Both moving and profound. We may stop and take stock, no matter what section of our life’s journey we are on.
Today is my wedding anniversary, and if I know what is good for me I cannot let it pass without giving it a mention.
Jen and I have been married eight years today. But that doesn’t tell the whole story.
We met when I was six, when my family moved house to a new town and I started afresh in the infants school that she was in. I have memories of her during this period,and of our juvenile interactions, which lasted until, aged 11, we were separated as we went to different secondary schools. Three years later we were reunited when we both left our respective secondary schools and moved on to the same high school, and from that moment on us two former primary school friends became inseparable best mates. Long after we left school and took our first faltering steps upon the road to adulthood we remained close.
As life took us both this way and that we stayed in touch, supporting each other through difficult times, congratulating each other in good times. I went to her engagement party. She came to mine. People would often comment on our closeness, and over the years we must have used that old clichè ‘just good friends’ a thousand times. When that thorny topic would arise, be it in the media or in our social circles, about whether members of the opposite sex can ever be just purely platonic friends (think Meg Ryan and Billy Crystal in that film, minus the restaurant scene) we would say that we were living proof.
Now we are married with two children. Hmm……
We finally gave into what everyone else could see as the inevitable, and today we have been married for eight years. I guess it was all about the timing. We play the long game. If you want to break it down:
Friends: 36 years
Best Friends : 28 years
Relationship: 9 years
Married: 8 years
But it can never be just about numbers.
When it came to the day of our wedding, as well as the readings that we had chosen, I felt it right to include my own words,to make it more personal. As a result, a few days before the wedding I wrote this poem which was read out by an old school friend of ours.
We Who Were Friends
We who were friends and now lovers. We who were separate and now stand as one. Remember the tears. Remember the smiles. That we shared in our youth and our song. We who entrusted our secrets. In rapt abandon, right from the start. An instinctive embrace in the pale morning light. Two souls one animate heart. We who were bonded in childhood. Together through each stage of life. A boy and his pal. A lad and his mate. And now, a man and his wife. © AJM