Saturday, October 10, 2009


(a photo of us during our fifth date, I think)

Almost five years ago I made the acquaintance of a man online. It seemed like a fairly harmless flirtation.

About month later Joe had flown from half way across the continent and kissed me in my kitchen in front of my fridge. I was smitten.

Six weeks after that, he met me at the arrivals area at the Humphrey Terminal of the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport. It was March. I knew that if I was leaving British Columbia in March to visit a man in Minnesota he must have been special indeed.

Two days before I left the Twin Cities he said to me, "So I guess we're going to have to get married, right?" If we were going to be able to live in the same place with each other, yeah, that was the only way.

In late May I flew to Cincinnati, Ohio for me to meet his family and we drove to points across Eastern Ontario to introduce him to my family. He had a lot going on for him that summer. Quitting his job, moving to Ohio, donating his mom a kidney, moving to Canada and getting married. All that went down for him between July 7 and October 8. He totally kept it together.

We were married at moonrise on the BC Ferry Queen of Capilano during its 17 minute sail from Horseshoe Bay to Bowen Island. The bride and the groom wore black and red. We stopped for a drink, got back on the next ferry, and headed to North Van for a night of oversized tiki drinks at Raglan's. It was low key, perfect and cost less than $500.

Around our first anniversary I was pretty convinced that if we weren't married and/or were both from the country we lived in we wouldn't be together anymore.

Around our second anniversary I think we both had learned a lot and were starting to consider the long term benefits of pairbonding.

Around our third anniversary I was so tired and so weak, I don't remember if there was any sort of celebration at all. We had a small thanksgiving with Simon and Ben, our best men, and called it a night.

Yesterday when I woke up he had been awake for a while. While I was pulling on some clothes to guard against the morning chills, he came into our room, put his arms around me, kissed me and wished me a happy anniversary. He didn't let go for quite a while. I told him I love him, and he said it back. And then we carried on with our plans for the day.

If there's one thing that this fourth year of marriage has taught me its that the world and its problems are easier to deal with in pairs. I also keep thinking about the two things my grandmother told me about marriage.

1) Remember that all the things he does today that annoy me will be the things that I will miss when he is dead.

2) Character is more important than personality.

Joe is a man of good character. Our relationship is very different than the one we had in those heady days of trying to deal with a cross-border, long-distance relationship as we prepped a wedding and the paperwork for his move to Canada.

We've become boring. We have different priorities; because we're older, because we've both put on a little weight, because I'm sicker, because he's a student, because I'm unemployed. It's his good character that has allowed him to roll with these changes and not act like he's been short changed. If he feels that way, I can't tell from the way he treats me and he's never said so.

I can say, without hesitation, that I love him differently than when we married, but definitely more. I have been (I am so not comfortable with this word) blessed by this man. Not that I think some super-natural force put us together, but because our accidental meeting on forum board in the middle of the internet has brought gifts and good fortune to my life. Things I would not have found with anyone else, I know for certain.
"Do you want me to tell you something really subversive? Love is everything it's cracked up to be. That's why people are so cynical about it... It really is worth fighting for, being brave for, risking everything for. And the trouble is, if you don't risk anything, you risk even more."

Erica Jong - How To Save Your Own Life

If you're reading this Joe, know that you are "the mutha fuckin' love of my LIFE". No question, no doubt. Lets hope that next year is better than the last.


  1. That was amazing, what you have is amazing, and I am so glad you shared. Congrats to the both of you.

  2. That's really beautiful.

    When I was married (today is my 10 years anniversary), someone told us that we need to remember that the person we marry is not going to be the person we are married to in 20 years. We thought they were saying we'd be divorced, but they quickly clarified that we were both going to change and that the sign of the good relationship is that it will change as we do. Sounds like you two have already figured out how to do that.

    As we say here in Jerusalem: may you have love until you are both 120!

  3. Happy Belated anniversary you guys