When Ronnie’s parents celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary, she pulled her mother aside at the party held at the church where Ronnie and her eight siblings had been baptized.
“Wow, Ma, 50 years!” Ronnie said, “How in the world did you guys make it to 50 years?”
Ronnie’s mother was an everyday sage who swiftly got to the heart of things. “Well, you know,” she said, pausing for emphasis, “we never divorced.”
Ronnie cracked up. Her mother was at the beginning of the Alzheimer’s hell that would take her life a few years later. Still, her response seemed awfully simple.
“That’s it, Ma?” she asked. “You never divorced? Is that all you have for me?”
Before her mother could expound, a well-wisher whisked her away for another slice of cake. But Ronnie realized that her mother’s words didn’t need further explanation.
What she’d meant was, “We never gave up on each other. And not giving up forced us to find a new way to love each other when we’d outgrown the old one. It meant letting time do its work so we could get to the good stuff again. And one day we looked up, and 50 years had passed, and we were still together, and we loved each other more than ever.”
Ronnie knew that’s what her mother meant – because she’d spent her whole life watching her parents never divorce. And she became a firm believer in the power of marriage to shape and mold not just the people within it but the arc of the love story they start writing the moment they decide to marry.
Ronnie is obsessed with stories. In her more than thirty years as a local and national news reporter and columnist, she has told stories of people in the very worst and the very best of circumstances. Consistently, the tales that have touched her most deeply have been about those who consciously chose love over distrust, curiosity over suspicion, joy over fear, and connection over division.
In other words, they choose hope and faith.
When a couple decides to marry, Ronnie believes, they do the same. As an officiant, she works with them to create a warm, joyful, inclusive ceremony whose words and rituals reflect the couple’s hope and faith in each other – and leave guests feeling that hope and faith are alive within themselves, too. While Ronnie was raised in the Christian faith, her own spirituality is broad and welcoming; she enthusiastically helps couples sift through old and new traditions to craft a service that it feels unique to their relationship and beliefs.
Ronnie’s own love story began in 1986, when she married her writer husband Noel, who remains her best friend. They live in a Fairmount row house, where they raised their now-grown daughter, and share a love of good movies, urban exploration, comedy clubs, and hosting potluck dinners where extra guests will always find a seat at the table.
Ronnie is currently undergoing training to become a certified positive-psychology practitioner.