In June, we married at St. Andrews Church on Division Street and had our reception at the Bridgewater Yacht Club on the bay. My favorite memory from that day is holding hands and walking home on Main Street from our wedding. I was never the kind of girl who wanted to be a princess. However, the magic of walking through Sag Harbor and stopping for a kiss on our patch of pavement while dressed in my wedding gown was the closest thing to being in a fairy tale.
. . . Happily ever after? It’s interesting that fairy tales usually end when the prince and princess finally find each other. Thankfully, our story includes the process of building a life together.
We came back from our honeymoon pregnant with our first child. With all of the changes going on in our lives, we thought it would be best to rent out our home. In the fall following our wedding, two years after meeting, we packed our things and left Sag Harbor.
Tom and I had wonderful things happening: the birth of our first child, the purchase of our first house together, a new job, and a second child. Yet, all of these momentous occasions were distracting us from what was also important – each other.
This past winter, the renter moved out of our home. For the first time since our honeymoon, we were returning to Sag Harbor. This time, instead of a couple who had finally found each other, we were a family. Mom, Dad and two boys, ages 4 and 2.
On our first walk through town, not only had many of the storefronts changed, our perspective was different too. Our leisurely pace was replaced by sprints and sudden stops to pet every dog on the street. Instead of peeking in store windows at clothing or house listings, we put fingerprints on the windows pointing at fishing sets and model boats. The Variety Store used to be a place we went for our newspaper and forgotten house goods, now we bought ice cream and rode the fire truck. Instead of waiting for the motorcycles to pass before finishing up a sentence, we stopped talking to admire the bikes and wave at their riders. While the Municipal Building’s facade was often a place Tom and I used to sit and people-watch, now the boys ran up the ramp to claim it as their castle.
Magnolia had become Phao Restaurant, however, our special patch of pavement was still there. This spring, when we returned to our ‘place’ to hold each other again the way we did four years ago, the excitement, hope, fun, adventure and magic of spending time with Tom came rushing back. I am thankful for our ties to Sag Harbor and, I am learning to carry a piece of that pavement with me. I like to think about it whenever I feel I might be forgetting what’s really most important.
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