Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Happily Ever After Beyond the Story

Have you ever been so involved in a story that you wish it’d gone beyond the happy ever end to show you? Well, we can imagine and come up with so many scenarios based on what we’ve read and what we’ve experienced. I’m guessing if you asked each reader to give their take on what would happen, you’d have hundreds of different lives.

This is my take on marriage – beyond the HEA.

Marriage is a funny institution. I’ve come to the conclusion that it started as a light-hearted institution to somehow legitimize what’s in the unforeseeable future. Only problem is, people began to take it too seriously. Yeah, that’s right, people take marriage too seriously and then one day when they run into a bump and they panic. Granted, there are legitimate reasons why marriages don’t last, but I’m referring to the ones who suddenly can’t handle the faults of the other, or worse, find themselves with a family and wonder how that happened.

And, yeah, the vows we take are serious, a commitment to one another, but there is so much more than adhering to the promises. Don’t take them at face value, dissect them and learn the variances of fun they withhold.

‘to have and behold from this day on, for better or for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish; until death do us part.’

Rather sounds like doom, doesn’t it? However, nowhere in there says you can’t have fun. ‘to have’ – sounds like fun to me. ‘for better’ – sounds fun. ‘love’ – it’s fun to love. ‘cherish’ – well, it’s hard to cherish one you’re not enjoying.

I hear things like, have fun now, once you say ‘I do’, the fun is over. Why? It shouldn’t be. It should be beginning. With my husband and myself, the fun didn’t end with ‘I do’. The real fun began.

We’re often asked what our secret is. How did we manage to stay together so long? We look at one another and grin. Depending on who’s asking and where we are depends on the answer. And, of course, if it’s me or my husband being asked. He likes to tell them our secret is, “I adore her and she let’s me.” Me, well, you know I’m wordy. lol

The truth is, we are friends first, and foremost. We like being together, doing things together and we have a crazy sense of what’s fun. Boy, will our kids have stories to tell.

In our younger days, well, I don’t want to say that, because he still does this when I least expect it. In a restaurant, if they seat us near plants, he comes up with these wild stories of plants coming to life, growing arms and stealing food. He’ll tell the waitress, “The last time I was here, that plant…” The first time he did this, I was 18/19 years old. I never had so much fun in a restaurant, or laughed so hard. He had the waitress so afraid of the plants, she’d go out of her way not to be near them.

We’ve been known to get up and walk outside in a rainstorm and sit in a mud puddle and splash around until we were covered, make mud pies and serve them for dinner just to see the kid’s faces.

Our poor kids.

Is it no wonder my oldest son will come in, stand just inside the doorway of the living room, and wait for me to jump four feet off the couch when I notice someone is there. lol

Once we decided to play a joke on my husband’s co-workers. New job and no one had met me-this was twelve years ago. Every Friday, they went down the street from the office to a bar for cocktail hour where they’d play darts, drink and eat. So, we concocted a plan where I’d play a hooker and he’d try to pick me up. This went on for three months, and it was wild. We had the best time, though we ended up having to tell his boss and another co-worker who were relentless. Then it came time for the tell-all. He showed up at the company Christmas party with the hooker who shot him down, repeatedly. Halfway through the dinner, my husband announced that I was really his wife. Jaws dropped and silence came over the room. Now, everything we do is suspect. You can imagine the reaction when my husband walked in one day with the cover of A Psychic Hitch and told them that Bekki Lynn was his wife. One of the guys is still convinced it’s another game we’re playing.

We do quieter things, too. Silly things such as sit across the room from each other and chat on messenger, sometimes flirting as strangers. One of our favorite things to do is to go in our bedroom and watching sitcoms on the Family Channel as if we were a couple of teenage kids. Laying there on our bellies at the foot of the bed, feet swinging in the air, a bowl of popcorn on the floor in front of us. We’ll be laughing so loud the kids will tell to be quiet and go to sleep.

Or walking through the grocery store exchanging innuendos. Or, I’ll turn around to find out where I lost him at and he’ll be standing with another guy and they’ll both be staring at me. He’s acts like he doesn’t know me and wants to know if the man thinks he’s good enough to go out with me. No one has ever said no. Other times, we banter back and forth and unexpectedly involve other customers in our play. Then we’ll run into them again at some point in the store and they give us silly grins. It makes us feel like we’ve brightened their day, it did ours.

Or I’ll play the damsel in distress when he’s gone across the store for something. I’ll call him and he has to find me to save me from some giant food creature.

