Have you ever known a thing to be certain even though it went against the evidence and your own common sense? I was resolved to marry her from the very first day we met. There were no alternatives to consider, it was my decision and on this single point I did not falter. I pursued her as if it were a state of emergency. My desperation did not appeal to her sensibilities and she was unusually sensible for a child. She found me uncultured and uncouth. My advantages could not possibly be understated. I, being a boy of meager means and manqué abilities, had nothing to offer her save for a heart wrung many times over with the stress of its own failings. Each time she would clench her delicate fist in my direction, I’d run away, a secret smile on my face. So long as I could provoke her the possibility of reciprocation remained.
Then suddenly after years of red tape she agreed to let me take her on a date. We were 16 and equally inexperienced. Everything I understood about love came from my maternal grandparents who’d managed to keep their marriage together through war, infidelity, and the death of three children. By the time I met them their relationship had reached a stage which I can only call Nirvana. I took their word as testament. My parents, on the other hand, barely spoke and when they did it was to shout absurdities at each other. They were quick to give advice, especially my mother, but I shut them out entirely. Whatever unknowns we faced I felt certain that we would overcome them. As the years rolled by we spent a lot of time weighing the advantages and disadvantages of various issues our marriage included. Now that we are old and have reached our own Nirvana-like state I am glad that I held fast when the tides courted and seized us. What a miracle, love, when given space to unfold.