When I was pregnant with our third child, my mother-in-law told us that she thought we should take a second honeymoon and she would watch our two daughters for a week since it would be a long time before we got away by ourselves again. We quickly accepted her offer, and began to think about what we would do. We lived in New Jersey and decided that Bermuda sounded like a great place to go, so we made our reservations and started planning our trip. As we were dreaming about this wonderful opportunity, I noticed in our parish church bulletin, that there was going to be a Marriage Encounter Weekend just before we were leaving for Bermuda. I pointed this out to my beloved husband, because when I had had pneumonia the winter before, he had promised me that we would go on a Marriage Encounter Weekend "if I got well." Both of us had been resigned to the fact that it probably wouldn't be until our children were all grown that we could go. However, I told him that I was sure his mother would be willing to take the girls for an extra weekend, and she was. I was excited about it, and he was agreeable, though he thought that it wouldn't be worthwhile and had some concerns that they would make him quack like a duck or some other activity that would make him feel foolish. He told me to call the people in charge and find out if we should make our reservations for the flight to Bermuda for Sunday night or Monday morning. They told us to plan for Monday morning. My mother-in-law picked up the girls on Friday, and we headed to the Howard Johnson's for the weekend.
We already had a great relationship, but through the course of the weekend, we fell more profoundly in love, learning to listen with our hearts, share our deepest feelings, and encounter one another on a level we could never even have imagined. By Sunday afternoon, we were flying high without benefit of an airplane! We came home, finished our packing, and headed to the airport Monday morning. As we came up the airstairs to the plane, the flight attendant looked at our faces and asked us if we were on our honeymoon! I came up a few more steps and he could see that I was quite pregnant as I assured him that it was a second honeymoon.
That week in Bermuda was unforgettable. We stayed at a hotel that had 5 pools and we swam in every one of them. The water in the ocean was a clear turquoise blue and as warm as an embrace, and we floated in it together nearly every day. We went into the capital city on the one rainy day, drove mopeds from one end of the island to another (all 26 miles), took a bus tour, and discovered plants and flowers that I had never seen before--but many of which I have rediscovered since moving to California--and enjoyed continuing to learn more about each other and loving each other more every day. It was the incredible beginning to a marriage that became more exceptional--even spectacular--all the time.