Once upon a time there was a girl from the Land of Kansas who had given up on looking for Prince Charming. She’d travelled far and looked hither and yon which included Alabama, Georgia, most of Texas and even Illinois, but alas, her Prince was nowhere to be found.
Oh, she found a few men who claimed to be Charming, but like the Ugly Stepsisters in Cinderella, the shoe (or boot) just didn’t fit.
Discouraged, she packed up her castle and her young daughter and returned from the far country, going “home” to Kansas, certain that she could make a good life for her little Princess even if the Good Prince never showed up.
But little did she know that while she had been searching hither and yon, her One True Love had been waiting for her….in Kansas.
The girl bought a new castle and set about remodeling. She traveled the region helping to heal the sick and doing good. She had friends and her little Princess and she was content. She sometimes thought about her longing for Prince Charming, but decided her dream was just that…a dream and not at all reality.
The little Princess was not as content. She longed for someone to come along who could teach her things that only Princes and Kings could show her. She didn’t understand why a Prince had not come to their castle and shed tears to be a part of a “real” family.
It made the girl sad, but what could she do? She’d made up her mind to not settle for a Prince Charming Wanna Be. A few had shown up at her door, but it was soon evident that the Prince Charming shoe was not going to fit so she sent them on their way. She didn’t know how to explain it to her little Princess, so instead she explained it to her Fairy God Mother
who said that the King of Kings said we do not have because we do not ask. If that was the desire of her heart, she should ask the King.
So she did.
And…..a few months later, Prince Charming showed up.
Well, he called first since he didn’t really know her and vice versa, but they had a friend in common who’d given him her phone number. (Even Prince Charming needs a little help sometimes!) They talked for 2 1/2 hours and discovered that Prince Charming had been looking for a girl just like her but had almost given up and the girl had kept a small flicker of hope alive that maybe, somewhere, there was a Prince for her and by the time she hung up the phone, she believed she’d found him.
And there was a bonus. Prince Charming had two charming sons.
Ten days later, they met. It was all they had imagined. Somehow, despite the naysayers, they knew. The little Princess was happy and excited. The girl and the Prince were in love. The sons of the Prince were happy. Life was good.
After a few months they sent out invitations that said, “I have found the one my heart loves.”
Our little Princess has grown up and found her own Prince Charming. One little Prince will marry his Princess on May 6th. The other little Prince is all grown up, enjoying life and art. And, tomorrow, on March 1st, Kary and I will celebrate 20 years of wedded bliss sprinkled with laughter and tears.
I often write about Kary as Man of My Dreams….because he is,
When we met, we’d both failed at marriage. We both had worked to become better people. We both had decided that we would not settle for less than God’s best for us. We both didn’t want to see our kids hurt by a failed relationship. We both believed that love was possible and that a commitment to God and to the other person was the most important thing in a marriage. And we both believed that life should be filled with a whole lot of joy and fun.
And it has been.
What we didn’t know is that even when you work hard to fix yourself, some things can only be worked out in relationship with another. And that hurts sometimes. You can think you’ve “fixed” your selfishness when you live all alone! Ouch! We didn’t know that even when God puts you together, it doesn’t mean it will be easy. There is that whole “as iron sharpens iron” thing. We spent our first year knocking the dings out of that iron! We didn’t know that sometimes only our commitment to God and to our kids and to each other is all that would keep us together. There are those times in every marriage where you wonder how in the world you ended up with this crazy person sitting across the table from you, and those are the times you hang onto the belief that God is in this and won’t let you down. And it is worth it.
Every. Single. Time.
And we didn’t know just how much love and laughter and joy and fulfillment can be packed into One Life when you find the one your heart loves.
Marriage is so much more than a legality. When you pledge your lives and hearts together, when you enter into a Sacrament blessed by God, it is a supernatural thing. When we married, we had two parts to our ceremony: Kary and I joining together as a couple and a time where the Pastor prayed we’d be joined as a family and God has blessed that desire and we are so grateful. Blessed above and beyond everything we asked or imagined.
I didn’t think it possible to love Kary more than I did the day we said “I do” but the years have brought a breadth and depth to our love that I never dreamed possible. But all things are possible with God.
“Kary, it has been a fabulously grand adventure and I look forward to many more years of adventure and laughter with you, My Love.