Happy ever after ?

30 years ago today… Gadget Guy and his girl were married.

**30 YEARS** What an achievement. No, seriously. That’s like longer than I’ve been alive! So today I find myself looking at another old photo of two smiling friends and wishing I had that time machine set to the 15 of September 1979 just so I could watch and see the people they were then, maybe so I could have a smug smile on my face because I would know this one’s a keeper. This topic has been on my mind a lot lately as me and KM contemplate the possibility of perhaps booking our wedding.  Marriage. The rest of your life.  That is a long time. How do you make these things work anyways? This is Gadget Guy we’re talking about here. He has to have the manual to successful marriage because  the pair of them sure seem to know something few people do these days. It turns out nope, no instruction book to be had :S  I personally reckon they should write one.. There are plenty of other self help books out there. I’m sure it could be a best seller.

KM, this morning after, of course, adding his congratulations turns to me with a sheeks 30 years… you reckon we will have had a good run and got over it by then?  While he was kidding, I know how the man feels.  30 years. I can’t even imagine. Ok maybe I don’t want to. I’m the girl who’s having a minor crisis about her 30th birthday coming up. I can’t see past 31 right now and I was only forced to plan ahead that far as that’s the age I hope to qualify as a midwife.

All I know is its clear to me from the short time I’ve known Mr. and Mrs. Gadget Guy is that there is hope. It can be done. What they have is working. It should be obvious to anyone who takes the time to quietly observe that these two fit together so well it’s scary. I don’t know if they would believe in soul mates but if not they are a pretty good imitation.  Now I could not comment as to what goes on behind the scenes,  but I do know this:  I have never herd either of them bitch about the other and in this day and age that’s refreshing. All I saw were giggles, shared in-jokes and a lifetime of great memories. Two people who clearly still enjoy each other and have fun as much as possible. They don’t seem to be touched by the bitterness that can sometimes be seen between two people who have been married a longtime.  Alongside the old picture,  I wish I could hold all this in a snapshot  the way they are together as I saw them 2 years ago. It’s priceless and should give all the would-be weds reason to stop and think. So that’s just what I did.  I spent the day with my other half foraging for blackberries and laughing myself silly at this grown man so frightened of spiders. He did the heebie-jeebies dance with arms and legs flailing. As he squealed like a girl i fell in love with him all over again. I don’t know if we’ll make 30 years, but I sure hope so. You have to figure some people are just worth the risk of getting hurt.

I’m a “Pretty Woman” girl. Noooo I’m not a hooker, but I certainly have a Cinderella complex. “I want the fairytale”. Today I was thinking about this too. Why is it that so few marriages are passing the 10, 25, 30, 50 year mark? What makes divorce rates these days so high?  Is it that people now feel they have the option where as in years gone by d-i-v-o-r-c-e was taboo and not the done thing? Is it that people these days are to quick to marry?  I have to say this argument is losing its credibility for me lately. The two long-time married couples I know did so in their 20’s and the couples I’ve watched marry certainly seem to have considered the commitment.

Perhaps it’s this last and all together more worrying theory: maybe popular culture is to blame. The fairytales we read, the chick flicks we watch,  the endless stories…  boy meets girl blah… blah… fireworks… champagne… rings… flowers… dresses… weddings… and a happily ever after. The end.  Happily ever after. It sounds so simple doesn’t it?   Prince Charming comes along sweeps you off your feet you get the most fantastic shoes (I told you Cinderella was my favorite :P). You marry and everything is wonderful from then on. Your stepsisters have to work in the kitchen and you get on with your love’s parents famously! HA! What a joke, right?   The idea that all you have to do is find THE guy and everything will just take care of itself. Maybe that’s the problem.  Do we in this generation expect to much and compromise to little?

I’m certainly guilty of  fretting about the small stuff,  seeing all the ways in which me and KM differ and worrying that he’s not the perfect guy… that the grass could be greener…  that commitment is too permanent too much like… commitment. Sometimes I have to stop and remind myself that he’s only human.  He’s not Prince Charming . And anyways Prince Charming always seemed a little metrosexual to be my type 😛   We need a new kind of fairytale… where the ending is not about never having any obstacles in your life  but about how couples work together to get through them.  We should spend less time looking for imperfections in our partners but rather trying to fix them in ourselves. Happily ever after shouldn’t be about castles, crowns and fancy dresses but about a girl and a boy living a mundane mid life together with their bunny somewhere outside Chicago and spending a day at the zoo on their pearl wedding anniversary.

It looks pretty good to me.

Ali xX

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