Hubs and I started seriously discussing marriage about six months into our relationship. The discussion continued for months and months, into and beyond our actual wedding day.
I just want to establish that we talked about what “being married” meant to each of us A LOT. We asked each other a ton of questions. I know we covered a lot of ground during the long period of introspection and discussion but I have only one specific memory of a question and answer session.
I have no idea if Hubs remembers it or not, but it was the most striking, touching answer I’d (perhaps ever) received. It cemented the fact that I wanted to marry this man, spend the rest of my life with him. It was a simple exchange, but at the end of it I would have hopped a plane to Vegas, or packed up our whole lives and moved thousands of miles away, just to be with him. (derp!)
I’ve thought of his words many, many times since then. Given our experiences in the interim, that memory has only served to deepen the love and respect I have for the man I married. Here’s a transcript (as close as I can get).
(Setting: a car ride, probably from a day down the shore. LOTS of talking before this chunk of discussion.)
Hubs: So how many kids you want to have?
Rae: (laugh) I dunno, ten?
Hubs: (laugh) I’m not sure if I can do ten. I would like a few…
Rae: How many’s a few?
Hubs: How ’bout three?
Rae: How ’bout five?
Hubs: Maybe I can do four…
Rae: (laugh) I can handle four.
Hubs: Deal. Four it is.
Rae: At least…
Rae: What about adoption? Into that?
Hubs: Well, I would like to have one or two of our own. We’re very talented, attractive people. I think we should share with the world. But I think adopting would be cool, too. I think it would be really cool to adopt a crew of blatantly multi-racial kids. That’d rock. (This was before Brangelina.)
Rae: (another laugh) (I laugh a lot when he talks to me.)
Hubs: We’d blow everyone’s mind. We’d be awesome.
Hubs: What else? I know we haven’t exhausted this subject.
(We decide on the gender of our entire brood. We also decide we’ll have at least one set of twins. I up the number of kids to six without him noticing.)
Rae: Let me ask you something.
Rae: What if, for whatever reason, we can’t have kids?
Rae: Well, what if? What if we never have kids?
(I’ve gotten very serious. Then Hubs gets very serious. We haven’t thought of this before.)
Hubs: Not gonna’ happen. We’re amazing.
Rae: Yeah, but what if it does? What if kids aren’t in the mix?
(A full minute of silence. We digest. I wait for an answer.)
Hubs: Rae, listen. I don’t think that’s going to be something we deal with; I hope to God it isn’t. But if it does, okay. I’m good with adopting. If that doesn’t happen, that’s okay, too…
“I’m marrying YOU because I love YOU. I’m not marrying you because of your fruitful womb or amble birthing hips (I laugh). I want to spend the rest of my life with YOU. And if we do that with a house full of kids or if it’s just the two of us, I’m a happy man. My ultimate goal is to be old, toothless, and sitting on a porch, in a rocking chair, NEXT TO YOU.”
In everything we have done and been through since that conversation, my husband has proven over and over again that he really meant it. Given the date, I’d be easy for me to feel a sense of loss today.
Instead, though, as we gear up for a “together” vacation (one of several planned for this year), I continue to look at the man I married and think of how incredibly, insanely blessed I am to have him in my life.