Friday, January 22, 2010

Being the 3rd wife...

Yes, I am the third wife.  Or at least I will be come April 16th.  Bet you didn't know that?  Though I have a 15 year old daughter (well, turning 15 in February), and am a single mom, I've never been a wife.  My daughter's father and I lived together but never married.  And at 26, I was engaged, planned most of the wedding, and then broke off the relationship right before I dropped the invitations in the mail.  So I've been close...had the 'family,' but never a marriage.

Though wedded bliss will be totally new to me, it is not so new to Mr Fix It.  He has been married before...twice.  The first time he was married I refer to as the 'shotgun marriage' that didn't count.  Mr Fix It moved to Australia in his late 20's and met a woman there.  I think he only lived there for like 3 months before moving back to the states.  But for whatever reason, he married that girl.  I can't even remember what type of wedding they had...I think he said they did a civil type ceremony and then had a 'reception' for the family back home.  Anyway, for whatever reason, she ended up moving back to Australia and they had a long distance marriage for over a year I think.  Mostly phone calls.  Then he met his second wife and eventually got divorced from the Australian.

With his second wife, they dated for three years and then were married for six.  She ended up having an affair - Mr Fix It never confirmed it but there were comments from her co-workers about her spending a lot of time with a man at work.  Mr Fix It asked her to stop spending so much time with him and then while he was away once she told him she was hanging out with friends at his house, got drunk and slept on his couch.  That didn't go over well.  They had a lot of problems regarding communication - she was physically distant which led to him being emotionally distant and the relationship just crumbled.  One day when Mr Fix It was out of the country, he returned to find that she had moved out.  Later, he found out that she ended up marrying the man he assumed she was sleeping with.

As a Christian, Mr Fix It was devastated by the divorce.  He went into a very deep depression for many, many months.  I met him about a year after their separation when a friend encouraged him to start dating again and he signed up on http://www.match.com/.  They were just signing the divorce papers when he and I started dating. 

Needless to say, it's strange to think of myself as a 'third wife.'  It doesn't really mean much to me since I've never been married, but I know that Mr Fix It will probably bring in a lot of doubts and fears from his past experiences.  Though he knows I am a completely different person than his ex-wife, he also struggled to decide whether or not to marry again.  This is why I *never* brought up the subject of marriage during our dating relationship.  He would talk to me about it and say that if we ever got married and something happened to where we divorced, that would be it for him...he'd never marry again.  I would lovingly tell him that I never plan to divorce so he would be stuck with me forever.  :)

He used to tell me that he was secretly 'testing' me to see whether or not I was marriage material.  Though I sometimes felt like I should be offended by that kind of comment, I also knew that this was part of his emotional baggage from two failed marriages.  But finally, when we had been together for almost 5 years, he decided to pop the question.  It was so special to me...it meant he knew that this was it for good.  And I knew it, too. 

On our wedding day, we'll have been together for six years.  I'll be 37 years old and Mr Fix It will be 47.  We have been through a ton of relationship issues, dysfunction and mistakes on both of our parts in our past.  And I think that if we had met 10 years ago, we never would be getting married...for it's the path we've walked and the lessons we've learned that have grown and matured us to become the people we are today.  The people who truly recognize and appreciate the good in each other and also have compassion and grace towards the faults in each other. 

I have no doubt that we will be together forever...we share a lot of the same values, politics, beliefs, faith and we have learned to work at communicating with honesty, respect and love.  We are not perfect, we have our moments of failure and fights.  But we also are humble enough to be willing to change and apologize and to sacrifice and compromise for one another.  I have never known a love like this and though Mr Fix It is nothing like the man I would have expected to end up with, thanks to God, he is everything I never knew I needed in a husband. 

I am so excited to be his third (and final) wife.  I can't wait to have him as my first and only husband.

What about all of you?  Any of you dealing with past marriage or relationship issues or fears that you've had to work through on your way to the altar?

16 comments:

Jenn said...

That's so sweet! Your so positive about his past and that's great, no need to be bitter!

Sarah M said...

We are both on the encore side of the fence as well!! It's very difficult sometimes, but I think we deal more with each other's issues than our own . . .

Patience said...

L and I both had gotten out of serious relationships just prior to meeting one another and this has created some tension in our relationship during the early stages. His ex still calls him on his birthday and such and it drives me batty, but I am happy to have had our relationships in the past because we both learned what we did and did not want. God has truly blessed me with a wonderful man who is truly my soul mate.
You and Mr. Fix It are going to have an amazing marriage :)

Gonna Be His Mrs. said...

