I want to believe in happily ever afters

 Photo by Edward Cisneros

 Photo by Edward Cisneros

I’m a hopeless romantic. I want to believe in happily ever afters. If given the chance, and the remote, I'll choose a RomCom over anything else. 

It's why I write romance. I want to tell stories of people finding each other. Despite their differences, despite the odds, despite the obstacles, the universe brings them together. 

It's why I love weddings. It's probably the only time I'm surrounded by people who also want to believe in happily ever afters. The look on the grooms face when his bride is making her way to him, the tears they can’t contain, their love so overwhelming - it gets me every time.

You’ve probably seen one of the many wedding shows. There are the ones that pit bride against bride to see who had the best wedding.  There are shows about finding the perfect wedding dress. If you’re really unlucky, you might even have had a close encounter with a bridezilla. 

So many of the women on those shows talk about how they’ve been dreaming about their wedding since they were a little kid. It’s why they get crazy when one thing or another doesn’t go as planned. I’ve even gotten the impression, on occasion, that the wedding day is what it’s all about, not the marriage. 

I can only remember playing “getting married” once. I was playing with my sister and it’s memorable because she usually didn’t like to play with me. I always wanted to play house or play with my dolls. Not something she was interested in. 

We were in the backyard. I pretended to marry Keith Partridge. She pretended to marry Glen Campbell. I remember getting upset that she wanted to marry such an old man - he must have been in his 30’s.

But even then, I didn't think about a wedding dress, the cake. I wanted what came next. No, I’m not talking about the wedding night. I’m talking about the part after that - having a partner in crime, just the two of you against the world.  

My husband and I celebrated our anniversary last Friday. We didn't celebrate the anniversary of our perfect wedding, the one I had been dreaming about since I was a little kid.

Rather, we were celebrating that day, 35 years ago, in worn out bluejeans, in the county courthouse, when I accidentally got married. It was the day I'd been dreaming about since I was a little kid - the part after, the part when we became a family.