Sunday, September 13, 2009

I love being married. It's so great to find that one special person you want to annoy for the rest of your life. ~Rita Rudner

I never leave a wedding weekend with everything I arrived with. This morning was no exception. I left the resort for the Sonoma County Airport minus a flip-flop and a voice. It seems like a fair trade. Because I also left with a renewed belief in true love.

As one of Sarah's Bridesmaids, it was with honor that I gave the new Mr. and Mrs. a toast. As promised, here it is:

"Sarah and I, along with a gaggle of girls, grew up together on a little island in Washington. Our tight knit crew of ladies has been best friends for as long as it matters. My older sister, Arwen, refers to us "affectionately" as the Rogue Sorority. Rogue, indeed. Roger, I would like to thank you for your patience with all of us and our shenanigans over the last six years, and also take this moment to thank you in advance for your continued patience over the next six decades.

I know that traditionally this is a time to give marital advice. Who are we kidding? I am not the one to give relationship advice. My date for this wedding is a bottle of wine. Maybe I should talk about the things I don't know.

The thunderstorm last night had me wide awake and counting. From the white flashes of light to the low rumbling of thunder: one-one thousand, two-one thousand... But I keep losing count. I keep going back to my childhood vacations on the banks of Lake Roosevelt in Eastern Washington. Sarah spent many of these trips with me, witnessing explosive summer storms that lit up the desert sky in an dramatic display.

I have spent a lifetime counting the space between lightning and thunder and I still have no idea what it even means. One mile for every three seconds or maybe the other way around? I don't know, and in the dark grey of last night, I realized it doesn't really matter.

"Relationships are like this. Sarah and Roger are like this. You can sit and try to figure out the facts, work out the logistics. You can analyze and ask questions. But in the end, it doesn't really matter. The power and beauty comes from the unpredictable chaos of it all. And like any force of nature, there comes a moment when everything else disappears and all the only thing left to do is lay back and take it all in.

Sarah and Roger are nothing less than a force of nature. They bring to each other everything they are and everything they have. No filter on these two. They fell in love and fell into the mess of life, arms out stretched. No fear.

One thing I admire about both of them is their authenticity. On an individual level, neither apologizes for who they are. This has proven to be a key ingredient in their success as a couple. The way they move through the world and their lives together is refreshingly organic.

Hold on to this. Keep putting in the work. It's not easy to be so true and honest all the time. Both of you have managed to make it look effortless.

And like the storm that woke us all up last night, sometimes heat and chaos collide to make beauty and strength beyond words. We can't always explain it, but now I realize we don't have to.

I love you both so much. Congratulations and here's to a long, happy life together.