…a toast in your honor…

12 10 2007

today is shawn and lynette’s wedding anniversary. their sixth, although that’s misleading; they were together in some form or another for twelve or thirteen years & dating-then-married for at least ten. if you’ve ever wandered through his house or checked him out on myspace you know this picture; if you haven’t, it’s worth a look, & if you know her well enough that it makes you cry, that’s okay, but just try anyway to look into those faces & manage not to also smile (it’s a little small & blurry, but you can get the idea, anyway)

shawn asked me to have a drink for them today; i’m passing on that invitation to the lot of ya. if you know him, maybe drop him a line, too, to tell him what’s in the glass you’re raising to them (or pouring out for your homies, if you’re that sort, although i’d rather you weren’t pouring it on my porch-floor, j!) or just that he’s on your mind. if you don’t, they’re worth drinking to anyway, & you can take my word on that.

i’ve had a number of conversations with him about marriages and losing them and what’s the same about losing them and what’s way the hell different. we can’t agree for certain (it’s a horrible choice anyway) which is worse, standing around with your partner to watch your marriage die by inches until your partner’s not a partner anymore, just some sullen stranger who knows too much and isn’t grateful, or to have it snatched away from you in the form of losing her, so that while it’s gone it’s also there–the “you” is gone but the “i love” stays forever.

morbid reflection aside (forgive me, the weather decided right now to finally turn cold and grey around here, and while i appreciate its appropriateness to both thought and season, it doesn’t lend much energy), i’m not writing just to mourn her, or to mourn their union. the loss is really fucking tragic, & worth drinking to to drown a little of the sorrow, but what they had was really fucking awesome, and worth drinking to in celebration.

i’ve told shawn, with no little rue, that part of how i knew my marriage was over was by watching him & lynette at trivia–watching them fight, watching them drive each other batshit, watching them laugh, & watching how fiercely all of those things were integral parts of this unshakable togetherness that they had. i recognized that easily as something mine didn’t have, & whether it could ever have been built or not, by the time i made those observations it wasn’t ever going to. but there’s so much more than rue in what that observation takes in.

i learned more about love, and about what marriage can and ought to mean, from shawn and lynette being together–carrying on at trivia, sure, but also throwing parties for each other, teaming up at board games with their friends over, papering their walls with souvenirs and photographs of everything they’d ever shared, weathering so many other tragedies with one another’s hands for strength & one another’s smile to keep them going–than i’ve learned combined from my own, my parents’, and what parts i’ve seen of the marriages of my other friends. i kept trying to invite them to everything, and kept inviting myself over to their place when everybody else was going; i always wanted to see more of it, to grab another set of grinning glances, to get caught in that giddy, fiery, crazy gorgeous crossfire.

i don’t know that i’m ever going to want to marry anybody again, but if i do… i’ll have a far better chance of doing it well and having it work now that i know what love like that really looks like, both as something to look for in someone and as something to shine. their marriage changed my life, and changed my sense of what life could and ought to be like.

i’m not sure yet where i’ll be tonight, but i’ll be raising a glass of something to celebrate what they created, what they had the grace and generosity to share.

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8 responses

12 10 2007
faerieariel

a lovely tribute to a marriage, and a beautifully written post.

12 10 2007
Anonymous

I too shall be raising a glass in their honour.
Beautifully written my friend
Claire

12 10 2007
2eclipse

how wonderful to be touched by another’s relationship. and how wonderful that you care enough to say so.

12 10 2007
Anonymous

Tyra, thanks for sharing this link with me. You said the things I couldn’t find the words to say, but I felt these things in the all-too-limited time I got to spend with Shawn and Lynette together. A tribute to life and love. Speak that love into existence.
JPA

12 10 2007
reedrover

Wow.
Thank you for opening that window just as I was cruising by. I appreciate the glimpse through your eyes into a scene of love. I’m all sniffly now.

13 10 2007
robotapocalypse

So this started as a photo on the camera phone. . .
which I can’t send because I’m not subscribed to that feature. . .
and almost didn’t get downloaded out of my phone without extreme violence to the desktop. . .
but here it is, a toast:

And I think I may have texted him, but I’m not totally sure that I did. Or maybe I did twice. It appears I’m a bit of a technological moron.

13 10 2007
tyra

i don’t think you’re a moron, i think you’re kinda fabulous for trying so many routes to accomplish the goal of taking part in & sharing the moment.
and ZOMG you deliberately sent a text message. i know you; that in itself denotes a world of appreciation for shawn & lynette.

13 10 2007
jessica_dwg

Gorgeous.
Thinking of all of you; it’s too late for a drink tonight, but I’ll have a gin and tonic with lime for you all tomorrow.

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