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My life story–I do

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June 1986 Spokane, Wa.

A giddy laugh made its way over her lips and trickled out sounding much like a bird tweeting it’s morning routine. She remarked that is was pretty, understated and of course the right price. He did not care to accompany me and saw no purpose in a ring, a mere symbol and so my best childhood friend was on hand to give advice and counsel. After all it had already been two years since we made our way through the Palouse and to a tiny wedding chapel where we covertly made it legal. “For $150 it is a gem” she touched my shoulder and smiled, reassuring me that it was needed at the wedding. I placed it on my ring finger and extended my hand as far as possible, staring at the modest gold band dotted with chips of diamond. Although it was simply a  formality it would also mean that our marriage would now be official and this part of life could be a thing of the past. I reached into my pocket and grabbed the wad of cash that I had earned working at a fast food chain. I counted bills and straightened them, placing them in a neat and tidy stack on the glass counter.

The ceremony and exchange of vows two years before had created a tiny crack and somehow served as a barrier between mom, dad and me. It had been the first of many omissions but felt more like a lie and one that would not be revealed until decades later. His mindful instruction continued each month, week and day, telling me that it was now only he and I and no one else could possibly love or understand us. It was imperative, even mandatory that I keep the secret to safeguard the “us” that had become intense and now larger than life.

I gingerly stepped into the car and held my hand over hair that had been styled, curled and sprayed. Lipstick, make up and final preparations were still on my mind but I managed to complete each task knowing it meant we were one step closer. Two years of secrecy followed by guilt had taken its toll and it seemed more of a completion rather than a beginning was about to unfold. The dress, veil and shoes were now deposited in the special room that stood in the basement of my childhood church. A faint smell of coffee and cookies reeled through my mind taking me back to mornings spent visiting with our church going friends. He had agreed to the ceremony in our family place of worship in order to make this transition to married life. Anticipation welled up inside of me but with it the realization that this love that had touched the depths of my soul had also generated other feelings unfamiliar to me. I remembered his words after that fateful day but chose to ignore their impact as I walked up the stairs and into the foyer. “I guess if I loved anyone it would be you”.

 

 

85 Comments Post a comment
  1. Alice #

    And this was the beginning of his mental and physical abuse that NO woman should have to endure. Lynn, you have a beautiful soul!!! Thank you for writing!! ❤️

    Liked by 2 people

    April 20, 2018
  2. Your story is compelling enough, then your last line is a heart stopper. Thank you for sharing this!

    Liked by 1 person

    April 20, 2018
  3. Lynn, you tell your story so well. It is so heart tugging to see how isolated you were at this time. Your strength shines through it all. Blessings and hugs!

    Liked by 1 person

    April 20, 2018
  4. I hope your vows didn’t include “obey”. That is one thing I made sure of because I won’t be tied to a vow like that. You are two equals and it’s based on love not obedience.
    Leslie

    Liked by 1 person

    April 20, 2018
  5. You look so innocent. When I remember my time in the Middle East, I remember riding home one afternoon from the school where I worked and learning that the cleaning staff from other countries was locked in their room at night. In some parts of the world, there are still slaves and these are very wealthy countries and untouchable. The older you are, the more you know never to give up your American passport and be careful if you are married to a Middle Eastern man with different values. You remain property.

    Liked by 3 people

    April 20, 2018
  6. I see as you look back you know there were signs but anyone in any relationship glosses over all those things, be it big signs or little ones. I’m so glad you are free of him now❤️

    Liked by 2 people

    April 20, 2018
  7. How beautiful you are and were. You looked so happy and innocent in that photograph. Your situation was made ten times more difficult by his culture but every day there are women in our neighborhoods who are being subjugated in exactly the same way with controlling cruel men.

    Liked by 1 person

    April 20, 2018
  8. Who would have guessed what went from there…

    Liked by 1 person

    April 20, 2018
    • I guess there were so many signs but I never paid attention

      Like

      April 20, 2018
      • Lynn, love doesn’t make blind but it forgives so much. We don’t know the future and can only go from the present moment. Right then and there it was not predictable how it would turn out…

        Like

        April 20, 2018
  9. OMG…Lyn! That last line! (shaking my head). You looked so beautiful, happy, and full of hope in the photo. Christine

    Liked by 1 person

    April 20, 2018
  10. That last line…I will think about that one a lot. It’s no wonder you remembered those words and still do.

