It’s been a few months, but something I heard on a podcast back then has still stuck with me. It’s something that haunts me. It creeps into my mind from time to time. It also motivates me. It also has me feeling greater than I ever have in my life.
“Once you reach the moon, what comes next?”
I don’t remember who said it on what podcast, but I remember the why. The premise is simple: What do you do next once you have reached your pinnacle, your top-crowning achievement? Do you rest on your laurels? Do you submit to the notion that life is all downhill? Does the reward outweigh the process?
I have been married for one week and a day. When two people are joined in Holy Matrimony, they are most likely at the peak of their relationship. Everyone in their life has nothing but praises to sing. Gifts pour in. Being in love is almost too easy, I mean, it’s your wedding for goodness sake, how could you not be? When you get married, you literally get your cake and eat it too.
The hard part, of course, will all good things, is to keep that feeling. To stay in love and not just have a love for one another. There is no wedding at the end of your relationship. In most cases, it’s merely the beginning for those who stay married. I plan on being married until the day I die. I’m 38 years old. If I play my cards right, I figure I have another 40–50 years.
You don’t get married at the end of your decades-long relationship or life, you reach the moon first. It’s figuring out how to stay on the moon or exceed it, if you can, afterward.
I get it. I’m a newlywed. I’m in love. I have been in love since the day I met my wife. It was love at first sight. I know, I would have been cringing right next to you, too, if I had read this even a year ago. Unless you have felt what I am feeling right now, it is indescribable. I truly am honored and blessed to have met this woman and for her to have supported me, loved me, respected me, and even just laughed with me, instead of at me.
I have reached the moon with her. Some people have made comments about letting myself go or easing up on the courtship or letting my true self be known. I’m very confused by those because, if anything, I am going to better myself even more so, to keep her. I want my wife to stay proud and supportive, not languish in attraction or feel like she’s not being paid attention to.
And I have been honest throughout our relationship. I went through some very hard moments this past summer and she not only stuck by me, but got me to finally be honest with myself, and that’s the hardest thing I have ever done. I’m not a liar. I’m not a user. I’m not some guy angling for other women. I don’t even like when strangers treat women poorly, let alone how could I do so to the one woman I have pledged my life to.
I may have reached more than the moon, now that I think about it. And I want more, with her by my side. I want the sun, the moon, the stars, I want it all. I want to grind harder at work. I want to set more time aside to write. I want to love her and our new family. Heck, I want to add to our family. The fun doesn’t stop here, just as the work doesn’t stop here.
A week before the wedding, my brother, brothers-in-law, best friend, and uncle treated me to an amazing, surprising, and sober, bachelor party. It’s been five months today that I have been completely clean in my life. No drinking. No drugs. Not even a cigarette. That is a promise I made to myself and to all of those still around my life.
I had the time of my life with them, and then a week later I had the time of my life with my wife. Another week and I’m still having the time of my life. I’m not only going to the moon and back, I plan on staying there. Will it be hard to breathe at times? Yes. Will I want to return to Earth during some moments? Of course.
I am writing this to my future self to remind myself of what I am feeling right now. What I felt just a week ago. I have wanted this my entire life. To be married. To have kids. To be and have what I never thought I had growing up. There’s a lot to dissect there, too, but for another time. Right here, right now, this is exactly where I want to be.
I made it. I’m not just on top of the moon, I’m beyond it.