Mary Jane and I will be married 41 years next month!
Time has not only flown by…it seems like it has been just a few days!
We began married life by living in her house trailer…and, in a few months, moved up…to a garage that had been converted into an apartment.
Later, we purchased the house, that the garage/apartment went to…and lived there for 22 years.
Our house had four rooms…and we raised two sons there…and we were a close family!
In 1978, when we married, I was earning $70 per week. I was driving a 1963 Ford Fairlane…with a, sizable hole, in the floor on the passenger side!
I was hired by Southern Illinois University at Carbondale on October 10, 1978. My starting pay was $5.54 per hour…and we thought that we were rich!
I was 43 years old when we moved to Carbondale…to what we still refer to as the new house.
I, often, wonder what couples are looking for or expecting when they marry? Are they searching for someone who is different from them and a unique human being…or are they searching for someone to …clone?
I remember installing wood paneling in our little home, in 1981, when Mary Jane was pregnant with our first son, Aaron.
Now, allow me to explain…I have never been a carpenter…and when I endeavor to do carpentry….or plumbing….or drywall work…or…I tend to utter colorful language…in extreme!
It was Halloween night…and as I struggled to saw and then nail up the, patterned, wood paneling, which was all the rage in 1978, Mary Jane, quietly and patiently climbed over the paneling and saw horses and answered our door to distribute candy to the holiday revelers!
Two…very different personalities…working together…for a common goal!
We enjoyed a wonderful lunch today at a locally owned restaurant, Keepers Quarters, and an adult beverage…and I reflected on what a wonderful and diverse and, many times, challenging….life that we have shared!
We often are talking with each other and agreeing, vigorously, and later discover…that we were agreeing on two different subjects…
Life is work…and married life is having a partner to work on the project with you!
Life brings us, all, reversals and friendships that go astray and work relationships…that evaporate…and illness…but not loneliness…because you have a life partner that gives a damn about you!
Women…do not look for the charming prince…look for the man that is always there to listen to your thoughts and hopes and fears and challenges!
Men…look for the woman that will stand by your side…when you do not deserve it…and who will help you and enjoy living with you…when you do not enjoy living with your self!
Women…seek a man that is not trying to be the, star, of all women’s heart’s, but the, star, of yours!
It boils down to the simple truth that a successful relationship is based on, mutual, trust and being with someone who is not living, primarily, in their head…but is living, often, for their partner.