Marriage – more than a legal nicety
I wasn’t sure what would follow when one of my co-workers opened a conversation with that question. It was near midnight and we were the only two left in the newsroom, so there was no avoiding it.
“Sure,” I replied skeptically.
“Why do you want to get married again?” she asked.
I broke into a relieved smile. This was an easy answer.
I was recently engaged and anyone who knew me well enough over my post-divorce years knew I wasn’t the biggest advocate of marriage.
But that all changed when I met Mister Right.
And, so, I explained in my answer to her that it wasn’t so much about wanting to get married again but about wanting to get married to him – the man I waited 40-plus years to meet.
Our conversation stretched into the night as I shared the many (good, bad and really bad) experiences that helped shape the tune I was now singing.
In the seven months between that night and my wedding this past July, I never questioned my reasons for wanting to marry again but I did start to wonder what difference it might actually make. We had purchased a new home together, our children were living together harmoniously and we even made room for a puppy.
“It’s not going to change anything,” I’d tell people. “It’s just a piece of paper.”
I’ve never been more elated to say how wrong I’ve been.
From the beautiful sunset beach ceremony to the hours of dancing that stretched well into the night with people who came from near and far to share in our joy, my wedding day was an absolute dream.
But marriage is about more than just a fairy-tale wedding.
That was clear in several defining moments that day.
The moment my daughter and son stood on either side of me, put one arm into each of mine and walked me down the aisle. They beamed with pride. I cry every time I look at the picture.
Then there’s the moment my husband started reading his vows. I’m supposed to be the writer in the family but there he stood reading words he wrote so emotionally charged that even he couldn’t get through them without choking up. There wasn’t a dry eye among our guests. My daughter leaned into me at one point and whispered, “I think I’m crying more than you.”
The pivotal moment, though, was when our combined four children stood up at the reception, microphone at hand to deliver the toast. Each of them read their pre-written reasons for why they were so happy for us, our union and our future together.
And there lies my answer, more apparent than ever before.
Marrying again isn’t just about a piece of paper. It’s about becoming a family.
Catherine Anaya anchors CBS 5 News weeknights at 5, 5:30, 6 and 10 p.m. She is a mother of two, marathon runner and motivational speaker. Reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org; connect with her on Facebook, Twitter and at CatherineAnaya.com.