Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Family Inspiration

Sometimes I find myself doubting the success of marriage in today's society. This past year I have seen couples that I thought would NEVER have problems experience all kinds of issues, with several of them ending in divorce. With next year being my twentieth wedding anniversary I admit that there are times when I feel that things in my own marriage, while happy, can sometimes be a bit "stale". I think it is very possible to get too comfortable in a marriage and to take your mate and their feelings for granted. Maintaining a long and happy marriage isn't easy! Sometimes it helps to have a bit of inspiration from a couple who has weathered the storms of life.

That makes me all the more grateful that I have one of those inspirational couples in my own life. Today is my parents' 50th Wedding anniversary.

Over the years they have been through a lot: loss of jobs, moving across the state away from family, moving back across the state to be with family, car accidents, hospitalization, other accidents, and the deaths of their own parents.

I can remember myself as a youngster, helping them both clean the church that we attended, going each week to sweep, vaccuum, and clean as needed. I can also remember returning to that same church each Sunday morning at their side, to attend Sunday School and church services as a family.

I can remember those hot summer evenings at home, no air conditioning because we couldn't afford it. My father would load us all into the family station wagon, with us children sometimes already dressed in our pajamas. We would get to select our favorite flavors of ice cream and lounge in the back of station wagon, enjoying each cool, sweet drip until it was all gone.

I can remember being at my mother's side as she waited patiently in a hospital emergency room while my father underwent eye surgery after he suffered a fall from a church roof. I can also remember the feeling of despair that I felt when the doctor came out and announced that my father would be blind in one eye. For a man who did construction and electrical wiring for a living I thought this would be a deathblow to his soul. It wasn't. Today, many years later he still does construction from time to time, though it is on a much smaller scale.

Through it all, the one constant has been that the two of them made decisions together and supported each other. Don't get me wrong- they haven't always agreed on everything, but they have manged to achieve that lovely state of compromise when it was needed most.

Today when one of us experiences a problem we can call on them and BOTH of them will come- whether it is a plumbing issue, a needed baby-sitter, or support during a time of crisis. As I sat at their side this weekend, listening to the friendly banter back and forth, it was very clear that the love is still there, 50 years later. My parents stand as a testament to the fact that marriages can last and that "Till death do us part" is still possible. I can only hope that Glenn and I can follow in their example and maintain that same loving, caring attitude and support in our own marriage.

1 comment:

  1. this year i will be married 23(!) years. we went to see 'Hope Springs' last week - and it was funny/sad/enlightening.

    for anyone who has been in a marriage for a long time i would recommend seeing this film - plus Meryl Streep and Tommy Lee Jones are pretty awesome - you will likely see parts of yourself.