This week’s post has been prompted by Post40bloggers, an online group that supports 40+ bloggers who I follow on Instagram and Twitter. The group posted a picture last week asking for followers to share their favourite wedding/couple pics in celebration of Valentine’s Day, so I’ve been digging around for pictures from my wedding to share.
Getting married (for the first time) two months shy of turning the big 40 wasn’t really in my original life plan. Like most young women I thought I would meet Mr Right at the ‘appropriate time’ in my youth and be settled down with children by the time I was forty. That didn’t happen for me. Newly bruised from a bad relationship that ended as my thirties began, I started this decade of my life with a heavy heart and pretty much alone.
Life goes on of course and I sought out new ways to have a fulfilling life, and as time continued to roll by, I gradually gave up on the idea that I would ever get married. Fast forward some years and I’m living in London with a great group of friends and a fun, if not demanding, career that is going pretty well, when I go home for Christmas and bump into an old flame in Asda (yes, it’s a pretty epic love story!) of all places.
The relationship quickly took off and before I knew it I had moved back to Bristol, changed jobs, and we were living together. We were married the following year at the Little Chapel of Flowers in Las Vegas. Again, not a long held dream wedding destination, but it fitted our needs perfectly and turned out to be such a wonderful, romantic day. With only us in attendance it kind of felt like we were eloping and if I had a dollar for every time a stranger congratulated us we’d have a bank full of good wishes to see us through the rest of our lives.
I didn’t get emotional on the day itself, I was too excited and couldn’t stop smiling, but the following afternoon we went back to the chapel to view our photos, all 200 of them! As soon as I opened the album it started – big, loud, body-heaving sobs (much like Emma Thompon’s Elinor Dashwood in Sense and Sensibility) and a bucket-load of tears. I think I cried for the same reason she did, I could finally exhale. I was truly happy and content with the person sat next to me. I could give up the search, call off the dogs, cancel the online dating membership.
When I was single a friend of mine would say ‘there’s a lid for every pot’. At times it would drive me mad, because you can feel like you’re the last lidless pot on the shelf, but the glint in her eyes gave me reason to hope. It’s not everyone’s ideal life, to be married, but it has certainly brought a lot of joy to mine.
Have a happy Valentine’s Day!