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New Adventures Ahead, No Instructions Included…

On our wedding day I gave my husband a card that said, “New Adventures Ahead … No Instructions Included.”  We were facing uncharted waters together, jumping in to blending children, families and life histories together.  Our wedding was magical!  It was beautiful, fun, meaningful–everything you would want it to be.  The next day as we boarded the plane for our honeymoon we were full of deep joy.  Our new adventure had begun!

With wide grins we reached the travel counter for our cruise.  Little did we know the plans we had carefully crafted together were about to be yanked forcefully out of our hands.

“May I see your passports please?” the kind woman at the counter inquired.

Dutifully David handed over our documents.  We could see our ship floating majestically right in front of us, glistening in the Miami sunshine.  Distracted and excited, it took us a moment to notice the woman had stopped checking us in and was waving a supervisor over.  To my horror, the passport I had asked a friend to pack for me was an old expired one that was no longer valid.  We would not be permitted to board.

In one moment, all of our special plans evaporated before our very eyes.  Exploring the ship and grabbing lunch on the deck, gone.  Breaking open the chilled champagne and Pellegrino that waited for us in our room, gone.  Toasting our new marriage and sailing off into the sunset, gone.  Overwhelmed with anger, frustration and self-loathing, my head dropped into my hands and I started sobbing.  My honeymoon was ruined.

You know you’ve married the right guy when in the midst of the disappointment a gentle arm reaches around your shoulder, pulls you in close and tells you it’s going to be alright.  Before I knew it, he was on the phone moving mountains, changing arrangements, and shifting plans.  Within an hour my passport was being shipped (God love my parents!) and we were flying to another port the next day to meet our ship.  Never once did he try to make me feel bad.  He was reassuring, reminding me it was all going to be okay.  My tears begin to subside.

He continued, “Our focus shouldn’t be on a trip.  It’s just a trip.  Our focus should be right here,” he said, waving his arm gently between the two of us.  “And this…this is all good.  We don’t need a trip together to experience joy.  A trip is just one moment in time, and life is full of many, many moments.  This moment with you is all that matters.”

He pulled me in and held me close.  My shoulders began to relax; the stress started to melt away like a light snow on a sunny day.  Joy crept its way back into my spirit as I realized yet again this guy by my side is exactly the kind of person I want to be able to continue my life’s journey with. God was able to snatch away the victory from the jaws of defeat.