June 02, 2011

jogging my memory

Its that time of year again:  baby showers, weddings, and rainy weekday afternoons.  I have hosted one baby shower already this Spring, attended several, received one myself, and ordered plenty of wedding gifts from Bed Bath and Beyond.  This time of year always brings me back to the Spring of 2002, when I walked across a football field in Michigan to receive my bachelor of arts in English Literature, and then walked down the stone floor of Dimnent chapel to receive Daniel's hand in marriage.  I spent my time that Spring writing final papers, swooning long hours on the phone with my distant fiance, mulling over things like crock pots and towel sets, listening to Ben Harper in my pjs with Lou, and dreaming of happily ever after.
I remember going dress shopping with my mom.  The first dress I tried on was a simple number from the sales rack, and I loved it.  "I'll take it," I told my mom.  But she said oh no you don't!  I've been waiting your whole life to take you dress shopping and we're going to make a day of it.  So we drove all over Grand Rapids, laughing and oohing and ahhing and eating, and then we went back and bought that dress.  I love you, Mom.
The picture above is one of our favorites from May 26, 2002.  We were married two minutes before digital photos were standard, so we only have the prints that we ordered.  This is a photo of the print that hangs framed in our home school room, right above my desk.  It shows how young we were, and how excited, and how stupid (I say that with more warmth than words can relay).  Do you see the truck key in Daniel's right hand?  We jumped in his Ford F150, 12 seconds after this picture was taken, and drove off to take on the world!  We chuckle now when we look at this picture, saying that those two kids had no idea what they were getting themselves into.  Not marriage, mind you.  Our marriage has been the bedrock of our lives and always will be.  We mean life itself, with all of its burned birthday cakes and miscarriages and spiritual warfare and valleys of darkness when the only light we have is the light of G0D himself. 
I also like to look at this picture when my memory starts to fail me.  When I can't remember why we're doing this.  When I can't remember how it all began.  I look at this picture and it all comes flooding back.  I can almost feel my feet clicking down the chapel steps and across the concrete, underneath swirling rose petals and clapping hands, my brand new husband's fingers intertwined with mine, his new ring pinching my skin.  Oh yes, now I remember, my heart says with a sigh, Now I remember.