Eleven Years Ago…


     Eleven years ago today, I married the love of my life and it was the beginning of an adventure that continues today.  These days, we are the proud parents of two wonderful and beautiful boys, homeowners, and firmly embedded into the American Dream.  However, every great story has a beginning and ours is pretty unconventional to say the least…

    Although many of you have heard me state previously that this is my second marriage, it is not something that I discuss very often because the first marriage is in the past and, to be quite honest, I don’t feel that it is generally even worthy of wasting too much time talking about.  You see, I like many other people, married my High School sweetheart first because I was drunk with all of the fantasies and romantic notions that young women sometimes have about their first loves.  Unfortunately, reality kicked in rather quickly and we both realized that we were too young and inexperienced and that we were totally unprepared to take on the responsibilities of being married.  The romance was longer than the marriage itself which lasted a mere eleven months.

    At age 20, I found myself divorced and living back in my parents’ house while attending college.  This arrangement did not work out for very long because my parents still tried to impose house rules and curfew on me.  I thought these rules were ridiculous and I felt that I didn’t have to follow them because I was a divorced woman who had been out on her own and was above being told what to do.  As a result of this, I eventually moved in with my Aunt as I finished my last year as an Undergraduate student.  It was during this time that I met my husband.  The story of how we met is another blog post in itself so you will have to stay tuned for that one.  Since today is my anniversary, I want to focus on how we got married.

    After dating for almost a year, we got some bad news.  My husband’s mother had been diagnosed with breast cancer so I accompanied her to a number of appointments including the one where they biopsied the lump in her breast.  During the biopsy, she mentioned to me that she thought we should get married since we had been living together for a number of months and, due to her religious affiliations, she thought we were living in sin.  Later that day, I commented to my husband what she had discussed with me and told him that I was never planning on getting married again after the horrible experience that I had dissolving my first marriage.  To my great surprise, he promptly got on one knee and told me that his mother was right and that he wanted to marry me.

    Now, I would like to say that I got teary eyed and said, “yes!” , however, that is not exactly how it went down.  I asked him to get up and sit next to me because I wanted to explain to him that I was scared of getting married again, that I didn’t want to have my heart broken again, and that I never wanted to go through another divorce in my entire life.  He spoke to me and said things to me that I cannot even remember now but, what I do know, is that I believed him and believed in us and I can definitely remember the way that he made me feel like he would never hurt me.  So, against my better judgment, I agreed to marry him.

    My first marriage was very traditional and conventional with all the trimmings including bridesmaids, limos, souvenirs, and a wedding photographer.  My second marriage was much less conventional but I will never forget it.  We actually decided to get married a week after he proposed to me.  The reason for this is that his mother was hospitalized due to the cancer and she wanted to see us married in case she didn’t make it.  We invited our close family members to the hospital and we were married by a pastor in front of his mother in her hospital room.  All of the doctors and nurses who worked on that floor attended as well.

    Here we are eleven years later and I would not change a single thing that we did to get married or to get to where we are today.  My Mother In Law survived her breast cancer journey and has been cancer free for the last eleven years.  We have two beautiful sons who make every single day of our lives worth living.  Lastly, we are still very much in love with one another.  I wish I could say that we love each other as much as that fateful day that we got married in our local hospital, however, saying that would be a lie because our love has grown much bigger since then.  Although we have had our “bumps” along the way over the years, we are truly 50/50 partners in this marriage.  Anyone who tells you that they have never had any problems in their marriage is not being truthful with you because marriages require a lot of work and dedication from both people and things rarely play out the way you want them to go.

    Many people have asked me over the years what the secret to my long and happy marriage has been.  My answer is always simple and it is always the same one, I like my husband.  You see, many people love each other yet, this is not always enough to keep couples together.  Now “like” is something that lasts forever.  At the end of the day, my husband is my best friend and I genuinely like him as a person.  He is someone that I would want to be friends with and spend time around even if he wasn’t my husband.  The fact that I am madly in love with him is just an added bonus.

© 2010, Tough Cookie Mommy. All rights reserved.


  1. Your story moved me greatly & really brought home the truth of the this quote “A second marriage is the triumph of hope over experience”- Samuel Johnson

    You & your husband are a stunning couple, may all your days together be filled with continued triumphs, Happy anniversary 🙂

    • Thank you, Jean! That is exactly one of the reasons why I like sharing my story, so that other women will have hope after a failed relationship or marriage. I’m so glad that you enjoyed the post.

