We Wish you a Married Christmas
Final entry in the TC log for 2002, and what a marvellously...palindromic year it was, particularly on February 20th. It is, however, another 20th - July - that sticks in my mind, as I made the final step in transition from lone wolf, confirmed bachelor and anti-social animal in general to... [shock! horror!] a family man.
How things have changed. I stumbled across an earlier editorial recently, dating back to the earliest dawn of prehistory - all the way back to 1998, to be precise, in which I wrote: "The prospect of marrying someone...seems highly strange...and as for the prospect of kids, I'm firmly with Amanda Donohoe in Lair of the White Worm on THAT topic." But here I am, married, with children. And odder still, the happiest I've ever been.
I will admit that the marriage itself is something of an irrelevance, in that neither it, nor anything else, could make me more loyal, faithful or in love with Chris than I am anyway. However, the immigration people do not hand out green cards on the basis of "undying adoration" - though given the current backlog, I'm not scheduled to get mine until 2005 anyway. And marriage has a nice ring of permanence to it, even if I still look at envelopes addressed to "Mr and Mrs. McLennan" and want to forward them to my mother and father.
I've even settled into the parenting thing with less trouble than I thought. All you have to remember is that children are just like little adults - except with no grasp of logic or sarcasm. This isn't quite true in Robert's case, since he is already towering six inches above both Chris and I, and has already reached Advanced Irony, if not quite perhaps sarcasm. He turned 18 on Friday, so the next time he leaves the house, we will be changing the locks. :-)
Maybe we should also lock Emily in - she is now 15, and every time we don't let her get some part of her body pierced, Chris is convinced she hates us. As a relatively late arrival on the scene, without the first 13 years of maternal bonding, I am less concerned, and feel sure we could trade Emily in for a more reliable model on Ebay. Together, my cynicism and Chris's motherly instincts combine, and I like to think we strike a reasonable middle-ground as parents. Mind you, Fred and Rosemary West probably thought so too...
And so we look forward to 2003, with a great deal of optimism, and much relief that there is no ominous, wedding-shaped cloud, looming on the horizon. Though an upcoming trip to Vegas may provide an opportunity for a quickie, possibly involving an Elvis impersonator. Our business is going well, despite the best efforts of Bank of America to drive us into bankruptcy - a long, nasty story involving them holding back $27,000 of our sales for two weeks - and if 2002 was the best year of my life, I see absolutely no reason why 2003 shouldn't be even better.
I hope the same can be said for everyone reading this too. Here's to a merry Christmas, a peaceful New Year, and may 2003 bring you as much happiness as 2002 has brought me.
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