B and I have four children between us. Tomorrow, the first of them, her younger son, is getting married. At age 23, he is the youngest of the four.
That seems a little young to me, in this day and age, but he and his bride seem mature for their age, and well suited for one another. They grew up together, went to the same high school, and started going out together when they were freshmen in college. She transferred after her freshman year, in order to be closer to him, and now they've been living together for almost two years.
Some people balk at the idea of two people living together before they get married. But B and I are hardly ones to object, since we have been living together for eight years without benefit of marriage.
But, for us, there is no benefit of marriage. At least not financially. Neither one of us needs to piggyback on the other's medical insurance; and we'd have to pay more in taxes if we got married. We won't be having any more kids; so we don't need to make it official for that reason. In fact, if we were to get married it might just complicate things for our kids.
But B and I might get married anyway . . . eventually. Even though we're not raising a family, there's still something appealing about marriage, making the relationship official, for all the world to see.
Anyway, we're going off to watch our little boy (well, not my little boy, but I've known him since he was in 8th grade) march down the aisle.
They're doing it up pretty big -- with a minister, at a fancy wedding venue, expensive rings, with a rehearsal and rehearsal dinner and roughly 150 friends and family at the wedding. Flowers, professional photographer, gift bags, bachelor and bachelorette parties. All the women in the wedding bought a new dress for the occasion, and they are going together to get their nails, hair and makeup done.
It seems a bit over the top to me. But then, I got married in 1973 in a little church in the country with about 15 guests, and my bride wore flowers in her hair and we all went out to lunch afterwards. We were together for 28 years, raised two great kids, and had a pretty good run.
So if that simple little ceremony was good for 28 years, then B's son and his bride will be married forever.