Monday was not only the day my mom had surgery, it was the day my wife and I celebrated our 30th anniversary. In the early evening she and I did the dress-up and went out to dinner. I put on a coat and tie for the first time in years. She was beautiful!
Marriage gets a bad rap in this country. People change mates like they change tires. Wear one out, get another. Don’t like the ride? Get another. Performance not acceptable? Get another.
We’ve had tough times, arguments, schisms. But in thirty years we’ve weathered every storm and that little string that tied us together over thirty years ago has held solid. I’ve been stupid and selfish and confusing and probably worse. She’s stuck by me. She’s infuriated me, frustrated me, made me crazy, but I have never, ever stopped adoring her. From the very first moment I saw her, I have loved her. I shall love her until I die.
A marriage will not work unless there’s an understanding that there must be giving, selflessness, and forgiveness when the partner is not giving or selfless. We are both guilty at times of doing for self. But we have learned to forgive and stick together rather than get all snuffy and run off.
Eight years ago we hit our worse time. I wasn’t sure we’d make it through that one. This obsession I have with ethics and “doing the right thing without compromise” isn’t shared with my wife. I took a stand at work and got screwed. A bunch of dreams came crashing down. I decided that maybe I was the wrong person for my wife. Maybe she should find someone else. I took off driving a truck long-haul. She never looked at another guy though I gave her a pretty good shove. I regret the whole episode now. But maybe it puts our relationship in perspective.
Though we were not in contact for a while I ached inside for not being at home. After a few months on the road I was really not happy. One day while running the Pennsylvania pike I stopped in and got myself an cappuccino. I sat it on the cup holder, started rolling in my truck, the truck lurched and I dumped the whole cup. For five minutes I threw a terrible three-year-old throw-down fit. I wanted to BE HOME! By then my wife and I had been talking again and I’d seen her when I came into Texas every few weeks.
When I became a home-daddy five years ago everything in my world changed. The thing that changed more than I ever expected was that my wife took her place beside me and has supported me as head of our household even as she’s been the bread-winner by default. We’ve grown closer. We’re learning how to deal with our kids together. We’re building our family one day at a time. Though troubled times are coming we are everything a couple should be and our family is growing into a wonderful thing.
I wasn’t able to get her anything for our anniversary. A hundred bucks doesn’t go very far these days in a jewelry store. She didn’t have time to get anything either. We just got cards. Of course, she one-up’d me and got THREE cards!
On Sunday she asked what I wanted. I told her I just wanted her to love me and have another sixty years together. The love part I know will be there. We’ll cross our fingers about the sixty years. But sixty years or six months, my life has been worth living because that crazy woman has been my best friend, my wife, my main squeeze. She’s my rainbow and my heart-beat. The country song goes, “I can’t promise to love you for the rest of your life but I will promise to love you for the rest of mine.” Well, I’ll love my beloved wife forever, in this world and in the world to come, she will forever be my reason.
I love you, RB!
2 Comments »