1. I can’t believe I ate the whole thing.

2. I can’t believe it’s not butter.

3. I can’t believe I’m going to get married again.

Yeah. So here’s one unconventional aspect of this don’t-call-it-a-wedding-blog: the dark side. I’ve been married once before, without success, and can’t think too hard about this next bite at the apple without being reminded of the first. Which means I’ll probably be talking about it here.

I debated long and hard about whether, and how much, to discuss my parcourse of the Bad Place on a blog meant to look optimistically toward a brilliant future. Why summon shadows on a sunny day? Who wants to read depressing stories about past misfortunes that will. not. happen again?

On the other hand, is it possible for me to embrace, uncritically and with unalloyed joy, an institution which has been no friend to me in the past? Egads, marriage sucked. Not just my particular marriage to The Horror! The Horror!, with its smashed furniture, slammed doors, snarling rages and ice-cold glares and the ever-disemboweling “look what you made me do,” but the legal state in general, the sublimation and subjugation and indenture of a wife’s personhood to the whims of her Head of Household. The thought of binding myself to another has become terrifying. What if I want to escape? But then, why should I? But then, why did I?

& is magnificent. He doesn’t have a malcontent bone in his body. He humbles me with his support and accommodation of the moods and funks and consumptive flashbacks which still beset me. He did not wince when I told him I was having difficulty blogging about our upcoming nuptials, or even thinking about them in any significant detail, without feeling a visceral twist of sub-subconcious trepidation: not again. no. not again. I can’t go back there again. never again. Of course I’m not going back there again; we are going forward, this is a new and different place from the Bad Place, and & is a hundred times the man of my finest dreams. But my autonomic nervous system hasn’t caught up with reality quite yet.

& understands. & has no objection to me writing whatever I want here.

If there’s one person on earth who can reclaim/redefine/redeem the concept of marriage in my mind, it’s &.

While I’m disinclined to unpack too much of my baggage in public — not even my dearest friends knew of The Horror! The Horror!, until the bitter end — as we move forward here, I’m necessarily going to be stuck confronting unplumbed and unpurged memories which should not be left to fester. Better to deal with it now. Confront these things as they come up, flush out the debris, delouse and disinfect the wounded soldier of a soul that has come limping, bloody but unbowed, into the gleaming hospital of this new relationship.

And also, abuse metaphors. Because I do that no matter what I’m talking about.