Marriage: Is It Just A Piece of Paper?
It was a beautiful, warm, sunny day twenty-six years ago that my husband and I got married. We were truly blessed and have been ever since. Even though I could not have children because of diabetic complications, our lives have filled up with the joy of many friends and different activities that we might not have been able to experience otherwise.
I have heard it said that a marriage certificate is not worth the paper it's printed on, or maybe it's only worth the cost of that paper. Of course, this is highly individual, depending upon the success or failure of the relationship, but today, I thought about that piece of paper as I walked into our guest bedroom.
On the wall of this "B&B room" as I've named it, hangs my grandmother's marriage certificate. It is a beautiful piece of art with its pink apple blossoms swirling around the pictures of some biblical people. On the top, are silver bells on which is written, "For better for worse, for richer for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish, till death us do part".
At the bottom, a bearded man in shepherd's clothing, is welcoming several people on camels. Below is written, "And Isaac lifted up his eyes and saw, and behold, the camels were coming. And Isaac took Rebecca, and she became his wife, and he loved her." Gen.
It is dated, "On the ninth day of October, 1912".
With our two biblical names, Ruth and David, I like to think we identify somewhat with this revered certificate and are connected somehow to the sancity of marriage through my grandparents.
I came upon this certificate while searching in my attic for a "Writer's Suitcase" for school. No one knew it was in the suitcase my parents gave me when my grandma died. The paper was actually ripped in places and my good friend, who is a framer, restored it and framed it in gold, matting it to match the wallpaper. It is an outstanding piece of art to which you are immediately drawn as you enter the room.
I have placed an exquisite, antique, porcelain wedding doll on the chair directly beneath it. And behind her gorgeous, ivory satin dress, I have slipped a faded, white photocopy of our plain, businesslike marriage license. The irony is not lost on anyone!
Luckily, for us, the "piece of paper" we got on July 12, 1980, means nothing - compared to the 26 years we have loved and been faithful to each other.
Mother of Invention, gazing thoughtfully at Isaac, Rebecca, and the apple blossoms, thanking my lucky stars.