Welcome to the Tales of a Honeymoon Link Up! If you’d like to join in, simply write a honeymoon-themed post over on your blog, then add a link to the Mister Linky list below. (Make sure the link you submit is to the URL of your post and please include a link back here. Thank you!) I can’t wait to read your stories of travel and romance!
For those of you who didn’t guess, Mr. Beguiles and I went to New Orleans for our honeymoon. It was the location of our first date so it seemed the most romantic choice. Fall (my favorite season) came early that year so the leaves were falling and there was a delightful chill in the air. It was perfect.
We stayed in the heart of the French Quarter at the Dauphine Orleans hotel which was absolutely heavenly. Our room was full of antique furniture, sumptuous linens, and fresh flowers; it had a super sweet bathtub–which I personally consider a must; Champagne and strawberries were delivered (on the house!) whenever we requested; and we could hear quiet sounds of jazz out our window.
Our days were laid-back. We slept a lot, smooched a lot, and savored breathtakingly good music, art, and food. We visited the Audubon Aquarium of the Americas, the Saint Louis Cathedral, Cafe Du Monde, and other New Orleans must-sees. Dan even humored me and followed me around while I shopped a bit.
It was everything I’d dreamed a honeymoon could be.
Well, up until the last night, that is. The last night was supposed to be the high point–the grand finale. My uncle had called the day before to tell us that he’d made a reservation for us at Emeril’s. All we had to do was show up and feast! Isn’t that sweet? We were so excited.
Emeril’s was amazing–impeccable service, a fantastic setting, a fun and funky atmosphere, and out-of-this-world fare.
At least that’s what my husband tells me.
I started to feel sick about halfway through the appetizers so I don’t honestly remember much. By the time my husband’s dinner arrived I knew things were getting bad fast. How did I know? Let me just say this: a dead quail floating on it’s back–complete with legs sticking straight up at a ninety degree angle–in a steaming pile of grits is pretty much the worst thing I can imagine gazing upon while suffering from food poisoning.
Yes, over the next 24 hours it would become clear that I’d been poisoned. Poisoned on my honeymoon! And by the most delicious New Orleans Muffuletta (or that’s my theory, anyway). I’m still shocked that it betrayed me so.
But back to Emeril’s…I tried, girls. I really, really tried. I tried to praise this unique (and surely delicious) entree my husband had selected; I tried to be supportive; I tried not to ruin his meal, but in the end we had to cut our dinner short (which I still feel terrible about). I just couldn’t handle the dead quail legs. I spent the rest of the evening (and night and following morning) with my face firmly pressed against the cold tile right next to that gorgeous hotel bathtub. It was not fun.
So, that sounds like a horrible ending to an otherwise lovely honeymoon, yes? And it was, but it was also kind of special (stay with me here). You see, the entire time Dan and I had been dating I was very shy about being sick around him (especially when it came to illnesses of the stomach variety). Part of it was some ridiculous aversion to being weak and part of it was a shyness that I’ve possessed since youth.
It’s a difficult thing to explain but through that miserable, awful, terrible sickness, God allowed me to experience something extraordinary. I was shocked to find that I no longer felt any fear of being weak in front of my new husband. I was also not remotely embarrassed by his seeing me in a (far, far) less-than-lovely state. It’s hard to articulate what a profound change this was for me, but believe me when I say that I still marvel at it.
In a (sacramental) instant I’d discovered a level of comfort with my husband that I had heretofore never experienced with anyone. The sickness was miserable (really, really, really miserable) but to experience that transformation was beautiful. Rarely have I experienced something usually taken on faith is such a tangible way. I consider it such a gift that in that moment God lifted the veil just a bit and said, “Here! Do you see now? I have changed you! You are no longer two but one!”
Even to this day, when faced with hard times, I remember that experience–in all it’s ugliness and misery–and am strengthened by it. I can remember who we were, who we became, and who we are now. In the words of my husband, “It’s industrial glue that was used to fuse me and you. Two became one.”