Today is a special day for us, our 17th wedding anniversary. And what a wonderful seventeen years it has been!
Terry and I had both experienced bad marriages before and neither of us was looking to get involved with anyone. In fact, when it did happen it took us both by surprise. We had known each other for about ten years, she ran a commercial glass shop that advertised in the weekly newspaper I owned and I was always impressed with both her beauty and her intelligence, not to mention the fact that she was a very nice person. We’ve all met beautiful, intelligent people that are not very nice once you get to know them. Not with Terry, she’s beautiful inside and out.
Terry always wore a ring so I assumed she was married. I was in a bad marriage and when it ended I swore I was never going to make that mistake again. Famous last words. Soon after I became single we both realized that there was a chemistry between us and an attraction that was growing. Terry also told me that she had been single for fourteen years and the reason she wore the ring was to put off anybody who showed any interest, because she had her own marriage horror stories and she wasn’t making that mistake again either!
On our first date we went to the movies and then to a 24-hour restaurant where we sat and talked until daylight. Two weeks later, our second date was at our town’s Fall Festival. At the time, I was on the board of directors of the Women’s Shelter and the town council was supposed to help our fundraiser by taking turns in a dunking booth. It was about 60 degrees at 7500 feet elevation and they all suddenly decided that falling into the cold water wasn’t dignified and backed out. So I put on a pair of swimming trunks and climbed inside.
Being the publisher of a small town newspaper means you are going to make a lot of friends and a lot of enemies. One of those friends ran the local radio station and was doing a live remote broadcast from the festival. He invited anybody who wanted to have some fun to come down and try to dunk me. And for the next three hours a long line of people were lined up throwing balls and dunking the fat guy. The price of three balls to throw kept going up and they still kept coming. The dunking booth was a canvas bag with a wire frame, and me being so short, I had to climb the frame to get back onto the seat. By the time I was done I was blue and had bloody toes from crawling up that darned canvas bag! But we had earned $3,000 for the shelter, so it was well worth it. Terry said I looked so much like a little Smurf that she felt sorry for me, so she took me home and kept me. Except for when she was in the hospital during her cancer treatment, we’ve never spent a night apart since then.
It wasn’t always easy because we both have strong personalities, and when we got together we were both in our mid-40s and pretty set in our ways. We had to learn to compromise, to communicate, and most importantly, learn to trust again. But it was worth it in so many ways. We’re not only married, we truly are best friends and are never happier than when it’s just the two of us. The first thing we say when we open our eyes in the morning is I love you, and it’s the last thing we say to each other before we fall asleep at night. It’s been a wonderful seventeen years, and I’m looking forward to many, many more together.
Have you entered this week’s Free Drawing yet? This week’s prize is an audiobook of Gun Shy, the fifth book in Ben Rehder’s excellent Blanco County mystery series. I’m a big fan of Ben’s small town Texas series, and if you try it you will be, too. To enter, all you have to do is click on this Free Drawing link or the tab at the top of this page and enter your name in the comments section at the bottom of that page (not this one). Only one entry per person per drawing please, and you must enter with your real name. To prevent spam or multiple entries, the names of cartoon or movie characters are not allowed. The winner will be drawn Sunday evening.
Thought For The Day – Love doesn’t make the world go round, but it makes the ride worthwhile!