This past week, Darrin and I celebrated 25 years of marriage. Twenty five years?!! Seems incredible. Seems impossible. I've become one of those "old people" who frequently query "Where have the years gone?" The older I get the more evident it becomes to me that no one's life has quite turned out how they have anticipated. Well, at least in my limited circle of influence.
I was engaged just a few short weeks after high school graduation. My ideal of life was to find your soul mate, have a bunch of kids, live a good life and God will bless you. The ride of my life commenced in 1986 when I did meet my soulmate. I remember the moment I saw him. It is seered in my memory. He was what I imagined in my little school girlish dreams growing up on Vancouver Island. I wanted to marry a California boy. Didn't know how it would happen, but just knew that's what I wanted. I even had the color car picked out that he was going to drive (candy apple red.) So, when I walked into that 4th of July dance in San Jose all those years ago and scammed the place; my focus fell on this blond haired, blue-eyed boy with a ready smile. There is some disagreement to what he was wearing but I say it was 501 Levis, with a cotton plaid shirt and boat shoes (no socks.) I remember he made fun of my Canadian accent (geesh, like Canadians have accents.) And I remember my cheeks hurt from laughing so hard. He was confident and seemed to glow with enthuasism for life. Some people remember the exact songs they danced to. This was unimportant to me; we just had a good time. I drove home with anticipation I would see him again. Darrin had neglected to ask for my number. :(
Two days later, I am walking to church. I sit down on a bench a few rows from the front. A few minutes later, as fate would have it, Darrin sits directly in front of me. Apparently, he was teaching a class next so I watched as he jotted down a few thoughts on the back of the program in preparation for his Sunday school class. He invited me to join his class and I eagerly accepted. As I watched him teach, I noticed a torn pocket on his suit. The thought that came to me was "that boy needs a good woman to sew/repair his clothes." Not that I knew how to sew well but I could of fixed him up just fine.
I was invited to go for a drive to the Oakland Temple after church with he and some friends. Ironically, my older brother had "warned" me about first dates to the temple but that wasn't for me as I was through with getting serious for awhile. I just wanted to have fun and play this Summer. However, after that date up to the Oakland Temple where we were later married, Darrin and I were inseparatable. As much as you can be with both of us working. I at Gemco (now Target) and Darrin as a roofing contractor. That summer was the best of my life. There has not been another to compare. We both left each other laughing and at the same time there was a desire to have the same shared goals of life.
Darrin's philosophy was simple. He would tell me he always wanted a woman to love him unconditionally and to be a father. Didn't seem too lofty of a goal. But as other couples will attest, loving someone unconditionally can be challenging at times. During that summer Darrin earned the nickname "Roof God." Which I whole heartedly agreed. He was this tanned, muscle bound, hard working machine and it did seem like everything he touched turned to gold.
It was hard to leave him to attend school in the fall but necessary. Darrin would leave work Friday afternoon and drive all the way to Rexburg Idaho to visit me for the weekend. He would drive ALL night to get back to roofing on Monday. Every weekend it seemed we would have to renew our relationship and solidify what our future goals would be. There were moments when he was unsure and at times I was unsure of our relationship. But always "something" would confirm that we were well suited.
Why am I giving all this background about the courting of Darrin and I? I think it's important that couples "remember." I think we need to remember the feelings we initially had going into the commitment of marriage. I think it's important to remember that feelings will ebb and flow like waves cascading onto the shore. But inevitably those feelings will return, if the focus is still the shoreline. They will be powerful at times depending on the variables around or subtle but ultimately always there. Marriage is WORK. Anything worthwhile is work. I think as humans we become lazy and contented. I think couples forget that they anticipated all day seeing their love in the evening. Planning for it. Making sure ones teeth were brushed or that they had a little something special planned that night to acknowledge those feelings of love. How lazy we become over the years to not continue in that anticipation and not renew our love every day. How tragic it can be when we let other relationships or activities come before our soulmates. At times, I have lost sight of the importantness of that initial/imperative relationship called my spouse. He is my partner through this life and has been a faithful loyal companion. Although, life seems to have kicked both our behinds, we continue to cherish that bond that we created over 25 years ago. Happy Anniversary To My Love!!
Thursday, September 22, 2011
So my daughter Logen encouraged me to start a blog. I am tired of facebook and it's ever increasing invasion on my privacy. I am a private person and this change makes sense to me. Thoughts for this week seem to trend around the topic of superficiality. I think because I work at a hospital around "sick" people that it becomes more and more evident of the ridiculousness of some to gear their "happiness" around their appearance. I watch as newly diagnosed cancer patients, end of life patients and those who lose limbs revert back to what is most important to them in such circumstances. Rarely will you see a patient wishing they had more time to exercise, get a facial or pedicure before they pass. Their thoughts are consumed with spending every minute with their closest family members or friends. All else becomes moot. It has caused me to ponder the priorities in my life and where I spend my time (apparently on the computer.) I think sometimes because my actions are not congruent with my priorities, I tend to get melancholy. Life is definitely a journey and although I am 43 years young, I have much to learn. The older I get the more I am convinced that most of what I worry about is frivolous. The challenge is to master such worries and focus my intentions on what is most worthy; my family.