Monday, January 10, 2011

Anniversary

I have been married 36 years today if I don't count the divorce, the 3 year hiatus and 1 year of living together before we re-married.  Now, that is quite a story.


Lake Okeechobee Sunset  by Cole Scott
The lake is surrounded by a man made dike, Hoover Dike,  begun in 1929 completed 1971. 
It protects the surrounding communities from floods during hurricane season.   The
dike takes up the lower part of the shoot which explains the perfectly straight horizon.  


My husband is in Florida right now, exploring the Everglades and the Panhandle.  He left New Year's Day  on a road trip with our oldest son.  They drove to Naples where our second son lives.  They spent a week in the warm sun, helping #2 move into a new apt not fifty feet from the beach.  He had quality time with both boys who, when it came time to say goodbye, were very emotional.  #1 flew back to Salt Lake City for his last semester at the U and my husband left Naples the following day. 

Thirty six years of marriage is certainly no small feat.  It has taken every bit of will power we have to make it work.  Ours is not the idyllic chirping of soul mates.  It is the rocky road of ups, downs, angry moments, leave takings and time spent apart held together ultimately by two children we cherish more than life.  We made the decision long ago to make it work and we have. 

Romantic?  Sometimes very.  Our happiest moments together are on vacation, just the two of us, on the road, exploring.  Our greatest accomplishments are those two boys with whom we are "well pleased." 

Why am I not with my husband right now?  He needed to get away and I needed him to be away.  He needed to bond with his sons, spend memorable time together before the inevitable changes in all our lives become permanent. 

At leave taking, our younger son told his father "I don't think I'll be moving home again, Dad." 

That's a powerful statement and, no matter you know it's coming, it shakes you.  It is one of those moments.

As my husband wends his way towards Apalachicola, I  have to admit, it's a pretty good marriage.  When you get to the point where you can give your partner the freedom to explore, enjoy and discover things with or without you,  no strings attached, that's love with an open hand.   

Happy Anniversary honey!


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17 comments:

Alan Burnett said...

Happy anniversary to you both. After so many years marriage has to be a success, however it is balanced.

Pat Tillett said...

Happy Anniversary to you!
I'd say 36 years is quite an accomplishment, no matter how you got there!
It seems like if a couple can work its way through the rough spots and find a comfort zone with each other, it can last a long time!

Brenda Susan said...

Happy Anniversary and yes, I can see how your story could make an anniversary a bit complicated to explain!

It is interesting to walk this new season as parents to grown-ups isn't it?

Baino said...

It is love with an open hand, happy anniversary Cali. Not many re-marry the man they divorced, testament to your willingness to make it work. I wish I'd been so lucky to have had 36 years but 9 had to suffice. I never remarried after Ray died. As for the kids fledging, yes, it's a difficult thing to cope with but you have each other and that is wonderful in itself.

Brian Miller said...

happy anniversary! your is a story that inspires those who go through the ups and downs...

Kate Hanley said...

What a beautiful tribute to a marriage that is probably more gut-wrenchingly real than most. Congratulations!

Betsy said...

Awww...Happy Anniversary! Congratulations on weathering the storms and getting it all back together. How very wonderful!

DJan said...

Happy anniversary! Thirty-six years together, no matter how rocky, is an accomplishment. I love your statement about "love with an open hand." It speaks to me, to what my relationship is with my guy. We married in 1994 after two of the rockiest years I can ever remember, and the fact that we made it work never ceases to amaze me. Thank you for this post, and I congratulate you both on your accomplishment.

California Girl said...

Alan: after so many years, there are still days we look at one another and think...

Pat: it is a choice, that's for sure.

Brenda: as the mother of a newly departed, you will become used to it and find much about your married life you want to recapture.
We did.

Helen: your nine years of happiness are probably more than many ever get even though that is small comfort. I don't know. My husband and I still fight like cats and dogs but I know I'd be lost without him. I just don't tell HIM that. :)

Brian: thank you. is it poem worthy?

Kate: "gut wrenchingly"...yes, a good descrip of our times together. hahahaha!

Betsy: Thank you. I'd say you're a pretty great inspiration for a strong marriage yourself.

DJan: It's rewarding to hear about relationships with problems can work. I have only known one couple whom I would describe as soul mates who never fought. They truly had an unbelievable marriage; not without tremendous ups and downs but w/o drama between themselves. The rest of us are just mortal.

The Silver Fox said...

Congratulations!

Rawknrobyn.blogspot.com said...

I agree, to offer each other that gift of space and trust, that is love at its finest.
Happy anniversary to both of you!
xoRobyn

#1Nana said...

Happy Anniversary! I'm apart from my spouse this week also and I have to admit that I'm quite enjoying it. I like these brief moments when I don't have to compromise about anything...and I get all the covers in bed!

Lorenzo — Alchemist's Pillow said...

Happy anniversary, CG, and congratulations for 36 of matrimony (matrimonius interruptus included!) and, most especially, for the spirit of making love work, knowing, accepting and recognizing how imperfect all of us and marriage can be, but being nonetheless striving to happy in its embrace.

Tanna at The Brick Street Bungalow said...

Well done, CG. Well done.

DawnTreader said...

Congratulations, and may there be many more happy years to come!

gayle said...

Congrats! I've been married 40 years and we have had our ups and downs too! So glad my husband has put up with me all these years!

jeannette said...

Happy anniversary, Friend! It's a great thing that you each worked on it to stay together -it requires stamina, hard work, and swallowing one's own needs and desires at times...and you did it (and probably more!). Letting go of one's "kids" can be very hard, especially when they live so far away -but very worth it!!