As I reflect on my first year of marriage, I have joy-filled thoughts of my wedding day. I recall wearing that ivory dress, feeling like the prettiest woman in the room, professing my love and commitment to my partner of eight years. The dancing, partying and the drinks flowing until the wee hours of the morning; the excitement of the wedding night, finally being able to listen to Marvin Gaye’s “Let’s Get It On” and follow his directions without having to repent on Sunday.
I remember feeling overwhelmed with the happiness of finally being able to live together; the day my husband and his children moved their belongings into our house was one of the best moments of my life. Our first combined holiday celebration with our siblings, nieces and nephews interacting as family was beautiful, not to mention the attention of everyone doting over the newlyweds and expressing pure happiness for our union. We were finally a blended family and everyone around us was just as happy as we were.
After about a month or so of basking in the afterglow of the production and housing changes, things started to change without warning, our loving relationship was now filled with arguments and tears. It didn’t take long for my husband to start rearranging furniture, painting walls or to remove my books from the bookshelf and replace them with a surround sound system.