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Monday, October 5, 2015

40 Years Without a Restraining Order

This Saturday, (10-10-15) marks our 40th wedding anniversary.

I know. I find it hard to believe too.



Firstly, because I don't feel that old. And secondly, because it went by REALLY fast.

We have company all this week so we'll probably celebrate properly once we're alone again. For now, we'll partake of soft-shell crabs and lobster bisque, and toast another year.

I'll never forget the judge who married us. She was an old black, Baptist justice of the peace who believed young people didn't have the foggiest notion what marriage was about. (She was right!) She did her best to scare the bejeezus out of us, but we stood our ground and assured her we were ready. (Ha!)

I remember her fondly because she was so stern and mean. I know now looking back, she was only looking out after our best interest. I guess she figured that if she couldn't scare us, we might be strong enough for whatever lay ahead.

Once the deed was done, she was all smiles and wished us well, but for a few tense minutes, I wasn't sure she was going to let us marry.

Thank you, Judge Armstrong. When we toast our 40 years, we'll be toasting you too, for giving us the benefit of the doubt.

I'm often asked what makes for a long, happy marriage. Lots of things come into play and it's different for every relationship. For me, it's honesty, equality, and a big dose of seeing the funny side of things. Life is hard. When both people have a good sense of humor it can lighten the load.

I think I chose wisely. I knew Greg would be the kind of guy who would be there even when times got rough.

What do you want most in a mate? Was it easy to find that kind of person?

38 comments:

Sandra Almazan said...

Happy Anniversary!

I wanted someone smart, funny, and kind. I was lucky enough to meet him in college and stubborn enough to endure a long-distance relationship and fifteen years of dating before we tied the knot. We've only been married ten years, but we've been a couple for twenty-five. Still have a way before we catch up with you!

Madeline Mora-Summonte said...

Happy Anniversary!!!

My husband is my best friend. And he makes me laugh. A lot. :)

Maria Zannini said...

Sandra: Smart is important! I like smart people. They make me think harder.

Stubbornness helps too. I should know. :)

Maria Zannini said...

Madeleine: An excellent combination. In the end we all need our best friends.

betty said...

Happy early anniversary! I am thinking the judge that married you guys probably has passed on already, but wouldn't it be nice to let her know you guys made it and are still married after 40 years? I am in agreement with you; it does go by so fast!!! We'll be married 35 years a day after your 40th; where did that time go? In a mate someone who will go the distance, who will stick it out through thick and thin and will honor their commitment :)

betty

Lynn Viehl said...

I never actually wanted a mate; mine just walked into my life 31 years ago and smiled at me and I was done for. I was too smart for love at first sight, of course, so I spent the next six years trying to weasel my way out of it. Didn't matter. He was done for, too, so he wouldn't let me (example: he asked me to marry him, I said no, and he kept asking every day after that for six months until I finally gave up and said yes. The man is persistent.)

To survive all the bumps in the relationship road I think you have to really like and want the best for each other. When it's genuine, mutual respect can overcome just about everything love can't handle.

Susan Gourley/Kelley said...

To live so long with another person, you have to be unselfish, patient and like you say, see the funny side of things. My husband and I laugh together a lot.

B.E. Sanderson said...

Happy Anniversary!! I doubt we'll ever make 40 years, but that's because we got married late. I had a devil of a time finding him. 17 years of dating and countless bad relationships, moving all over the darn country, near misses and heartache. Finally, I found him and I'm not letting go.

I think part of what makes us happily married is we have very similar life philosophies, we don't get in each other's way, we don't harp on each other about the small stuff, we enjoy each other's company while each having our own pursuits, and he stays out of my way when I need writing, coffee, chocolate, or my hormone shot. ;o)

Stacy McKitrick said...

Happy Anniversary! We'll be celebrating our 36th in December. I had no idea what to look for in a mate. I had barely dated anyone until I met my hubby (and I was only 21). He made me laugh and he was cute and he liked me! That pretty much did me in. A year after we met, we got married. It didn't hurt that he had orders for Alaska (we were stationed in Arizona). Guess he didn't want to leave me behind. :)

Mike Keyton said...

