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Renewing for 44 more years

Thursday, April 25, 2013


Engagement photo: Larry and Jeanne 1969 (watch out for that hair!)

Every year my dear hubby (DH) and I decide (on our wedding anniversary) if we want to renew the contract for yet another year. He still calls me his first wife. Today marks 44 times we have come to that milestone in our relationship. One would think after 44 years that the routine would get boring and tedious, and that we might have thoughts about NOT renewing yet again.

Well, those folks haven't met my Larry. Larry (my DH of 44 years and several minutes) has always had the ability (sometimes against my best resolve) to make me laugh at what life brings. He sees the humor and has a witty comeback in nearly every situation. He is a "half full" kind of guy while I tend to be more on the pessimistic side (not terribly, but I would see half empty in many situations).

One day while we were having a quiet moment at home, he said, "Good thing Adam's name wasn't Albert."

"WHAT??? Why?" I asked

"Yea," he said. "I would hate to put this book down and say to myself it is time to get up and Albert (instead of up and Adam)"...groan. There have been lots of groans in our lives together, groans I secretly admire. I never know what will come next and I'm always surprised at the way his mind works.

When we had been married only about 3 years (and had the first of our 3 children in diapers), I was teaching school and he was completing his degree. On one occasion, I came home tired and well, irritable, after a particularly difficult day. Our agreement for this time in our lives was that he would fix dinner each night and I would clean up. I was irritated that dinner wasn't at least on the stove, let alone on the table (he got caught up in a particularly interesting book and in playing with the baby--both much more fun than the domestic dinner fixing chore).

I suppose I was less than understanding. I threw a bit of a tizzy-fit that night, scolded him about keeping up his responsibility and then stomped into the bedroom to grade some tests. He took it all in, said little in return, but went straight to work on dinner. It was particularly good that night, and I apologized and thanked him for his efforts. He just smiled.

Later that evening when I was cleaning up and putting away the dishes, a wad of yellow notebook theme paper hit me in the back of the head and fell to the floor. I bent to pick it up and throw it away, but instead I opened up the paper to reveal a short message he had written to me: "Meet me by the refrigerator in 10 minutes. Signed, your secret admirer."

Needless to say, the irritation went away and was replaced (as usual) by laughter. And I DID show up for our date at the refrigerator that night.

Yes, for 44 years now, he has made me laugh through tears and smile through trials. We are both older, out of shape and a little forgetful, but each memory is still sweet.

So Larry, I guess I will renew for another year. Meet me by the rocking chair in 15 minutes. Signed, your biggest fan.
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