His parents have been divorced for ten years, and before that shouldn’t have been married at all. “They met at a knife fight when she was 17 and he was 20,” he told me. “I’m pretty sure I was conceived in a parking lot.” It is not the sentiment of someone who really believes in marriage. I, on the other hand, grew up with parents who used to stand hugging in the kitchen when they thought no one was looking. I know marriage as a long-lasting, loving commitment. He knows marriage as a situation of convenience that wears off eventually.
“Can I show you something?” I asked. “This might be totally cheese ball, and you might make fun of me, but to me… this is what marriage is.” He pulled up Danny and Annie on his iPhone. I saw his eyes blinking in the glowing light of the little screen as we watched in silence. He let out a barely audible sigh of surprise when Danny says, “I walked in with you, I walk out with you.”
He told me he thinks this situation is so rare, and happens only when two people really settle and feel lucky to be with anyone at all. “I think you’re very wrong,” I said quietly. His face softened. He watched my eyes for a minute and I could almost see the thoughts churning in his head. And then he let his walls down, just a little, for me. “Or maybe that could be us,” he offers. “But I won’t die on you.”