Saw a little bit of the royal wedding coverage this morning as I was getting ready to go into the office. It would be easy to be cynical about the whole production and wonder how long the new couple will last. After all, in addition to the normal pitfalls any marriage faces, William and Kate have the burden of living very public lives and knowing that the world is watching and interpreting every word and action. And obviously, wealth and position do not compensate for life in a fish bowl.
But in spite of all of that, shouldn’t they have the chance to write their own fairy tale and happily-ever-after life, if it’s possible to achieve that? Don’t all couples face challenges? If wealth and youth don’t guarantee success, neither do they promise failure. The reality is that whatever the statistical chances of this marriage lasting, only the two of them can make it work, or cause it to fail. Everyone else is an onlooker.
Fairy tales endings are hard to come by in the real world. But in spite of that, we keep looking. Maybe that’s why so many people are drawn to the display of ancient ritual and tradition, watching the parade of family and ceremony that symbolize faith: faith two people have in each other and in themselves, to succeed at this thing called marriage. To beat the odds. To show the cynics. To live happily ever after.
Good luck to them. They’ll need it. Marriage…any marriage…is work. It’s also pleasure, joy, fulfillment, companionship, support, love, romance. But bottom line, it is work. There’s no escape from that. Maybe that’s where the fairy tale falls apart so often. Couples expect all of the good stuff to carry them, and forget that the work never ends, is never finished, is always waiting the next day.
Here’s hoping they understand that ever after began today, this morning. Here’s hoping they don’t get lost in the routine, the pressures, the public face, in others. Here’s hoping they write their own fairy tale, and it ends happily ever after, as all stories with a prince and princess should.