In Sickness And In Health

veterans

In honor of Veteran’s Day, thank you to all the men and women who serve, and have served, in our armed forces, including my dad, (Navy, WWII), my father-in-law, (Army, Vietnam), and my brother in-law, (Marines, Iraq, Part Deux). Without the bravery of our vets, and their commitment to protecting the freedoms I pretty much take for granted all 364 other days of the year, it’s possible I wouldn’t be sitting here today writing my stupid blogs. So, thank you. My weekend represented an entirely different celebration of freedom … a little ritual known as the bachelorette party. A bunch of the girls … (uh, sorry M) …a bunch of us friends took off to the bachelorette’s cabin in Big Bear for a last surge of single-girl madness. Though, to be honest, we were all really happy for her upcoming nuptials. And not just because our bachelorette looks like a young Marilyn Monroe, is smart, funny, successful, and generally the type of woman the single ladies of the world would just as soon see with an inactive profile on Match.com. More because our bride, and her husband-to-be, took such an unusual route to “I do.” One that makes us all ask ourselves, “What would I do?” in that situation. After everything that went down, I’m fairly sure the whole “get married,” response is the right one for them. Our bride and groom met years ago, in one of those love-at-first-sight scenarios. They’ve been together ever since. But our bride had tried married life in her early twenties and gotten a big dose of heartache for her trouble, so, when it came to marriage, she was in the “Been there, done that, no need to do it again,” camp. She wore her old married name around like a drunken tattoo, I suspect to remind her not to repeat past mistakes. So, instead of exchanging vows, our happy couple quite elegantly lived in sin. They bought a beautiful place in a South Bay beach city, traveled together, bought a vacation cabin in Big Bear, and supported each other through life’s professional and personal transitions.

Like all good, smart women with a family history of breast cancer, our bride got regular annual mammograms. This year, however, while she was away from home on a business trip, her doctor contacted her to say the mamo revealed “several masses” in one of her breasts and they needed to schedule a biopsy right away. After a hellacious night alone in her hotel room, grappling with the information, the unknowns, the specter of the BIG C, she did something she’d never done before. Admittedly in a bit of a fugue state – she texted her boyfriend: “Will u marry me?” He texted back, “Yes.”

It gets even better. When she got home, he sat her down and told he was in, no matter what, but asked her to take some time to think about what she wanted, because he knew her history and her philosophy, and didn’t want her making big decisions about their future based on fear over a potential diagnosis. Good guy. Good call. She thought. She soul searched. Nothing changed. He was The One – had been for a long time. She wanted to make that proclamation to God and everyone … “for richer or for poorer, in sickness and in health, ‘til death do us part.” He said, “Me too,” and they started planning a wedding – a small ceremony as classy and unique as the couple themselves.

Now comes an interesting development. Our bride goes in for her biopsy and … the masses are gone. Not gone like smaller. Gone like they never existed. They can’t find anything to biopsy. Maybe the lab made a mix-up with the films? Maybe it was some kind of miracle? We’ll probably never know. Believe whichever explanation makes the most sense to you. But, in a nutshell, medical crises averted. With the instigator of the nuptials suddenly out of the picture, (thank you, Fate, God, Universe, or what have you), we had to wonder if this changed their plans.

Absolutely not. They’re tying the knot next month. Congratulations, S & E. I wish you a lifetime of health and happiness.

Have a non-traditional love story? A roundabout route to "I Do?" Care to share?

Next week: A helpful warning on the dangers of mixing Ambien and a sleep loft.