Published December 05, 2007 by
Fifty years of marriage - where have the years gone? That is a lot of anniversary gifts. However, four children, seventeen grandchildren and four… well almost five-great-grandchildren later, I can see where they've gone. When our parents were married for fifty years, they seemed so old. Why do I still feel young?
We were married during the big war, a four-day honeymoon and then separation for two years. Even though Peter and I went to high school together, we didn't really know each other. We exchanged ideas about what we wanted to do with our lives together through the letters we wrote while we were apart.
After the war, times were hard financially. A daughter was born after two years, followed by a son three years later, and twins 2 years after that. My parents died when I was young and we lived with my in-laws for a while. Theirs was the most beautiful marriage and a perfect model for us. They never exchanged a sharp word with each other-not in front of us, anyway.
Our lives have been filled with love for each other and for our children. We've tried by example to instill in them respect for each other, service to the community, and the necessity of charity. We both worked hard, and now, in our golden years, we're retired and enjoying the fruits of our labor. We try never to go to sleep angry with each other and always to say, "I love you."
I really believe we've had a fabulous fifty years of wedded bliss. If our families were all in town, we'd no doubt have a 50th anniversary party, complete with golden anniversary favors. Some downs, mostly ups, and even in our days of deepest and darkness despair we have the deepest respect for each other and, to my knowledge, have never, ever lied, deceived, or tried to cover up anything from each other.
We struggled through some lean years, not having any substantial finances behind us, but we loved playing house with our great family. Our four children are precious to us, different in so many ways that people wonder if they came from the same womb. But we love them equally.
My having a small business that I conducted from our home gave us the unusual opportunity to see a lot of each other, something not too many couples can enjoy. For us, with our similar likes and dislikes, it gave us the opportunity to discuss anything and everything - minor details that came to mind, we discussed right then and there. It really wasn't too much togetherness. On the contrary, it worked out great. When I retired finally, not long ago, we were so used to my being around that it was natural to spend time together without getting in each other's way. It was a mere continuation of a wonderful relationship.
So as a husband who's proud of his fifty years of marriage and hopes for many more, I believe that what contributes to our success is that we always talk out minor problems and differences that arise between us before they fester and get bigger. We hug each other often. It's good for our souls. We're considerate of each other and give in once in a while, even when giving in isn't what we'd like to do.