Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Still Honeymooning

A month or so ago, Social Graces highlighted my honeymoon to St. Lucia as part of their honeymoon series! Once again, it was an honor to be a part of what they're doing (exciting stuff!), and it was such fun to reflect on what was such a memorable time in my life...and to be given an opportunity to share it!

I find myself thinking back to our time in the Caribbean again this week. Our dear friends and favorite newlyweds, Mr. and Mrs. Piatt, are in St. Lucia right now enjoying their honeymoon. Admittedly I'm a bit jealous, but mostly just thrilled for them; I know what a grand time they must be having! We can't wait to hear all about it!

I realized when writing my Social Graces submission that my honeymoon took place before I was back in the blogging-on-a-regular-basis-swing-of-things, and I never shared much about it. For posterity's sake, I think it would be valuable to record more details about the experience. In a funny way, I'm thankful to have waited so long to share, as I suspect my appreciation and reflections of the trip are different now than they would have been nearly two years ago....

Never before have I longed to jump into a photo and insert myself into a scene as much as I do with the image below….

The above photo is of my husband, Bobby, and me on our honeymoon in St. Lucia during late-August 2009. The image captures everything I loved about our trip…the sand, the sun, the setting, and having my new husband by my side. We stayed at the Sandals La Toc all-inclusive resort, and enjoyed ourselves immensely. The honeymoon was everything we hoped it would be…relaxing, romantic, and memorable.

And goodness, was it ever memorable?! On our first full day at the resort, Bobby tossed me playfully into the water…and accidentally tossed his wedding band, too! Talk about a devastating moment. I suspect I will forever remember the look on Bobby’s face when he realized the ring had flown off…and the frantic (though futile) search through the waves, helplessly hoping against the odds that we’d find the ring. Unfortunately, we did not.

The Sandals catchphrase (at the St. Lucian properties, anyway) is “no pressure…no problem”, and we very much appreciated the island’s laid-back, carefree perspective throughout our stay. No more so than in the hours after our “loss”. Sad as we were, that time was precious. It was the first real test of how we, as husband and wife, handled a trying situation. And, I must say, we handled it quite well. We recognized that it was only a piece of jewelry…just a symbol of the commitment we had made…and our day and our trip were far from ruined because of a lost ring.

We actually had so much fun during our time in St. Lucia that we literally lost all track of time, and tried to leave one day early. We weren’t in a hurry to leave…far from it! We just miscalculated. (How, I’ll never know.) We got so far as to pack our things, checkout of the resort, and board the shuttle. Thank goodness we looked at the tickets once more before we started the hour-long commute to the airport…good grief.

Sure, we had one more day to enjoy the tropics…but that was also the day that my prescription sunglasses joined the ring at the bottom of the sea. The trip turned out to be more costly than planned, but as they say, “no pressure…no problem!”

I have nothing but wonderful things to say about the St. Lucian people and the Sandals experience. (It was just as breathtaking and incredible as the commercials make the resorts appear!) But, besides the fine dining and luxurious accommodations…besides lounging on the beach and soaking up the sun…besides candlelit dinners and moonlit walks by the water…besides all of those wonderful things, we experienced something else for the first time in St. Lucia. We experienced the blessing of what it means to be husband and wife, sticking together, for better or worse. How lucky for us that we got to discover that in such a beautiful place!

Losing the ring wasn’t the last time we’ve faced trying times in our nearly two years of marriage. (Actually, we’ve replaced the wedding band more than once, but that’s neither here nor there.) And, those experiences are always difficult. But, when I look at that photo on the beach, I am immediately taken back to that happy, blissful day at the beginning of our marriage. I can almost feel the hot Caribbean sun and the sand beneath my feet. Beyond that, though, it is a constant reminder of the excitement and anticipation I felt as a newlywed. And while we’re far from the Caribbean these days, I’m still exactly where I love to be, next to my husband, and full of joy that I’m his bride.

St. Lucia holds a special place in our hearts, and we would visit again in a heartbeat. Though this time, I’m sure, we’d leave the jewelry and eyewear at home….

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