I was 16 years old when Christian asked me to marry him, he was 18. My parents agreed to allow us to get married and we began announcing to everyone that we were going to take this step.
To put it mildly, his parents and older brothers were not happy. Most of our friends thought we were crazy! We were young and in love and nobody was going to stop us! We were determined to go for it and prove the whole world wrong. Teen-agers can get married and stay married! It would be a piece of cake. Right!?
My mom and dad took me to a local store in town that sold wedding gowns and I made Christian tag along with us. At that time I was very much into having things my way and doing things in a traditional manner was the furthest thing from my mind! So, yes, Christian helped me pick out my wedding dress! The only thing I cared about was that he was the one I was going to marry and live happily ever after with...
Like I said earlier, my soon to be in-laws were not very happy and decided that if we went along with this crazy idea of getting married they would not be coming to participate in the wedding. We continued on with our plans and the next thing on the agenda was wedding rings. Christian was unemployed at the time and so was I so he decided to sell his car to buy our wedding set. We went to the local jeweler an picked out a set of 3 rings (yep, at this point still didn't have an official engagement ring) and paid for them with the entire check he had gotten for his car!
We had rings and I had a dress, what else do you need to get married? Oh yea! We need a minister to marry us! Our Pastor at church refused to do the ceremony because of our age and he also felt led to decline since Christian's parents were not in agreement with our plans. Next, we asked another Pastor who had just recently married my cousin. He was also a close friend of Christian's mom and considered doing the service. We met with him a time or two for counseling but after much prayer and consideration felt led to decline marrying us, too. He did, however, offer us his church to hold the ceremony so we at least had a venue.
At this point we are only days away from getting married and we needed to find someone or there would be no wedding! We wound up having a friend refer someone that actually ended up being our groomsman's grandfather! So, finally about 4 days before the wedding we were all set! Phew!
The day of our wedding I woke up to find that I had lost my voice! Yep! Completely gone! A squeak of a whisper was all I had. After making a few cups of hot tea with honey and lemon there was no more time to waste and it was time to get my hair fixed. By the time I left the salon and made it to the church my hair had already started to fall. Lets just say I was not happy with the looks of it but come hell or high water, we were getting married!
After getting dressed and ready to go my cousin goes to check to see if we are ready to start. Needless to say she came back to tell me that there was no one at the church, other than a few family members. I probably could count on both hands how many people were there! How can this be? Oh yea! No one agreed with us, so no one came to support us.
Most people don't know our beginning. Most people just know us as the 2 people who have been together "forever". I guess we are just both stubborn like that! Neither one of us are quitters and once we were married Christian's his oldest brother and his mother were our biggest supporters.
We made a trip to Long Island, New York in July after we were married because the same year his parents had celebrated their 40th anniversary. Christian's family held a huge party in their honor that was a surprise to his parents. It was an awesome thing to be a part of. Christian's brother even took us out to a local diner for coffee to let us know that they all had our best interest at heart. They didn't want us to get married but now that we were, he never wanted to hear that we were going to end our marriage. There was no option in ending this marriage that we had chosen to enter into. I never knew how hard it would be to follow this small piece of advice!
I thought about all of this this year since we made a trip to Long Island and celebrated our anniversary in New York this year. Here we were 17 years later and were spending it with all the people we didn't get to share our wedding day with. It was bitter sweet. I don't talk about our wedding much because a lot about that day still stings after all these years. One day I hope that we will have a day that we do actually get to celebrate our day with everyone that we love and hold dear to our hearts. We will be missing Christian's parents, of course, but I know they will be there in our hearts.
Our anniversary day was spent driving down to the end of Long Island to Montauk Point to see the light house. We made a few stops along the way, stopping for pictures and of course for some New York bagels to bring home to our kids. We had a great day just hanging out and spending time together. It was a great trip and we did a lot of reminiscing about how far we had come, together.
Here we are, March 4, 2012, at Montauk Point ~ Long Island, New York
Christian Paul Marchelewski Sr., you are still the one <3
I love you!