The Other Side of Sunset

The Other Side of Sunset

Monday, March 30, 2015

A Real-Life Anniversary

Once upon a time, a couple of farm kids walked out of the Pratt United Methodist Church, eager to start a life together.
They had no idea what they were getting into on that March day in 1981. She was 23. He was 25.
That young couple has aged a bit in 34 years. We have a few more aches and pains and a whole lot more experience. 

I always tell Randy we're lucky we survived the honeymoon. He took me skiing at Keystone. He had been skiing before. I had not. He was smart enough to know that he shouldn't try and teach me himself. I took lessons the first day. I was miserable. It was late in March, and despite the snow all around, it was fairly warm, especially when repeatedly picking myself up from yet another fall. I had on ski overalls, a ski jacket, a scarf and gloves. I had too many layers for as hard as I was working. The warmer temperatures made the slopes icy.  By lunchtime when we met, I was drenched in sweat and totally discouraged. Let's not ask Randy about what kind of mood I was in, OK?

It was his first true introduction to one of my less attractive peculiarities: I hate being bad at things. It was true as a high school sophomore in Algebra. It was true 34 years ago on a ski slope in Colorado. I know we can't be good at everything. But I'd sure like to be.

I did get a little bit better at skiing the next day and the day after that. As long as we stayed on the green slopes, I stayed upright ... most of the time. We actually went back to Colorado to ski several times after that, and I learned to like it.

To add to the honeymoon challenges, I had a horrible toothache one night. (I had my first root canal after we got back from the honeymoon. He should have examined my mouth for soundness prior to marrying me. Yes, I know he does that to cows now, but he was wise enough not to comment about that while on the honeymoon. He did make a reference to calving during our first labor and delivery experience. For you newlywed farm men: That's probably not the best choice of words to a wife in labor. Just a little free advice for you!)

But, we made it through the honeymoon. And on Saturday, we celebrated 34 years together by helping with an all-church clean-up. Do we know how to have a good time or what?!

But you know what? Those are the things that make a marriage. It's not about a wedding one day in a church in front of a bunch of friends and family, though I'm grateful for that celebration.

A marriage is made in the trenches, working together - whether that's on the farm ... or cleaning the church. It's about life and death. Joy and pain. Success and failure. Hospitals for celebration of births, for surgeries and for saying goodbye.
We may look a little different 34 years later. There's more to love (in more ways than one). But we are still smiling ... and thankful!

8 comments:

  1. Belated congratulations. You do know how to have fun. We've had a few anniversaries like that, but I wouldn't trade them. I'm also happy to hear the church is making good use of volunteer labor. In the past we've been a part of churches that pay for everything and it wasn't a good experience. The huge church we belong to now believes in using the talents of its members and has a motto of worship plus 2. Those 2 are study and service in the church and community. I've found it is a terrific way to engage our congregation.

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    1. I should have also said that Randy had flowers for me in one of the rooms we cleaned. We also went out to eat Saturday night in Hutch (mainly to get medicine that didn't get mailed - one side effect of being married 34 years, I guess - ha!)

      We had a good group show up to work, which was nice and made things go more quickly.

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  2. Happy Wedding Anniversary!!! My sincerest congratulations to you both. Love that you included your wedding photos in this post. You look absolutely gorgeous. May there be many more years of wedded bliss for you both.

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    1. Thanks, Lynda! I'm so glad to have the wonderful photos of a wonderful day.

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  3. Wow thirty four years---how wonderful. What fun to look back and remember.
    Happy Anniversary
    MB

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  4. BTW: I am going to try the mini meatloaves from your previous post.
    MB

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    1. Thanks so much! And I hope you enjoy the meatloaf recipe.

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  5. This is the place for a beautiful wedding. The ceremony was held banquet halls in Chicago, which commands a breath-taking view of the city. I only wish I appreciated it more when I was there. Oh well. You live and learn.

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