‘Til Death Do Us Part

“Maybe it’s because I’m getting older, but I’ve been thinking a lot about you lately, Mom and Dad. I’ve been thinking back to all the ways you’ve cared for me – working hard, spending time, and encouraging me. I realize I haven’t told you often enough how much that means to me, because you really are great parents, two people I repsect and appreciate so much. I just wanted to make sure I didn’t let this time go by without letting you know how much I love you. Happy Anniversary”

Mom & Dad, I love you both so much. I am so proud to have you as my parents. In a nation plagued by divorce, I respect your marriage so much. Things may not always be easy, but you made a commitment and you stand true to your words. That is something that means so much to me. I can only hope that when I wed, that the commitments I make will be honored. I love & respect you both so much. I know I haven’t always been easy to handle & I’ve made some bad choices, but with parents & role models like you both it’s no wonder I turned out ok. One day, when I have kids & they’re my age (whoa, breaks please!) I can only hope I raise them as you raised me so that they too feel the love & respect that I feel for you both. That would be the ultimate reward. I’m not done growing, I’ve got plenty more to learn & experience but I want to thank you both for all you’ve done. The life lessons you’ve provided me will forever be with me. I can confidently face the world because of you both. I miss you & think of you every day but you’re both in my heart forever. I’m so lucky to have been raised in a home filled with love & lessons. I will never take that for granted in my life again. With all the love in my heart, pookie.

This past Monday (Feb 13, 2012) my parents celebrated their 30th wedding anniversary. First off, I feel like their 25th anniversary was just the other year, it’s crazy how quickly time goes by as you grow older. Since turning 20 (4 years ago) I feel like each year passes by a little faster than the one before. But that’s another story. But with that said, I have never been more proud of my parents in my life. My parents made a commitment and they have honored their commitment, and I don’t realize how much I take it for granted. It seems completely normal to me to have parents that occasionally fight, and go through tough times, but ultimately love each other and respect the vows they promised each other 30 years ago. I don’t know what it is to live in a house divided, so to say. And, I’ll go as far to say that even my very close friends growing up never experienced divorce. That’s not to say it didn’t exist in my neighborhood, high school, or county, it’s just that I’m not familiar with it on a personal level; I take for granted the “normalcy” I was so privileged to experience growing up.

It goes without saying that my parents marriage is far from “perfect”. Like every couple they have arguments, they get mad, they’ve been so mad they can’t stand each other — I mean jeeze, 30 years?! They know exactly what buttons to press and what to say or not say in order to get the other one just as mad or upset as they are. But what does it always, always come back to, no matter how angry, upset, or annoyed? LOVE. They LOVE each other. They honor and respect and are committed to each other. And that is quite a lesson to be taught without realizing it. My parents stand true to their words: they mean what they say, they say what the mean, and they stand true to their vows.

On the other hand, I’m not saying I disrespect anyone who has gone through divorce. Infidelity and personal unhappiness drive many marriages to end — I’m just commenting on the fact that I’m so blessed to have been born into a family that has stuck together through all the bad times, and the good times.

I am so proud of my parents, and I love them with all of my heart. And I can only hope that one day I too can share a commitment with “the one” man for me, through all times — hard, easy, good, bad, sick, healthy. For 30 years and counting my parents have stuck together and that’s all I can hope for in my future. A family that loves each other and respects each other. I’m thankful to have the parents I have, and I don’t think I say that or express that enough.

I love you Mom & Dad!

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