As a kid, I loved acting. I performed for my classmates as early as the third grade. (I had a teacher at the time that actually encouraged it.)
Fast forward a little bit to high school and a musical called “Guys and Dolls”. I played the part of Big Julie. Good friends of mine, who I got reacquainted with again via Facebook, played the part of Sky and Sarah. Believe it or not, some 30 years later I still remember some of my lines and some of the songs from that musical.
One of the songs was entitled “I’ll Know“. The background for the song has Sky Masterson trying to romance Sarah Brown. Sky knows he’s falling for Sarah, but she’s playing hard to get because she has all these preconceived ideas about what true love is supposed to be about.
Sky? What he was looking for was chemistry.
Even before Ronda and I started dating we both knew we had the type of chemistry Sky was talking about. (Although, Ronda didn’t want to admit it before I finally convinced her to go out with me.) Years later however, and as we both look back to that time, we both knew there was something special between us. Last week, we reminisced about our first date. How perfect it was.
It was a scary time for both of us back then. We had both been burned by a spouse who didn’t have the same morals, values, and ideas about love or marriage that we had. Me, I swore off marriage all together. There just wasn’t anyone capable of making that kind of commitment in this day and age over the long haul. Nobody takes this marriage stuff seriously any more.
I couldn’t ignore however the chemistry that Ronda and I possessed. While I had sworn off marriage at the time, I remember thinking, like it was yesterday “You know, if I did decide to get married again, it would be to someone just like Ronda”.
Little did I know – or did I? We had so much in common. And the more we got to know each other through our friendship before actually dating the stronger that bond became based on common ideas and values. Because of the foundation based on friendship, by the time we finally did go out on our first official “date”, we knew (or at least I did) we could let go and trust each other.
We could be ourselves – and when we did – sparks flew, and chemistry took over.
Today, we celebrate our 15 year wedding anniversary. I’ve got to tell you, that chemistry – it’s still there in a big way.
I’m not going to pretend that it’s been perfect all 15 years. There have been the typical ups and downs. There have been disagreements. There have been the fights. There have been things that have been said or done that we wish we could take back.
Personally, and this doesn’t happen very often at all (thank goodness) but any time I think, even for a nano second, about ending this at all – I get this massive smack up side the back of the head from my alter ego and this scolding telling me “Are you NUTS?!”
Why? Because, ultimately I know that this woman is perfect for me. She loves me just the way I’ve always wanted to be loved. She’s my dream come true.
She’s my soul mate.
More importantly, for me, she’s willing to fight just as hard as I am to keep this marriage together. She knows how important the sanctity of marriage is for me. And that kind of devotion and commitment was expressed to me by her the day I married her. She gave me a card that day, and in it, she expressed that she was about to become my “permanent wife”.
If there was any doubt (and there really wasn’t at the time) I knew at that moment she was the right match for me.
Our friendship and our love for each other has certainly grown over the years. Amazingly, it’s accelerated even the last few years. We’re closer now than we’ve ever been – and just when you think it couldn’t get any better, it does.
A big part of that comes from the respect and desire we have to support and help each other grow in our own way. True, we are a couple – and we love spending time together. (There’s nobody I’d rather be with.) But that doesn’t mean that we have to let go of who we are as individuals. Ronda showed me that years ago when she supported me and my desire to build my own business. I was miserable working for someone else. Knowing that this was my dream, she supported the idea and the effort.
Granted, I had a lot to learn – and it wasn’t easy. But it was well worth it. Today, we both work together in our own business and while we work really hard at what we do – we couldn’t be happier or more fulfilled.
Two years ago, I got to do the same for her – and just like she was with me – I’m all in for her and her desire to go after her dreams. And I’ve got to tell you – because we support and love each other as individuals, it only adds to the chemistry we have as a couple.
To my wife, my soul mate and my Princess. Thank you for your love – your devotion – your promise – and your support the last 15 years. I couldn’t ask for anything better than what we have together. Our chemistry makes you and I a perfect fit. Because of the woman you are, I look forward to the next 15 years with even more hope, promise, and optimism. There’s no one on this earth I’d rather spend it with than you.
You have my unwavering love and all of my heart. Forever.