Very similar to me and my Hunny. I was married once, but not to the father of my kids. I really don't even count it because it lasted 9 months...lol! And we got married in our apartment. I call it a "practice" marriage. I was only 21.
I too was a single parent all my life, and my girls are now 30 and 28.
Like your Mr., this will be my Hunny's 3rd marriage also. His first lasted 10 years, and he had 3 children with her (all grown now) and I get along with them AND his ex-wife.
His 2nd marriage was a curse. The lady is a complete nut-job psycho, compulsive liar and evil control freak. Unfortunately, they had a child together which she manipulates to hate me and my daughter....such a long story...but yes, bottom line is that he too was very "nervous" at the thought of getting married again. Especially because of his LAST psycho wife. But now...after 8 1/2 years of being together....I believe his fears have been extinguished, or at the very least....lessened.
We are both very excited about our upcoming marriage and KNOW that this is IT. =)
Being patient, understanding and sympathetic really does work.

very married said...

wow - it's so wonderful to hear more about your story!

Alicia said...

What an amazingly awesome and thoughtful post. Thank you so much for sharing. This is the second marriage for my FI and I. We've too battle so much in this relationship and our previous ones.

It looks like you guys are going to do just fine! Best wishes!

SG said...

Third time's the charm! :)

I met my fiance on match.com too. Thank God for the internet!!

Em said...

I love learning more about brides and their "actual" selves as opposed to their "bridal" selves. This was a really really great post :) You and Mr. Fix It seem to have a really great foundation and I can tell you're both in it for the long haul.

This is the first marriage for both Josh and me. My dad has been married twice (and had me with my mom but they never married.) Because my marital influences have been crappy at best, I'm lucky to have a pretty positive outlook toward marriage. I'm not naive enough to think that divorce wont happen to me, but I'm optimistic enough to believe that Josh and I will be together forever.

Leesie said...

Wow what a story. Sounds like 3rd time really is the charm. I'm so glad it worked out for both of you and that neither of you settled. My hubs and I met on match also.

Chocolate Lover said...

I think you are so right about things likely turning out differently if you'd met 10 years ago. Our past experiences shape us so much that without them we would be different people. I love your attitude bout being the final wife! I totally understand that he needed time and it sounds like you were there for him showing him that you could be trusted with his heart. You guys sound great together!
Mr. Milk and I both had negative relationship experiences before we met each other and have also grown together into the couple that we are today. I too believe that without all of those experiences we wouldn't be where we are now.

honey my heart said...

it is so wonderful to hear how you found someone who is right for you. so happy for you :)

Mrs T said...

It's great that you've had to go through things to get to the marriage. If you've weathered some storms already, you'll be better prepared for any bumps you may come across in married life.

So excited for both of you.

Westside Wedding said...

This was a beautiful post, full of truth and the love that you two share. I'm going to be 32 & FI 34 when we get married, for us being the age that we are has a lot to do with why our relationship is wonderful & why we are so sure of our marriage. If we had met when we were younger we would have messed it up, we both still had so much to learn. We met just at the right time & always say to each other "fate would have it so" - because it was fate that brought us to each other. The relationships that we were both in helped us become the people we are today, we learned from them, learned what we liked, what we didn't like & what we could put up with & what we wanted in "the one".

Kristy said...

first of all i have to say, thank you for such an honest and open and vulnerable post. although i can't relate to being a "third wife" i know i can relate to the baggage of past relationships that ultimatley affect the one you are in at the moment. i've had more than my share of broken hearts and my guy has had a past where he was cheated on and publicly decieved - and of course this made us both cautious coming into our relationship. In the end i think it has made us so much closer and perfect for each other to have found love, safety, trust and constant communication with each other because our eyes were opened by our heart aches. your perspective is really inspiring and i truly believe that your seperate paths is what has prepared you to be perfect for each other now, so congratulations to you both for finding love and happiness in each other - even though it may have taken a lot of work to get here - you finally are and that alone is worth the celebration of a life time!

PartyPlannerGal said...

Thanks for sharing this with us. It's so great that you have a good attitude toward his past, and that you are bringing so much positive energy to the table. And you know what they say, "the third time's the charm!" I think your shared faith will also help you greatly in your marriage. And I've said it before, but I LOVE that he wants to have a family prayer with you and your daughter on the first night you spend in his home.

Recession Bride said...

So happy that you are both on the same page and know what you are getting into. My future brother-in-law just jumped into his third marriage after being together less than a year, just after his second divorce was finalized, and they are already having issues about his past relationships.

It sounds like you guys have a solid foundation and a super-healthy outlook. Your marriage will be wonderful!

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