Rare and principled

In case you didn’t know, my first husband was a police officer.

He was about as straight as they come.

No drinking.

No drugs.

HIGHLY possessive.

Also as it turns out, a bit on the combative side.

After 10 years of marriage, I called it quits.

I was expecting to find a partner who would give my boys another example of how a man behaves.

Less volatile.

Better communication.

I’ve now dated several men who I felt represented what I want my sons to grow up to be like.

Unfortunately, none of them have stuck around, but there’s still time.

In the last few years, since I’ve been going to Burning Man, I’ve met all variety of men.

Polyamorous.

Monogamous.

Divorced.

Separated.

In an “open” relationship.

Cheaters.

Successful businessmen.

Struggling artists.

Musicians.

Alcoholics.

I must say, I have found something appealing in most of the varieties that men come in.

But when it comes down to it, I’m still looking for a man who fits the bill.

I had a conversation with a friend lately where he professed his unending loyalty to his wife, which I thought was so sweet.

I don’t come across too many monogamous men.

“You are a rare and principled man,” I told him, giving his quite possibly THE BEST COMPLIMENT I CAN GIVE SOMEONE.

And that’s when it hit me.

What I’m looking for?

My own rare and principled man.

Problem solved!

It’s been almost 12 years since I divorced my ex-husband.

Invariably, the men I date ask me how long it’s been since my divorce and they are SHOCKED at the answer.

I always ask them the same question.

I have a theory that a man needs to be two years out from a divorce in order to actually be AVAILABLE for a new relationship.

At my aunt’s 50th birthday party, while lying in bed recovering from tequila, my aunt predicted that I was going to get married again someday.

It’s been 12 years.

I’m a little skeptical.

It’s not that I OBJECT to marriage.

I know at least two happy marriages for every marriage I’d characterize as unhappy.

Once upon a time I dreamed I’d get married and have more kids.

I was CONFIDENT that it would happen for me.

But it didn’t happen.

In fact, several rather shitty relationships materialized for me along with one decent one, which was sadly destined to fail.

Despite knowing myself a great deal better than I did at age 22 when I got married the first time, I’m not sure I trust my judgment.

Lord knows, I love me some lumberjacks but having a big chest and impressive facial hair does not necessarily mean he’s the perfect partner for me.

No.

The first time around I married chiseled cheekbones and a nice ass.

It makes for attractive offspring but not relationship longevity.

It would be AWFUL to go through another divorce.

And it occurs to me, if I NEVER get married again then I’ll NEVER risk getting another divorce.

Problem solved!

Moth to a flame

The organizational illness that has gripped me in the past is back in full force FORCING me to inventory all my Burning Man gear.

I’m not going to Burning Man for another 5 months!

But I am going to UnSCruz in May!

So the inventory will come in handy for that regional burn.

Can’t wait to go this year.

I’m 90% sure I’ll be camping with a BDSM camp.

Gasp!

I know!

No biggie.

There’s a wedding that’s going to take place this year and I am SO looking forward to all the festivities surrounding the marriage.

I’m so excited I went ahead and made a “BRIDE” hat from my stock of festival hats.

Isn’t it BEAUTIFUL?!?!

Can’t wait to gift it to the bride!

I’m also 90% sure that The Swede will be camping with me.

How fun will it be to show a little bit of the Burning Man culture to someone who has never experienced it before?!?!

We’ll have to get our drink on at Ali Bar Bar.

And dance at the music camps.

Then of course, there’s checking out ALL THE ART!

And the interactivity!

But my favorite part will always be THE FIRE. . . fire dancers, mutant vehicles, art installations, and more.

If there’s fire, I will gravitate to it.

Moth to a flame.

In more ways than one. . .

Marriage vs the alternative…

I spoke to a friend yesterday who told me in no uncertain terms that he had no intention of ever getting married again, “unless my partner is really committed to the idea,” he clarified.

He brought up a very good point for me… do I believe in the institution of marriage?

I’ve often heard that it’s far more romantic to remain unmarried and with somebody at will, rather than because you’ve made a legal commitment to one another .

And ultimately, that is how I see marriage – as a legal commitment between two people such that the government can increase their taxes and charge them to co-habit.

It’s not that I’m unromantic.

Okay, it’s true I’m not the most romantic woman on the planet. I’d rather be expressing my love and adoration through sexual favors than through romantic dinners for two or bouquets of flowers.

If you want to tell me you love me, wake me up in the middle of the night to knock out a piece. That’s love to me.

So I may be a tad on the unromantic side, but overall, what is the purpose of marriage? You can spend the rest of your life with someone without getting married. And you can divorce (at great cost) anyone you do marry. So there’s no guarantees with either form of coupled bliss.

That said, I’ll admit that I do have a secret “Wedding” Board and a “My Life Board” on Pinterest. And I had fun months ago posting all sorts of things to that Board – dresses, favors, fonts, invitations, pictures, reception ideas, etc. So part of me, in a way, longs to have a wedding and be a bride (yes, AGAIN). I think I love the idea of a man saying to me “I love you so much I need to spend the rest of my life with you. And I’ll prove it. Marry me.”

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But what does it say when a couple doesn’t get married? When they stay together and raise children without the benefit of vows? Aren’t we all amazed at their dedication? Aren’t we all wondering how they do it?

Some of the happiest couples I know aren’t married. Many have relationships that have lasted longer than my own 10 year marriage. And I really admire the dedication and love they show eachother – not because they have to but BECAUSE THEY WANT TO.

The bottom line is that I think that it’s super romantic to say to the other person, “I will love you for the rest of my life and I promise to not marry you but instead work hard for the rest of my life to make you happy and deserve you.”

A wedding is a party. A marriage is a contract. A partnership is love. I refuse to believe that commitment only exists when the couple is married. There are too many ways to commit yourself to someone to limit it to married couples. And in the end, isn’t that what we all want? A partner? Someone to love and be loved by? Forever.