    Liked by 1 person

    April 20, 2018
  11. So he reveals that he is incapable of loving anyone.

    Liked by 1 person

    April 20, 2018
  12. Wow – I can’t even imagine what that must have felt like to hear….. You looked BEAUTIFUL and so innocent.

    Liked by 2 people

    April 20, 2018
  13. You were an innocent and he took complete advantage of you. He knew exactly what he was doing. An evil person through and through. Horrendous!

    Liked by 2 people

    April 20, 2018
  14. You look so pretty! and “I guess if I loved anyone it would be you”..says a lot! ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    April 20, 2018
  15. HUGS my friend, it has to be tough to revisit some of this. You are just as beautiful today as you were that day, nope I think your more beautiful, your soul shines out through your life!! xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxXXxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxkat

    Liked by 1 person

    April 20, 2018
  16. That last line…How many of us have looked back and said if we knew then what we know now.?..The innocence of love and hope and all it takes is the person we loved to take that away…Life can be so cruel at times…But you have come through and look what you have gained..You are so strong 🙂 xxx

    Liked by 1 person

    April 20, 2018
  17. If only we knew what the future would bring. Your wedding picture is beautiful, Lynn, and he didn’t see the wonderful woman who loved him. You traveled a difficult path, but you have prevailed and are still and will always be beautiful. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    April 20, 2018
  18. Wow! What a beautiful bride! And what a heinous betrayal for that bride! You amaze me that you came through all this and that you are still as so lovely and compassionate and sane!!! 🙂 ❤ xoxoxoxoxo

    Liked by 1 person

    April 20, 2018
  19. JC #

    Your writing is wonderful… jc

    Liked by 1 person

    April 20, 2018
  20. Such innocence and trust!

    Like

    April 21, 2018
  21. How we suppress warning signs when we are in love

    Liked by 1 person

    April 21, 2018
  22. You’re so beautiful! 🌸

    Liked by 1 person

    April 21, 2018
  23. I see your children in your face. Young. Beautiful. Lovely. He can’t take any of that from you. You have proven this.

    Liked by 1 person

    April 21, 2018
  24. Such a beautiful picture of you, Lynn. Sending hugs.

    Liked by 1 person

    April 21, 2018
  25. You looked absolutely beautiful in your wedding dress! For him to say something like that must have been hard to hear. I think he only loved himself. I’m so glad you are back here now and blogging or I would have never met you! xoxoxoxo

    Liked by 2 people

    April 21, 2018
  26. You were secretly married for 2 years? Wow, what a heavy burden you carried.

    Liked by 1 person

    April 21, 2018
  27. Those words are chilling. It’s so easy for us to ignore what we don’t want to see. But now your light shines brightly! (K)

    Liked by 1 person

    April 21, 2018
  28. Thank you. Lynn, for telling how it all began with him. You were a beautiful bride. I’m so sorry you had to go through all of that to become the exceptional writer and woman you are.

    Liked by 1 person

    April 21, 2018
  29. My goodness!

    Liked by 1 person

    April 21, 2018
  30. You were a beautiful bride. Too bad it didn’t work out as you had hoped, but am happy to know you’re no longer being abused by him!

    Liked by 1 person

    April 22, 2018
  31. The last line of your post sums up everything that was to come … heartbreaking. But wow, you are so beautiful in your dress, full of innocence and trust and hope.

    Liked by 1 person

    April 23, 2018
  32. Beautiful photo Lynn. As I was reading this piece I couldn’t help but feel my heart quicken knowing what I know about your situation. The end is chilling.

    Liked by 1 person

    April 23, 2018
  33. Lynz, you’re a truly amazing lady! Thanks for sharing your stories with the Senior Salon

    Liked by 1 person

    April 23, 2018
  34. The contrast between your lovely portrait and the last line is so stark. That must have been so stressful keeping the marriage from your parents. You have so much to be proud of, having gotten yourself and your children away from an abusive husband and father.

    Liked by 1 person

    April 27, 2018
  35. I appreciate your sharing the sad damper on this renewal of vows. He was a little cruel, in these words spoken on a special day.
    Your wedding photograph is beautiful. 💐
    You are so beautiful! ❤️

    Liked by 1 person

    April 29, 2018

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