We’ve done it, set the date, one in San Juan Capistrano, California, for friends and family of the bride, another in Tralee, Co. Kerry, Ireland, for friends and family of the groom. The list is finalized, deposits paid, music (the most important detail for the groom) decided upon, food (the most important detail for the bride) selected. There are no surprises, we will have known each other five years having lived together nearly as long. A brand new chapter begins, not with the same expectations we had all those years ago when both of us married for the first time. We will not share checking accounts or pension plans, children or grandchildren. We will keep our finances separate and we will never meet each others' parents. Why, then, people ask, would you bother? Why indeed:
Because I like being a wife…Because I’m too old to be someone’s girlfriend… Because a man in his 60’s shouldn’t have to settle for the term boyfriend…Because I want the world to know that I am it for this man I share my life with and that he isn’t holding out for something better…Because I want to check the married box on medical forms…Because when introductions are necessary I want him to say, “This is my wife…” Because I want my children to stop stumbling when they attempt to explain our relationship... Because I was born in 1953 when women wore hats and white gloves to church on Sunday…Because I was brought up believing that when a man really loves a women, he will want to marry her. Because I’m an optimist, too young to give up on love, but old enough, finally, to know what makes me happy...Because, I believe, we aren't meant to be alone and that life is always better when there is someone happy and full of life to come home to...And because my Irish soul has always wanted a last name that begins with an O'.