We do normal stuff, too. Leave each other notes, cards – at random give flowers or a plant. The other night, he came in and asked if it was all right if he thought about me. He then kneeled and presented me with a one-liter bottle of Pepsi as if it was a bottle of wine and asked if it was all right if he bought it for me.

Marriage should be full of little fun things.

I will admit there have been rough times emotionally, financially and all the normal stuff, but it’s all we are to each other that allows us to get through them, and makes them so unimportant. I don’t care if he puts the toilet paper roll on backwards, or wakes in a bad mood. I don’t even care if he leaves the toilet seat up and I fall in at two in the morning.

There was a time when I lost my mind. Seriously. I woke one morning and decided I no longer wanted to be married, I no longer wanted to live with my husband, but I still loved him and I wanted to be with him. This plagued me. I ended up going to mental health [military clinic] and I tell you, that doctor did his best to keep a straight face as I told him this. I was serious about wanting to move out and only have a sexual relationship with my husband and he worked to keep the corners of his mouth lifting. Finally, he told me I was experiencing ‘the seven year itch’ and to go home and talk to my husband about it. Yeah right, men’s egos are way too fragile to handle something like that. I went home, went about my life and the whole thing went away. I did eventually tell him, just a few years ago. He laughed. And well, yeah, a game came of it.

This is a sample happily ever after beyond the story we give readers.

I can’t imagine my life any other way. I’m just happy to have him here with me. That’s all I need today. Today, we celebrate our 32nd wedding anniversary.

Contemporary romance with sizzling sensuality
Jewel of the Sun’s BLOOD DESTINY – Coming Soon
LOVE, Stalker of the Heart – a poetry collection – available now
A Psychic Hitch available now
Last Glass of Wine available now
Servin' It Up available now at Amazon and Barnes & Noble


Savanna Kougar said...

Bekki, no wonder you love him!!!

Congratulations on your anniversary.
More, congrats on having a fun and loving marriage, or is that a fun-loving marriage?
And, thank you, for sharing. I rarely get a chance to know about such a loving marriage.

Jane Richardson, writer said...

Oh, Bekki, what a wonderful post. I agree with everything you've said. yes, the fun does begin after 'I do,' and so does the 'work,' but why not? Something worth having is worth working for! Of course there are rough times, doubts and fears, but it is possible to get through them, just as you've said. I will smile all day long thinking of you two, and I hope you have a wonderful and completely nutcase day, as I'm sure you will! Many, many congratulations to you both. :_

Jane x

Lindsay Townsend said...

Wonderful, Bekki! What a loving, fun marriage you both have!That deeper level of sharing is so rewarding it's often where the true romance begins.

Serena Shay said...

Happy Anniversary!! What a wonderful 32 years you've had! You're absolutely right, the fun does start once you say I do. :)

LOL...I'd love to have been at the dinner when your husband arrived with the "hooker" I bet you could hear crickets chirping in that room! Classic!! :)

Bekki Lynn said...

Both Savanna, both. lol

His mom often says it would have been wrong if we'd married other people.

Linda Banche said...

Congrats on your anniversary. Being married that long is an achievement.

We rarely hear about the marriages that last. We always hear about the failures.

There are real happily-ever-afters out there. We need to hear about them more often.

Bekki Lynn said...

Thanks, Jane,

Friendship+Love+Work=Fun The percentages of each vary every day, but it's so worthy and definitely breaks up the humdrum.

Bekki Lynn said...

Lindsay, I really didn't think too deep about it until I was reminded the other day that a friend of ours was spending her first anniversary without her husband. It really makes you put things in perspective. They were a fun-loving couple, too. It would have been their 33rd wedding anniversary. I realized how lucky we are.

Bekki Lynn said...

Oh, yes, Serena. I recall my heart pounding in my throat. You can never be sure how strangers will react. It ended well though.

Bekki Lynn said...

Hi Linda --

You're so right. There are so many long-lasting marriages out there.

We both come from divorced parents, but his mom was married a long time to his adopted dad before he passed on. I think eding up on 40 years.

My dad and step-mom have been married 41 years. My dad is a trip.

Our siblings have been married forever. I think the least amount of time is his youngest brother, I think, 18 years now. He was ten when we married.

My paternal grandparents had near 80 years when grandpa passed away at 97. They were a blast together.

I think it's genetics -- the sense of fun we have.

Savanna Kougar said...

Bekki, those are GREAT genetics to have!