“We Should Get Married”

Featured image: Wedding Photo, 1981. (Photo by Jenny Cain)

We were married in the small log home we’d built by hand. In the wedding photos, we stand in front of a wall of rough pine logs lined with books. A few family members and friends were in attendance. Our dog and cat wandered among the guests. Our friend Larry, a Lutheran minister, conducted the ceremony.

            In one picture, my hands wrap around a small bouquet. I’m smiling. Dick stands stiffly erect, his face concentrated, serious.

            “What a good thing,” I think now, “that he was so serious, so present”—because his first marriage had ended in divorce. After fifteen years, that marriage had failed. As we spoke our vows, Dick was resolute; this marriage would not fail.

            However, as his dementia worsened, Dick would ask me, “Are we married?” Sometimes he’d add, “I love you. We should get married.”

Anne-Marie Erickson

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