Melanie and Joe are both nurses.  They live in Madison with their pups.

When Joe and I got engaged, we would talk about how lucky we are, and how we were always going to be luckier than anyone else we knew, because we were so in love and were so sure about our relationship, that all those things that make relationships hard — well they just weren’t going to happen to us. I remember during one of our premarital meetings, we had taken our assessment, and we were discussing the results. Vicky explained that couples fell in to several categories, and I will never forget when she said “… and once in a blue moon, you get a vitalized couple…” And I knew, arrogantly, we had been right about how lucky we are and would always be.

Of course, life still sent stuff our way, and we’ve seen some very difficult times. There have been times that I was certain that we couldn’t navigate out of the terrible place that we were in. Luckily we did manage to, but it’s only after that that I realized the importance of those first meetings with Vicky.  While we weren’t terribly young when we married, we were still naive. The focus on the foundation of our relationship, the why we were together, the how to support one another (and ourselves), and understanding the importance of a partnership are the reasons that we have weathered our storms. We have both grown and changed, as one should, but I believe that we learned how to be able to grow as partners, and to grow together instead of apart or parallel to each other, thanks to her counsel.

On our wedding day, there is no way I could imagine someone else marrying us. Vicky got to know us and understand us, and care about us, and we felt that. We still feel that. She even wrote in how Joe’s grandparents couldn’t come because his grandmother had fallen and broken a hip, and grandpa couldn’t leave her side. She helped guide us into the perfect ceremony for us — the words, the music, the gestures — and it was just that, perfect.

Years later, I feel a different kind of lucky. I am lucky that Joe and I can both appreciate each other for who we are and what we bring, and respect each other for that. I am lucky that our path led us to Vicky to help us lay the foundation of our marriage. I may be arrogant, but I still think we are the luckiest couple that we know.

Melanie (with Joe)

Married since 2008