That Moment When… #3 – On Marriage

That Moment When…

You realize that you will fulfill every vow you made at your wedding if you’re fortunate enough to stay married for the rest of your life.

I promise to love, honor, and respect you. I take you for my lawfully wedded wife, to have and to hold from this day forward, for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and health, as long as we both shall live.

While our wedding vows were not exactly the customary ones seen above, they were a variation of those.


Tim and Barbara Gatewood, 2008

Tim and Barbara Gatewood — 2008

I well remember that moment when I said the vows to my bride and that feeling of reality shifting into a new pattern as a result. Over the days and nights that followed, I began to figure out what that pattern might be, and during our honeymoon trip to Eureka Springs, I had time to really wonder at what I had gotten myself into and why she agreed to tie herself to me.

At several points in the early years of our marriage, when things were going so well, I imagined that we might live out our days without the “excitement” of the situations mentioned in our vows. On some level, I hoped that we wouldn’t have such a boring marriage as that.

Of course, the universe is perverse and heard that hope. Either that, or the vows are so widely used because they describe what is most likely to happen in a typical lifespan of a married couple.

Over the years, I’ve often thought I hadn’t done my wife any favors by marrying her. To this day, I still think she’s a much better person than I am and she makes me strive to be a better person just by being in my life.

Barbara Gatewood - 2008

Barbara Gatewood – 2008

We’ve now been married over 22 years and, along the way, I’ve found that everything said in those vows has come to pass.

  • We have loved one another and the life we’ve made together.
  • We have honored one another by putting our relationship ahead of any others.
  • We have respected one another by being honest. We know we can trust each other to call it as we see it.
  • We have been better and worse, individually and as a couple.
  • We have been richer and poorer, both in the material sense and in the emotional sense, as we’ve endured highs and lows in both.
  • We’ve been in sickness and in health, although the healthy parts have often been outweighed by the sick parts.

In short, the vows we made have turned out to be a foretelling of our life together and I wouldn’t have it any other way. It’s been my honor and privilege to be married to such a fine person, even with especially with all that it has entailed.

Barbara Gatewood 2004Barbara Gatewood – 2004 – at home

This article is part of the That Moment When… series, which is about turning points in life or in how we view life. If you’d like to contribute a guest post to this series, please include your contact info in your comments.

About Tim Gatewood

60+, male, widowed/single. Writer with a day job. Notary Public. #catdaddy Science fiction and fantasy fan, avid reader, Founder of the Darrell Awards. Author of _Getting Started As A Notary Signing Agent_ (available from Please be kind to one another.
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12 Responses to That Moment When… #3 – On Marriage

  1. helpingsoul says:

    Hi Tim,

    It is so nice to seeing such a deep love between you and your wife. It’s unfortunately so rare and I am happy to know you found that rare gift of a lifelong love.

    Sending you and your wife much love.

    And thanks of checking and liking my blog

    Liked by 1 person

  2. lbeth1950 says:

    Congratualtions on your marriage and happiness.


  3. Beautiful post. She shines. =) Thank you for the follow.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Anand says:

    I think that the word that describes this post is “warm.” It was warm and comforting – it didn’t just tell your story, it made me want to make my marriage happier too. Thanks for sharing.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Tim, this was a lovely and touching post…written from the depths of your heart. You and Barbara are lucky to have one another! Thank you for sharing your love. And thank you for the Mary Chapin Carpenter YouTube link at the end–somehow, I had never heard this John Lennon song before. It was beautiful.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Tim Gatewood says:

      Donna, thank you for your kind words. The Blogging101 class said to start a feature on your site and I mapped out over 15 topics that would work with this one, so I have been planning to write this for a while. Today just seemed like the right day to write it, so here it is. Glad it touched you. And, yes, that Mary Chapin Carpenter version of the John Lennon song is very moving and well done. I just love her voice.


  6. lafriday says:

    Lovely tribute, Tim.

    Liked by 1 person

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