After four years of courtship, Norm graduated college and accepted a job in Virginia.
I stayed in Louisiana to finish my bachelor’s degree and make preparations for a wedding that would be held far from our home state.

My cousin hosted my wedding shower in her home in River Ridge, Louisiana. That fruit bowl is one of the few wedding gifts that survived Hurricane Katrina –
a trial that Norm and I would face together many years in the future.

After I graduated, I moved to Virginia and found a job, though the pickings were slim for a French major –
not as big a demand on the Eastern Seaboard as there was in Louisiana. 
We didn’t want a big wedding, so we held the ceremony and reception in the townhouse.
We invited our closest friends and family.

The rehearsal dinner was hosted by Norm’s parents in a beachfront restaurant.
My whole crazy family was there, yet Norm still didn’t back out!

I was only twenty-two years old when I got married – pretty young by today’s standard.

But by the time we got married, I had already been in love with Norm for four years,
and I was really mature when it came to my life’s plan.
I had always known that I wanted to be married –
I was just fortunate to find my good man at such a young age.

It’s been many, many years since we were married.
We started off with nothing but love, but all these years later –
after losing almost every material thing we owned –
I know that nothing else in our life really matters anyway.

Like any other married couple, we’ve had tough times and easy living. We’ve had joy and we’ve had sorrow.
But walking through life hand-in-hand with Norm has made life’s journey  more sweet than sour.
I married the perfect man for me. No, he’s not perfect – but he’s the perfect man for me