Wedding Vows

After an exchange of rings in 1985 and a religious ceremony in 2003, we were finally able to legally marry on July 31, 2013. On the occasion of our second anniversary, here are the vows we wrote 12 years ago, before Alzheimer’s disease entered our lives. They are reflected in our Ketubah, or Jewish marriage contract: “We desire our lives to be intertwined forever and for our love to be eternal.  We set ourselves apart for each other and will take no other lover. We hereby assume all the rights and obligations that apply to family members: to attend, care and provide for one another and for our children.  We promise to be full and equal partners in life and to do everything within our power to permit each of us to become the person she is yet to be. We pledge, when skies are gray, when times are difficult, and when the inevitable tensions arise, to give each other the benefit of the doubt and always to assume the best of each other. We promise to laugh together at the vagaries of life. We commit ourselves to a life of kindness and righteousness as a Jewish family and to work together toward the communal task of mending the world. We pledge that one will help the other at the time of dying by carrying out the last rational request of the dying partner, protecting her from indignity or abandonment and by tender, faithful presence with the beloved until the end, fulfilling what has been written, “Set me as a seal upon your arm, for love is stronger than death.” (Song of Songs, 8:6)

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