I grew up listening to Captain & Tennille spin their songs of love, some of them foot stomping fun  — You Better Shop Around (yeah baby) or Love Will Keep Us Together — and others touching the deepest part of my sappy young soul — Muskrat Love, anyone?  One song in particular stuck with me, though:  The Wedding Song.  Take a moment to google the lyrics, and keep them open for reference.  For its the memory of these lyrics that sent me into a tidal wave of emotion at a wedding I attended recently, the wedding of a couple that deserves membership in the vomit-inducing club, for sure.   I want to tell you the bride’s story, a story of hope for many of us, and a story of second — and third — chances.

Once upon a time, a beautiful, exotic woman gave up on love. Love — and the absence of love — kicked the crap out of her for a decade. She spent the next ten years with her chin lifted high and showed the world she didn’t need love, or any One. She mothered her two children and became a great success, at everything but love. When men would woo, she had only to look into the mirror at the scars no one could see, look deep into those big brown eyes, to find her No. Was she a bad picker or a bad partner? Who knew, who cared; all that mattered was not going through the pain again for something she, a strong woman, didn’t need, for something that she really didn’t believe existed anymore.

She met a man last year. A man who wanted to marry her. And she had to look in that mirror again and ask her twice-divorced self:

So then what’s to be the reason for becoming man and wife?

For her, not security. Not money. Not the promise of children. Not family pressure or religious convictions. For God’s sake, they could just live together after all, keep it simple, make the split less painful (or at least less costly) when it came. It had always come before.

But she said yes. Because It had happened. And It is the reason: a blinding flash of hope so exquisitely true she couldn’t tell if it was pleasure or pain.

Loving is the answer. Real love. The kind of love only romantics (strong people) believe in.

She believes in something she has never — not in all her 44 years — seen before.

Oh, there IS love.

Yes, there is love….

And, so, on a lovely day in March, this dear, dear, beautiful, wounded woman lifted high her chin once again but this time also her heart and announced to the world that she took this man, not just as someone but as The One. She and her new husband stood with their lightning in a bottle suspended between them on gossamer threads, for all to see.  Hope replaced with trust.

I wish them more laughter than tears, more joy than sorrow, and more kisses than curses, because life gives us both. May they always remember the fragility of that bottle suspended between them, and that if they lift a hand to point at the other, it will fall; instead may they work as hard as it takes to put It before Me and enjoy the dream of crossword puzzles and growing old together.

The Wedding Song (lyrics):

He is now to be among you at the calling of your hearts

Rest assured this troubadour is acting on his part

The union of your spirits here has caused him to remain

For whenever two or more of you are gathered in his name

There is love, there is love


Well a man shall leave his mother, and a woman leave her home

They shall travel on to where the two shall be as one

As it was in the beginning and is now until the end

A woman draws her life from man and gives it back again

And there’s love, there is love


And then what’s to be the reason for becoming man and wife

Is it love that brings you here or love that gives you life

For if loving is the answer then who’s the giving for

Do you believe in something that you’ve never seen before

Oh there’s love, there is love


And then what’s to be the reason for becoming man and wife

Is it love that brings you here or love that gives you life

For if loving is the answer then who’s the giving for

Do you believe in something that you’ve never seen before

Oh there’s love, there is love


With much love,


p.s. She picked a health nut engineer; sounds like a recipe for success to me! And from the fifteen minutes I spent talking to him, I can tell you two truths: 1) Her trust is well-placed, because he adores her and 2) I could not have picked better for her had it been my sacred duty to do so. You did good, bebe.

p.p.s.  Want to hear the Captain and Tennille perform The Wedding Song?

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29 Responses to Was she a bad picker or a bad partner?

  1. Sandy says:

    Damnit Girl!! You made me cry. TJ & I were together for 16 years before I married him, but when he asked me to marry him before he died I couldn’t say no any longer. He was going through chemo when we were married. We played that song at our wedding in place of the traditional “Here Comes The Bride”. That song resonated with us because he didn’t have much longer to live and the line, “Is it love that brings you here or love that gives you life” really meant something to us. That frog post had better be funny to make up for making me cry at work!! Beautiful post and I am glad your friend was able to find love again.

  2. Grace says:

    Wow. Just wow, wow, wow.

    I think I could be your friend’s identical twin. I’m 44, and love yanked the stuffing out of me for a good, long while. Please congratulate her for me and tell her she’s my hero.

  3. Jeannie Zehender says:

    This love, it takes my breath away, when I think of that once in a lifetime kind of love, very few are truely blessed with this kind of love, with this kind of man or woman. Those that know you and love you, saw it long before you knew they knew. Their prayers were answered when they saw your smiles,felt your hugs, and felt their love returned, by you. All of this because of that love you gave to each other, freely. A love that let you sore to be the best of each other. Your loved ones, old,young, blood or friends were blessed being with you both, as you loved each other. As you loved as if you had never loved before.

  4. JennyBean says:

    Okay, thanks to you, Pamela, I’ve just spent the last 20 minutes Googling “Captain and Tennille Where Are They Now.”

    In case you wondered, they’re happy and well and living in Prescott, Ariz., and I have a song worm–“Love, love will keep us together. Think of me babe…”

    Best wishes to your friend for a very happy life with her engineer.

  5. Horay for finding the love in yourself to let someone love you!! And you musta done your homework to bring such an awesome dude into your life:) Congratulations!! And that is an awesome toast. I might have to borrow it:) Divorce sucks but it sure can make you appreciate marriage!

  6. Ally says:

    Can I just say “Awwwwww”! I grew up on Captain & Tenille (my mom had the albums, I had not choice but to listen!). I wish your friend & her love all the best!

  7. Irene says:

    Ah, Paul Stookey From Peter Paul and Mary! I have that song on my iPod! Beautiful accoustic guitar!

  8. LBDDiaries says:

    Beautiful story and beautifully written. May she experience many love-filled years for bravely taking a very hard step.

  9. Pamela says:

    —–Original Message—–
    From:Pamelot’s dad
    To: Pamelot
    Sent: Wed, Mar 16, 2011 11:02 am
    Subject: Re: Road to Joy: Oh, there’s love.

    I never knew you were a hopeless romantic. I think it’s genetic.

  10. Christina says:

    How do you manage to inspire even a major cynic like me? Oh Pamela!

  11. Eric Hutchins says:

    Jeannie that was very sweet, even though Pamela’s post was not about us there were parts of it that reminded me of our story also. AND we will never forget the warmth and genuine friendship that you and Mike immediately gave to us in a very difficult time. It was a time that showed us who our friends really were.

  12. Pamela,
    That was so sweet and touching! I am so happy for Susan! She so deserves to be in love and have a great guy! Heard you have remarried and doing great too, you also look like you havent aged at all! Great to see you again!

  13. […] Big love = epic adventures, big screen romances, and greeting card sonnets.  It’s Disney princess.  It’s the Notebook.  It’s lightning in a bottle. […]

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