There are lessons that come with 43 years of marriage, just ask Aubrey and Deb.
“I wouldn’t advise anyone to do what we did,” Deb says. “I wouldn’t advise anyone to get married as a joke.”
When she looks back at her youth, Deb describes herself as someone who was insecure and had low self-esteem. One weekend, Aubrey, who had been engaged before, showed Deb some rings he had at the time.
“I said, ‘Let’s as a joke put them on and see what my mom says,’” Deb recalls with a laugh. “And I just took that ball and ran with it.”
While Deb was rebelling against her mother, Aubrey was pacifying his. “We got married on my mother’s front yard,” he says.
However, it wasn’t happily ever after for Deb and Aubrey. The years were hard. And soon after, they separated and went to a lawyer for a divorce. Yet the lawyer saw something in the young couple they could not.
“He told us we still loved each other,” Deb recalls. “He told us to go back and start dating. If we still wanted a divorce in a year, he’d do it for free, but he didn’t think we would be back.”
The road ahead wasn’t easy. Aubrey knew that in order for his marriage to work, he would have to stop drinking. And he did. Deb also knew she had an important choice to make.
“When we did get to back together, this is what I got out of it: loving this man was an act of my will. It wasn’t a feeling. I had to make a choice. I chose to love him and be the wife he needed me to be. I chose to love him no matter what.”
Now, more than four decades later, Aubrey and Deb are proud grandparents and say they are more in love than the day they were married.
“We have gone through many things,” Aubrey says. “We’ve gone through sickness, many sicknesses, and many problems. We’ve weathered the storm with God’s help and with prayer.”
Grateful for what God has done in their lives, the couple describes their story as one that shows all you can overcome. Deb calls it, “The joke that roared.”
“And,” says Aubrey, “It shows God has a sense of humour.”
“I had to make a choice. I chose to love him and be the wife he needed me to be. I chose to love him no matter what.”
“He told us to go back and start dating. If we still wanted a divorce in a year, he’d do it for free, but he didn’t think we would be back.”