining our respective backgrounds and getting a stark reminder of how rather structure-less and inconsistent (as if I didn’t know already) mine stood against hers. Her background was characterized by orderliness, discipline and predictability and, of course, structure and consistency. Now, how on earth could I possibly imagine being a responsible husband with that kind of background? I could even mention how my son, at the time, once stumbled upon me sighing loudly (sobbing sounds just sad). I think he was going to ask for a pony or something ridiculously huge like that. He noticed that my eyes were wet and in rare wisdom, he pretended that he’d forgotten what he wanted and quickly left the room.
Or I could also write that how I hoped to make a great husband was not the most important question I had to deal with during that Ndoa class. Being asked why I wanted to get married was. And I was strongly encouraged to go beyond my initial answer that I was getting married so that I would have ‘legitimate’ sex (where I could take a call from my mum without first running out of the room) for the first time in my life.
Then came the wedding planning process which I could also write about. I could tell you I was baffled that those who have trodden this path before never talked about how ‘adult’ this space is. Wedding planning, I feel, is a growing up experience and the wedding ceremony is an induction to the club of grownups. what with the juggling of choice of service providers to suit tastes other than our own; having conversations about and with exes; engaging in brutally honest conversations with our officiating pastors; or learning how to graciously receive support from friends and family. This was adults only stuff. My beloved and I got it early in the planning process the wedding was not just our own.
Oh yeah, there was also the story about the jeans fabric that I had to transfer to an alternative tailor. This was after the one who’d previously done great work for me preferred to have this fabric grace his shelf rather than my wedding. I am still baffled at how it was my fault that I embarrassed him among his peers. Is there a Fundi101 class that teaches the customer is always left…shocked?
I could also write about the interesting conversations with my fellow travellers on the recovery journey; some of whom acknowledged that it was a culmination and fruit of self-work; while others, being new on the recovery path, hoped that it wouldn’t take as long (their words) for them as it has taken for me to get a life partner. And I would assert that my gratitude is that I was certainly not husband material when I embarked on this adventure and urging them not to do it for the sake of getting a life partner. Staying sober is hard enough as it is.
I could write about the wedding. How I only got about four hours of intermittent sleep and hoped it wouldn’t show on the photos. How I broke down immediately I got to the door of the church dome about ten minutes prior to the start of the wedding ceremony.
I could write about when I first met my father-in-law a few months before the wedding and spent seven hours with him in what he later called an interview. And how I was totally intrigued by the whole conversation. And yet I could also write about how I am yet to call him, even to just to say hello.
And then I could reveal what wedding couples whisper to one another at the loneliness of the high table. Or the pleasant surprise of reading lovely quotes that my beloved had asked the cateress to put on the wedding cake. Or the day after the wedding which they never tell you about.
I don’t know if it is a normal occurrence, but the anti-climactic depression on the day after the wedding was bizarre. We had had a great time at the wedding. The drama that we were assured would most certainly happen did happen. At least it wasn’t as dramatic as my pal’s wedding who had no choice but to staple up his incomplete tailored wedding suit.
We wondered why we never settled for that 10 minute wedding option that we had initially hoped for.
I now get why the honeymoon is a most necessary experience (yeah yeah that, too) but more than that, it is a crucial buffer zone between a heady wedding season and sane return to a reality where everybody seems to have a moved on to the next wedding. I got some good advice from Mathew to sleeeeep during my honeymoon.
Yet, despite almost two decades of foundation filling that recovery work is, for me finding love in my 40s is well worth it.
So, for now I will cherish the wife of my mid-life and use the grace of the dream stage of our marriage – which I am told should last for another eighteen or so months – to build a foundation of that to die for finger licking vanilla flavoured scrumptious melodelicious, chocolate dripping snazzy lifetime discovery filled love life.
And then I will write.