  2. Congrats on your anniversary! Love is Grand:)

  3. Y’all are BEAUTIFUL. Continued blessings to the both of you. Yay Maria!

  4. That was such a beautiful story♥ I feel like these days so many couples get divorced, and being married for eleven years is amazing! Thanks so much for sharing your story 🙂

    ♥Happy Anniversary♥


    • Hi, Ai. I am so glad that you enjoyed my story. It is true that we hear so much about couples that don’t make it and rarely hear about the ones that do. Thank you so much for your well wishes.

  5. That’s such a sweet story! Happy anniversary!

  6. Congratulations on 11 wonderful years! I hope that you have many more years of happiness! From the sounds of it you will!

    Like you, I’m on my 2nd marriage as well but it all started and ended much differently. The good thing is that we both learned from our mistakes and are in better places.

    • Thank you, Jackie. You are right, thank goodness we learned and we moved on to bigger and better things. It is hard to start over, especially when you have the fear that things will turn out badly again. It is wonderful when life proves you wrong and everything works out for the better.

  7. Sounds to me that you aren’t in a 50/50 marriage, but instead a 100/100 marriage. And what a wonderful story. And don’t feel too bad about the MIL believing you were living in sin, the first time I met my future MIL, I was fourteen years old and she caught me crawling out the window of future hubbys bedroom. LOL!

    • Hi, Jia. Wow, talk about making a first impression! Actually, I have a funny story from the first time I met my MIL too. After I divulged to her that I had been married before, she promptly told me not to fornicate with her son because, even if she wasn’t watching, Jesus was watching. You can imagine what I thought at that moment…I’m so glad you enjoyed the story and even more glad that you decided to stop by.

  8. Happy anniversary! I think that is important to like your mate. I don’t know what I would do if I didn’t like my husband!

    • Thank you, Friend. Yes, it would be horrible to be married to someone that you can’t stand. Unfortunately, many couples do live this way and it is really sad for all involved, especially the kids.

  9. What a beautiful story . . . it is always so heartwarming to hear about positive, loving relationships. Happy Anniversary Maria . . . congratulations on 11 years!

    You are so right about “liking” him . . . you gotta be friends first 🙂

    Have a wonderful weekend!


    • Hi, Gina. I’m so glad that you enjoyed our story. Retelling it really makes me count all of my blessings. Being friends is so important to the longevity of the relationship, I completely agree with you. Thanks for passing by!

  10. Hi, I’m passing by and following from “Fabulous Friday Follow”.

    When you get a chance, please check out my blog and follow me back?


  11. Congratulations on your anniversary! We also went the unconventional route with our marriage and are so glad we did! The connection in the relationship is so much more important than the ceremony. How wonderful you could share your day with your mother-in-law 🙂


    • Chris, that is so true, the connection between the two people is what really matters not how extravagant the ceremony is. She was really thrilled that she was able to see us get married even though she was sick and going through a rough time.

  12. First I want to wish you the best in life.. And congratulations..
    I love your blog and look forward to reading more..

    I am now following you on Facebook, Networked Blogs, Twitter and blogger..
    Please Follow back..
    Thanks and the best of luck

  13. Happy Anniversary, Maria! You are a beautiful couple!

    Your story made me got all teary eyes, thank you for sharing this. It gives me hope somewhere in my broken heart that there is still hope and it is okay to trust again. I never had the traditional white dress, veil, limo and all..those were just remnants of my childhood memories. Thanks again, Maria!

    • Aww, Maureen, I know you are going through a difficult time and trying to heal your heart. Trust me, you are destined to find love again in the future because you are absolutely amazing. Any man would be lucky to have you by his side as a partner. I’m glad that my post made you hope for a brighter future full of love. Sending you big, big hugs.

  14. what a lovely story. congrats!

  15. Beautiful post – congratulations to you and your husband. 11 years – what a milestone! Glad I found your blog.

    • Hi, Micaela. I am so glad that you decided to stop by. Yes, I also think that eleven years is quite an accomplishment when you think of the state of marriages these days. Thank you for your warm wishes.

  16. What a wonderful story. Happy Anniversary hon!

  17. You guys are a beautiful couple.

  18. You hit the nail right on the head. I couldn’t agree with you more. Liking your husband is the key. Loving him is just an added bonus.


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