Jul 9, 2015

Love & Marriage

Hello there Uncorkeds, 
I hope everyone had a wonderful Fourth of July weekend.  I had a four day celebration filled with friends, family, fireworks, Chardonnay, and a delicious annual pig roast party. It was such a fun weekend. 
So, my friend Nicole's first wedding anniversary is coming up in 3 days (Happy Anniversary, Nicole and Jeff!), so I've been thinking a lot about weddings and the institution of marriage.  (hmm, institution is kind of a funny word here). Nicole and Jeff  had a spectacular wedding up in Northern Michigan at the Inn at Bay Harbor. (Bay Harbor, near Petoskey, one of the most beautiful places I've ever been, seriously.  Magical.) 
Can you stand this beautiful couple??
Photo credit: Chris Van Winkle Photography
 Anywhoo, I was honored that Nicole asked me to be her Maid of Honor.  Certainly brave of Nicole to ask me to play such an important role....I mean, organization and keeping schedules are not what I am really known for, but I was able to screen some vendors, take her to the bathroom, sign her marriage certificate, keep her drink full, make sure she had some food in her belly, and take some awesome photos.  (and yes, I made a few lists along the way) It was an amazing weekend filled with love, family and friendship.  
Look.  Here I am helping. I was so happy for my bestie.
Photo credit: Chris Van Winkle Photography.
So, on this, the eve of their first Anniversary, I got to thinking about marriage in my own life. Marriage was never something that was top of mind for me.  
Working the phones.
Photo credit: Chris Van Winkle Photography.
My parents didn't get married until their early 30's (back in the 60's!) and I never felt any pressure to settle down.  I definitely did not have a mother breathing down my neck for a wedding.  (that may have to do with my selection of boyfriends....oh yes, that's right....it definitely did!) I lived in NYC all through my 20's and marriage was the absolute last thing from my mind.  No way.  I was having too much fun.  Marriage is for later. Like maybe when I am like *gasp* 35 or something.  Not then.  Plus, I was meeting people left and right. Why would I possibly want to settle down? So, marriage went away to presumably be dug out when I get older---like *gasp* 35 or something.  
My super cute parents on their wedding day.
Just celebrated 50 years! 
Most of my college friends got married in their mid-late 20's, but I chalked that up to a New England thing.  And, most of them had met their fabulous husbands at our fine institution of learning, the University of New Hampshire.  So I could understand this.  But I lived in the city. New.York.City.  The city that never sleeps. Empire State Of Mind, baby.  No time to slow down for commitment. I did enjoy going to everyone's wedding.  One summer, I had 12 weddings to attend. Thank you to all of my UNH friends who may be reading this.  Not sure I was always a great wedding guest, but boy, all of your weddings were super fun.  
So, when I was transferred for work to Hartford, CT in my very early 30's, I figured, how hard could it be to meet someone up here?  Right? I could meet boyfriends in the City, I am sure I can do this in Hartford. To say I was wrong would be sugar coating it.  I could barely find girlfriends who wanted to hang out with me, (shout out to my very first Hartford friend, Jessica P.) much less find a single guy.  I was about to enter the Sahara of dating. EVERYONE was married. And up here, they even had KIDS.  Gasp. What? I'm too young!  Why are all of these people wanting grown up responsibilities so.....soon.  I didn't understand it, but at least I met some awesome, amazing girlfriends to hang out with and drink wine.  I definitely would not still be in the state of Connecticut without them.  Connecticut---that's a whole other blog subject.....
So, once I found this awesome pod of friends, I really wasn't thinking about marriage at all.  35 came and went, as did 40.  I started thinking about marriage again around 40.  But then again, I am pretty sure I had some sort of mental break when I turned 40.  I thought, maybe it would be nice to find someone.  Hmmm, how do I go about doing that? Online dating? Ehhhh, I don't know.  While I have very close friends who have met and married this way, I was around for the birth of Match.com and am still scarred from when a guy told me he preferred women who were more "anorexic" looking. Yes, that happened. His name was Garth tho, so, there was that.  Then I dated some super cute stockbroker type who took me to Ray's downtown by the World Trade Center.  He worked in the North Tower.  I think about him (the nameless, cute guy) and hope that he made it out on 9/11 and is still alive.  I was definitely not a finance guy's type.  I was way too insecure and could not comprehend that life of money, the Hamptons, the bonuses, car services and the finest restaurants, etc. (not to mention, I definitely couldn't comprehend the 70 hour work-weeks.)
So, back to Hartford.  Time starts flying and I start wondering....shouldn't I be meeting someone soon?  I'm a pretty funny gal, attractive enough, humorous, relatively smart....I would consider myself to be someone who has a decent personality. (and, I really truly love football and golf!). I just thought, when I was ready to settle down, I could just call up the marriage gods and let them know. "Hey, I'm ready--send me my soulmate".  Everyone was telling me that there is a "lid for every pot" so, I figured, I'm not horrendous, I'll find my lid. 
So, finding my lid has been more complex than I could imagine.  Some days, I really don't want a lid. Some days, I really do.  I've been called out in a recent relationship for verbalizing that I do want a relationship, or "label", but then in reality really don't want that.  And it's true. It is totally true. I didn't know that finding a mate, someone who I could spend a ton of time with, support, trust, confide in, could be so tricky.  Can't it just be easier? I actually don't even care about being married or having a "husband"....I just want a companion.  Someone to have fun with.  Someone who won't kill me when I am being a brat (this might be often).  Someone who will want to be with me. Someone that I'll be in to.  Somebody to love and someone to love me back. You know. It's a fine balance.  
I have tons of married friends, and most of my friends have wonderful spouses and have been happily married for many years.  I know it's not an easy proposition.  Heck, I can barely be in a casual relationship because of the amount of work it takes, so I can't really imagine the navigating the intricacies of marriage.  I know it's not fun all the time. I would say that, as an outsider, marriage seems hard.  So, I guess it isn't as easy as letting the universe know I'm ready to settle down. Because, am I? I guess I should probably figure that out.  It's probably an important piece of the puzzle.  Hmmm, let me think about that and get back to you. 
Until next time, my friends......

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