Today marks the 8th year of our wedding that took place in Oakland, CA at the Oakland LDS Temple. This was attended by many family and friends of whom some drove many miles to attend. The typical male brain keeps a lot of the details kind of misty, but one memory I have is looking over the valley of the Bay Area, I noticed it was unusually clear and could see so far into the distance. Other times I’ve taken in that same view, there was fog or haze that made it difficult to see. I find that symbolic of the beauty of marriage. It sets so many things into place and eliminates so many things a man has to worry about. Don’t get me wrong, there are new things to worry about all the time, but just knowing that I know who I will be next to for my entire life and beyond is very comforting.
Some of you may know that shortly after our wedding, we were flown to Orlando, FL for our honeymoon which was to include some time at Disney World and many other local attractions. Somehow, the timing worked out that a certain world-changing event caused enough commotion and devastation that even hundreds of miles south of where it happened, we felt the impact. We went into Disney World and were quickly escorted out when they closed due to the disaster in New York. We struggled to find anything to do and were worried about ever getting home. Flights were grounded with no idea of when they’d be restored. It would have been horribly expensive to rent a car to drive cross-country, not to mention just brutal. Suffice it to say, that even though I have the aforementioned typical male brain, the events of our honeymoon are very clear in my mind. If the USA keeps having memorials and the media still brings 9/11 to the forefront every year, I’m set.
I “met” Rachel on an IRC Chat server about 16 years ago on the #Mormon chat room. For the years leading up to my mission, we chatted casually and were good friends. After my mission, I happened to hop back on to that IRC channel and just happened to bump into Rachel again. She also just happened to check out IRC to see if it was still like it was years ago. We got back in touch and spoke on the phone for quite a while. We eventually decided we should meet and did so at April General Conference in 2001. She thought she liked what she saw almost as good as what she heard and decided to move from Sacramento (where she had a killer job!) up to Tacoma, WA. I proposed in July and we were married in September. The rest is eight years of some of the hardest but most rewarding times of my life.
Rachel, I love you. You are my best friend. I can’t wait till we look again and 30 years have gone by and we’re a little older and are amazed at how fast that went by. I could not be who I am without who you are. Happy Anniversary, baby!