Forty Years

Tomorrow is my parents’ 40th wedding anniversary. Forty damn years.  It is mind-boggling to me to think about that…I can’t get my head around spending that much time with anyone.

As I’ve gotten older, I’ve realized that every marriage has chapters, like a novel. From my outsider’s perspective, I can identify a few happy ones and a few…less happy…ones in my parents’ marriage. Something has shifted in the last few months, I think, and maybe they are happier now.

I sat on the deck this weekend and listened to them talking in the kitchen about nothing in particular, about the day-to-day details of their lives as husband and wife, and realized, in a moronically belated flash, that their lives no longer focus solely on being parents.

I have watched them struggle a bit over the past few years, learning how to communicate with each other again as Kerry and I moved further away from our family life and into our own lives.  I think this new house is a good thing for them — perhaps it’s a bit easier to talk about paint and plaster and floors than the things that they put aside as individuals and as a couple to make sure Kerry and I had everything we needed.

We all have lists of the things we wouldn’t be caught replicating from our parents’ relationships, but I am grateful every day that I never once had to doubt I was loved fiercely.  Thanks so much, Mom and Daddy, and happy anniversary.

Haddonfield, NJ, 1983

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