Do you know if it will work out?

Here is a question I often get when I chat with people about performing weddings. Do I know when I meet the couple, if it will work out? And it usually has a follow up question of: If I have reservations about the couple, would I refuse to perform the wedding ceremony?

My sweetheart and I went to see a priest thirty years ago to ask to be married. His first question to us was: Why do you want to get married? The answer that we gave was because we loved each other. Apparently, this was the right answer. We had other meetings with him to satisfy him of our intent. He had wanted us to attend some marriage preparation courses. That was logisitically unfeasible since she was in Ottawa and I was in graduate school in Waterloo.

We were married and had kids. I finished graduate school and found my first job where I travelled alot. She was a house mum since we couldn’t afford daycare. We bought our first house. At the ten year mark, after all these firsts, we renewed our wedding vows. It had been a rough decade. By this time we had sought counselling for some issues. We also took a weekend workshop that changed our lives because it taught us to communicate. It was the Myers-Briggs personality indicator test.

Our lives continued together with more changes and challenges. We moved back to Ottawa ten years ago in pursuit of a promising job. I was laid off six months later. And again three years later. Both times it was on April 1 – so it is a bad karma day for me and I take it off every year.

Throughout these tough times, we often would look at each other and personally ask ourselves whether we wanted to stay together. Each of us had thoughts that we couldn’t stand the other. But it always came down to this: Do I Love Her? We would always answer the same. I can’t imagine my life without her. I Love Her. She is my sweetheart.

So when I am asked these two questions, my answer is: no I can’t tell and I don’t even attempt a guess. Everyone deserves the opportunity to Love and to find happiness. I am not the one who determines the lifetime of that Love. Life will throw all sorts of unknown challenges at you and you are the ones who determine your journey as a couple. I think I am begining to understand the Bible passage; ” And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.”