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I Do – 20 Years Later | Mary Biever | One Writing Mother

I Do – 20 Years Later

Photo courtesy of Michael Gray Photography

“I do,” I said 20 years ago on our wedding day. The happily ever after adventure we got is different from the one I imagined that day.

What’s the secret that kept our marriage going, even on the days when the bathroom sink broke, the kids got stomach bugs, and the cat got fleas?

Those simple words: “I do.”

In the 1968 film Yours Mine and Ours (embedding of this video was disabled), Henry Fonda explains the facts of life to his daughter. Henry plays Frank Beardsley, a widower who has married Lucille Ball, a widow. As they combine their household of 18 children, chaos erupts when Lucille goes into labor with number 19. As their daughter struggles to know what real love is, Fonda explains:

“It’s giving life that counts. Until you’re ready for it, all the rest is just a big fraud. All the crazy haircuts in the world won’t keep it turning. Life isn’t a love in, it’s the dishes and the orthodontist and the shoe repairman and… ground round instead of roast beef. And I’ll tell you something else: it isn’t going to a bed with a man that proves you’re in love with him; it’s getting up in the morning and facing the drab, miserable, wonderful everyday world with him that counts.”

My home is chaotic as times, but not as chaotic as the scene in this movie. Nevertheless, when my world grows to hectic and I long for the blissful honeymoon or some Calgon take me away time on my own personal Pacific Island, I think of Henry and realize something.

Each day I say “I do.” Love is a decision and an opportunity often disguised through the routine of dishes, laundry, cooking, and driving my kids. It’s the decision to stick through the chaotic moments along with the blissful honeymoon that makes a marriage.

So today, I say “I do.” I’ll repeat that tomorrow, and every day, and rejoice in the unexpected gifts along the way.

3 Responses to “I Do – 20 Years Later”

  1. Simon May 25, 2011 at 8:46 am #

    Congratulations, Mary!

  2. nibbyp May 25, 2011 at 3:20 pm #

    Mary you simply are the best! Richard too!

  3. Kathleen Lapekas May 25, 2012 at 9:42 am #

    Wow! Wonderful and touching points.

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