This Saturday marks my parents’ 45th wedding anniversary. As a child, I didn’t need to try to connect a battery’s positive side to a negative to learn that opposites truly do attract. It was clear early on that the unique, and far differentiating qualities each parent brought to this partnership were like diagonal spokes in a wheel that would keep a marriage spinning for a lifetime.
The older I get, the more I value the relationship my parents share. Like lyrics to the Maroon 5 song, they’ve taught me that it’s not always rainbows and butterflies, it’s compromise. It’s knowing the mistakes you’ve made will never clout your partner’s true feelings toward you. It’s about give and take; you’re not always going to approve of every move your partner makes but you must realize you’ll do things they’re not crazy about too. At the end of the day, you’ve got to remember, you’re both taking you’re first and only shot at this life. You’ve got to learn together and grow together and above all else, you’ve got to laugh together.
There’s something very special going on this week. Do you know what it is?
Dad: Is it something on TV? Me: No. Dad: One of those super moons again? Me: No. Dad: Oh! Of course! How could I forget? Gamecock football! Me: No.
Mom (looks at the calendar): Ohhh, I know! It’s the 23rd of August!
Me: Dad, you know what the 23rd of August is?
Dad: Yes, I think it’s someone’s anniversary.
Me: Whose anniversary is it?
Dad: Your mom’s.
What will you do for mom on your anniversary?
Dad: The 23rd is Saturday right?
Me: Yep, it is.
Dad: Perfect. Then I’ll watch football with her. Maybe go out on a boat ride.
Me: But those are your favorite things to do, not hers.
Dad: It’s about time she learns to do the things I like. I can even catch her a fish and cook it.
Me: She doesn’t eat fish.
What was the best surprise you’ve ever given her for your anniversary?
Dad: That’s easy; I bought her a boat.
Mom: Yeah, a boat that I didn’t want AND had to pay for! How’d I get so lucky?
What’s the best gift you’ve ever given him/her?
Mom: I always buy him his clothes because if I don’t, oh Heaven help us! He’d be a sight for sore eyes.
Dad: Another easy one. Me.
What’s the sweetest thing he’s/she’s ever given you?
Mom: You and your brother.
Mom: That’s all you can think of?
Dad: What’s sweeter than fudge?
What’s the meanest thing she’s ever done to you?
Dad: Brought kids into the house.
What’s his/her best quality?
Mom: Well, he used to be nice.
Me: It’s not really a past tense question.
Mom: Sorry, it’s all I got. As time runs on, his qualities run out.
Dad: How much time do I have to make up an answer?
Me: You don’t get to make up an answer.
Dad: Oh. Then I guess I’d say her voice.
Mom: Normally you say you don’t want to hear my voice so that’s really sweet.
Dad: Thanks. Looks like I’m off the hook to say anything nice for a long time.
What advice would you have for a young couple on their wedding day?
Mom: Remember you are two separate people; but you are still one couple. Each person should be able to do their own thing, yet come back together. It’s not about doing everything together; it’s about enjoying the minutes you do spend together. You should be independent but still be a couple. That’s the only way I’ve kept my sanity all these years because Lord knows I need a break from that man!
Dad: Don’t do it.