The first time you marry for love, the 2nd for money and the 3rd for companionship?
I was 24 when I got married the first time. Twenty-four. We met on the dance floor of a seedy 6th Street Austin nightclub. I could see his friend’s nipple rings through his taught wife beater. Was that love? It was, I suppose, through the uncalibrated and utterly clueless lens of a 19 year-old.
The courtship and wedding that followed were winding. My body in its prime, my thought process still largely unrefined and stifled by a lack of a reality known as the real world. I thought I’d never feel more beautiful than I would on my wedding day. Looking back I felt ok, but not beautiful. In love perhaps with the idea of what marriage would look like.
Precisely 10 years after forging fearlessly towards our forever, we split. It stung like hell to watch 15 years dissipate in a couple dozen signatures, like nothing ever happened, spinning in circles in an empty living room wondering who the hell I was.
I was 39 when I said, "I will" the second time. Two kids later, stretch marks, and back fat my mother and BFF gladly duct-taped without even laughing. It was something I told myself I’d never do again because, well, who wouldn't feel like a phony saying forever again? And also, have you ever googled "remarriage?" If you put any faith in internet searches, you might fear that someone as nonjudgemental as God himself may too think that you suck.
That feeling quickly passed when I found someone I never wanted to be away from, and on our wedding day I felt unstoppable and free all at the same time, the same exact feeling I had felt from our first date. Somehow and for some unknown reason, a person who is completely overjoyed to see me, always, and entirely supportive of even my most ridiculous of ideas (i.e. "Hey, should I quit my great-paying job of 15 years in pursuit of a writing career?").
What's the point?
(aka Land the Plane)
Find someone or something who supports you in all your endeavors, whether work, pipe dreams, your deepest desires, your most personal endeavors or most embarrassing secrets. Look for someone or something where no explanation is necessary.
Make it a priority to seek out the curator, critic and confidante of your art, even when (and especially when) no one is buying it.
The second time I married for wholehearted acceptance.
And that’s made all the difference.