Today I’m Marrying My Best Friend
I’ve never met anyone who can top our love story
Thank you all for coming out today to celebrate our marriage.
Karen and I have known each other since we were in the womb. Our moms took step aerobics together and our dads were in the same bowling league. My mom likes to tell this story about the time she fell off her stepper and tumbled into Karen’s mom. That’s when our zygotes locked eyes. That’s when I met my best friend. For me, it was love at first sight but Karen says she needed some more convincing. She needed to develop a consciousness.
We were born the same day, in the same hospital room, in adjacent beds. Moments after I was delivered I reached for Karen’s hand and she flinched. I don’t hold that against her and it’s now a funny joke between us. She admits she wasn’t ready to accept my love then, but that I have always believed in us. I have never let go of her hand since day 1. Believe me when I tell you, Karen is my best friend.
We grew up across the street from each other so we’d never had to go a day without seeing the other. Karen will admit that she considered me “icky” for most of elementary school, but I persisted. I took every opportunity I could to show her what a great husband I could be.
In the creek that ran through our backyards, I slaughtered bullfrogs and salamanders for her to dissect. I stole candy from the corner store. Once she was taking care of her class’s guinea pig and it escaped. Later we found its remains rotting under her porch steps. I paid for her to buy a new guinea pig to replace the old one and no one was the wiser. That was the first of many secrets that bonded us and made us Best Friends.
In middle school my parent’s split up and Karen was there for me. My mom wanted me to go live with her in another town. This could have been the end of Karen and I. Instead, I let Karen hit me and we framed it on my mom. She lost custody and I was able to stay living with my dad. This is the point in our love story where Karen realized there was no turning back and finally understood what I have always known: It’s us against the world.
The summer going into our junior year of high school, I got my driver’s license and death haunted us at every turn. Still, I have fond memories of this time. It’s the summer we really fell in love, a direct result of experiencing the fragility of life on a near-constant basis.
I’ll never forget the moment I told Karen I loved her. We were lying side-by-side on my trampoline at twilight, clutching each other’s hands as the plane above us burst into flames and torpedoed into a nearby field turned gravesite. “You are my best friend,” I said. “And I don’t want us to die without ever having told you that I love you.” Karen was so moved she was crying. We could taste the jet engine fuel in the air. Our breathing was labored from the debris particles raining down on us. Our eyes burned. I felt it in my heart. That’s what love is.
We attended the same college and studied abroad together in Florence. Like the guinea pig incident from years before, Karen’s roommate went missing. This time, we never found the body. When the cops came around and started asking questions, I vouched for Karen’s surprisingly thin alibi. I didn’t have to ask Karen why she lied to the police or why I had to help her discard several empty bottles of bleach. Best friends trust each other implicitly.
And now today, I stand before you, the proudest man there ever was. I love you, Karen. You have shown me how powerful and terrifying relationships can be. I have no doubt this marriage will lead to the untimely deaths of one or both of us. Still, I am willing to take that risk because what we have is special, unique and true. Literally no one has what we have.
Please raise a glass to Karen, my best friend in the world.