Marriage: a legally and socially sanctioned union.
I’ve been married twice. The first time, I was young and it was alright until I realized it wasn’t. I did get my two older kids though and that made it all worthwhile. After that, I never wanted to get married again. It was like a checklist.
Boxed checked, no need to revisit that. I dated a bit and always stumbled when we got the part about my 2 autistic kids. Honestly, I blame nobody for that. That is a serious amount of baggage. I may have steered clear myself if roles were reversed.
When I started seeing my current husband, it was more about sharing life together, kids included. He traveled a lot for work and we would hop in the van during the summer and drive to wherever he was. He took us to Dino cafes & dig sites, Build-a-Bear, Mini Golf, alligator feedings, and whatever fun attractions were nearby. He played with them and valued who they are. We talked about marriage and it was never really a priority for me. A couple years later, I found myself pregnant. I was happy. He was a good man and would be an amazing Father, but I still didn’t need to get married. In fact, now I didn’t want to because I didn’t want him to think he HAD to because of the baby. Yes, he wanted to marry me before I was pregnant, I just didn’t want to risk divorce again.
The summer before Xander turned one, I finally agreed. It was important to him. He wanted a full family. He even wanted to adopt my older children. Since then we’ve had some serious highs and lows. He has never faltered. His unwavering love reminds me of my Grandparents.
My Grandfather loved my Grandmother unconditionally through all of her trials. He supported her creativity and they spent so much time together bird watching all over the country, gardening, and attending concerts. They spent many summers in Michigan at the very cottage that revives my soul each year.
He loved her deeply. My husband loves me deeply. That kind of deeply. Through all my brokenness. He is here encouraging me to write, paint, read, & evolve into the person that the Lord needs me to be. I share this today because today is my Grandparents’ wedding anniversary. A true example of love. I hope they are slow dancing in Heaven.
September 7th, 1946 – The wedding anniversary of an incredible couple.
14,197 days ago, my Husband was born. I talked about his awesomeness last week, but last night as I was reading through an old journal of my Grandmothers’ (Which I’ve been slowly reading chronologically) I realize the page I’m reading, was written on the exact day he was born. Friday, September 2nd, 1983.
These little “God Winks” or “signs” always make me warm and fuzzy inside. Almost like a gift from the universe.
“I see you, Tiffany.”
“You are exactly where you are supposed to be.”
On this particular day, My Grandmother played the organ for a wedding that morning. She said “Hearing the exact words that were spoken at our (Her and my Grandfathers’) wedding made me realize what we had promised to “be” for each other ~ “Cherishing” in sickness & health ~ For better or worse ~ That’s the name of the game alright!”
Ironic it all happened the day my husband came earthside? I won’t be offended if this puts me in the cuckoo column, but things like this, to me, are like being hugged by something far bigger than I could ever comprehend.
But there’s more.
My Grandmother went on to share details about her day, and at the end of her entry she says ” We had smelt & salad for supper ~ Played the recorder til late ~ then went out in the yard to see if I could see any falling stars ~ I didn’t, but I did see Cassiopeia and the Big Dipper ~ It’s a lovely still balmy evening.”
If you know anything about my husband & me ~ it’s that we started off conquering the galaxy together. So to read about her reflecting on a marriage that lasted over 59 years, while she also is finding solace in the stars… It invoked a really great feeling.
Today I write about a man I don’t ever want to live without. My husband.
In 2012, I played an MMORPG (massively multiplayer online role play game) video game on my computer (SWTOR- Star Wars the Old Republic). As a single mother of 2 autistic children, I needed a pastime that was in my home & also provided socialization. Going anywhere was a nightmare and respite & child care was a constant battle.
I spent years defending the galaxy with people all over the world. I was a healer. Shocking I know, taking care of others in the trenches. I participated in a LOT of PVP (player vs. player) battles and having a healer was essential. I didn’t suck and was asked to tag along all of the time. I found people I enjoyed. We all had our reasons for gaming. I actually met a lot of other parents of disabled kiddos. Then I met a man. We accomplished many things in the virtual world. We became household names on our server. (I wasn’t the best, but he may have been close LOL yolo) My name was Cuore. His name was Tae.
Finally one spring in April we decided to meet in person. He was in St. Louis for business and God himself threw together a dozen people to handle my kids for 5 days. It was bizarre meeting him LOL. It’s funny how you can talk with someone for hours each day and yet – being face to face is like starting from the beginning.
10 months later we decide to live together. The kids call him Mister Tae.
He was the first man to ever intentionally be a part of my children’s lives.
He was there:
When Trin was having MRIs for cysts in her brain.
When she got her period.
At EVERY SINGLE Special Olympic practice.
When Preston sang the National Anthem at multiple venues.
To teach them how to ride scooters.
Every Christmas he spent all the money he received as a gift, back on the kids – He wanted them to have everything they wanted.
To take Preston to the Movies and they played video games together.
To read to them at night and talked to them every evening at dinner about their day.
When the schools failed us.
At the ER/doctor when they got sick.
When they cried from frustration.
Dancing to Pikachu and Charlie the Unicorn Music.
Jumping waves in Lake Michigan.
And… a million other things. He was always there. He was there on the worst days when it would have been so much easier to leave. He chose us. He chose THEM. He chose to stay.
I am not the easiest person to love. I will be the first to admit this. I left my first marriage. I’m sure it was a relief for us both. I was different after having kids. The depression I had as a teen was amplified after childbirth. I am surprised we lasted as long as we did. I have baggage from childhood and I would rather have been alone the rest of my life than staying and making us both miserable. I will say, however – my first husband never asked me to stay. I’m not shaming him for that. Just noting a difference.
Mister Tae, James, Alex – He goes by many names in our home. He has seen me at my absolute worst. He has seen me ready to die. He has seen me fail, be ugly, & stuck in darkness. He also has been the one there to pull me out. He is loyal to a level I can only compare to God not forsaking us. My Husband loves me like I’ve never known love. He wants me to succeed, be happy & thrive. He wants me to have everything – lucky for him I am a minimalist LOL! He loves to travel as much as I do and will book us flights at a drop of a hat for a quick getaway. He is kind and takes care of me in a way I have been failed to by others, over and over again. I know God’s plan is perfect. I know I am exactly where I need to be to do His best work. I feel fully accepted, unfathomably loved & undeniably fortunate.
Mister Tae asked me to marry him a million times. This story is for another time, but after a few years, I finally agreed. This Friday will be our 8th Wedding Anniversary. It’s been messy and wonderful and hard and adventurous. He still makes me laugh and I can still make him blush. Cheers to many more!
I wander through this "waiting period", sharing life blips, autism testimonies, self discovery processes and growth inspirations ~
Until the Lord lets me know what I am to do next, I would love a cup of coffee.