Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Love and Respect

Today is our 24th wedding anniversary. I deliberately picked a date that could not be easily forgotten...and provided myself, my husband, and all our family and friends with the ultimate April Fool's Day joke.

Twenty-four years of marriage...over 28 years together all told...creates one hell of a history. We have had many adventures - both good and bad, been poor, been not-poor, climbed mountains, walked prairies, suffered through yucky humid climates and dry, drought-ridden climates, survived a terrifying wildfire, raised a great son, welcomed our wonderful daughter-in-law and joyous grandson into the family, fought, been happy together, been sad together, been mad together (and mad at one another now and again), and through it all loved and respected one another.

That's the key, little ones, love and respect. Love without respect is hollow...empty. If you cannot respect the person you are journeying with, then it's all for naught. The vows we exchanged on that wonderful Sunday those many years ago reflected our respect and love for one another then, as they do now...they are from a poem written by Susan Polis Schutz, and they hold very true to this day:

I Promise That I Will Love You
~by Susan Polis Schutz

I cannot promise you that I will not change
I cannot promise you that I will not have many different moods
I cannot promise you that I will not hurt your feelings sometimes
I cannot promise you that I will not be erratic
I cannot promise you that I will always be strong
I cannot promise you that my faults will not show
But -
I do promise you that I will always be supportive of you
I do promise you that I will share all my thoughts and feelings with you
I do promise you that I will give you freedom to be yourself
I do promise you that I will understand everything that you do
I do promise you that I will be completely honest with you
I do promise you that I will laugh and cry with you
I do promise you that I will help you achieve all your goals
But -
Most of all I do promise you that I love you

The secret to a successful, happy, and long marriage is love AND respect. Take this lesson to heart, little ones....

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