Many congratulations to both. We've been married for over 30 years. Can't remember exactly how many, and I daren't ask Bernadette because she, quite rightly with think I should. Ref marital longevity, smartness and humour, I'm thinking that Bernadette has plenty to laugh at :)

You know, I've never tasted soft crabs. How sad. I'm struck by soft crab envy

Maria Zannini said...

Betty: I've always felt the biggest reason marriages fail is that one or both parties aren't willing to stick it out. It's hard, there's no denying it, but if the marriage is worth saving, it's worth trying.

Re; The judge is gone. I found out later she was the aunt to a lady I worked with at the Chicago Tribune.

Anne Gallagher said...

Happy Anniversary!! May you have 40 more years with the love of your life!!

I can't answer your question because the man I'm looking for doesn't exist. At least not on this planet. And if he does, he's already been taken.

Marlene Dotterer said...

Congratulations! What an awesome milestone. I wish you forty more years, even though you'll be literally holding each other up by then.

Jackie Burris said...

Maria and Greg, Happy Anniversary early. May you have many, many more years together!

As someone who also got married young, I was 19 and he was 21, it was a year of dating and learning that our compatible taste in music as well as food and our ability to talk about anything and everything without effort made us first very comfortable with each other and later very much aware that we complemented each other in ways that no one else had.

We were also friends first for a few years as we went to the same school, had the same playmates and lived on the same street at opposite ends so that set the stage for getting us together as far as dating once we both graduated High School 2 years apart.

Despite my Father and the Methodist Preacher having reservations we married and despite a few upheavals have had a good life together. Preacher is gone and so is my Dad but before my Father passed he had come to realize what a good man my husband is and considered him to be a son, which made me happier than I expected it too at the time he told me so.

12/11/1981-12/11/2015 will be 34 years of trial and error, good times and bad and we still are friends and more importantly still happily married. Also no restraining order needed in all those years! :-)

Maria Zannini said...

Lynn: I kind of fought against it too because I had big plans to get my degree in advertising and work for one of the big agencies, but life has a way of making things interesting. We were very young but the opportunity to travel across the country was too tempting--and I was traditional enough not to go without proper wedlock. :)

Sarah Ahiers said...

Congrats!
I haven't even been alive for 40 years ;)

Author R. Mac Wheeler said...

Wishing you another happy 40!

Maria Zannini said...

Susan: I wonder if values have changed with today's youth. Like their jobs, maybe they don't expect to stay with one person for their whole adult lives.

Maria Zannini said...

BE: Having similar life philosophies is critical. I can't imagine the kind of fights couples would have if they didn't share some common ground.

Maria Zannini said...

Stacey: I wasn't looking for love--or a husband, but I found both.

Maria Zannini said...

Mike: Shame on you, not remembering when you were married. (Now I've got something to hang over you.) Apparently, Bernadette also has loads of patience.

Re: soft shelled crabs
We'll have to remedy that when you come for a visit. It's a delicacy one shouldn't miss.

Maria Zannini said...

Anne: Never say never. Sometimes the right one is not in plain sight.

Maria Zannini said...

Marlene:
Re: you'll be literally holding each other up

That's pretty much happening now.

Maria Zannini said...

Jackie: It sounds like you guys literally knew each other all your lives. That makes it even more special.

Maria Zannini said...

Sarah: You'll get there sooner than you think. ;-)

Maria Zannini said...

Mac: Thanks, Mac!

Mason Canyon said...

Maria, congratulations on your upcoming anniversary. May you be blessed with 40 more wonderful years and then be able to decide if you want to go another 40. :)

Jenny Schwartz said...

Happy Anniversary!!!

Angela Brown said...

Happy Anniversary to you and the hubs.

As for a mate for me, well, I try not to laugh too hard at that thought lol!

Maria Zannini said...

Mason: I told him when this life was over I expect him to come back with me for the next life. :)

Maria Zannini said...

Jenny: Thanks, Jenny!

Maria Zannini said...

Angela: I've seen you in a room. You can talk to anyone and I'm willing to bet you can have any man you put your eye on.

LD Masterson said...

Happy beleted anniversary. My parents married very young and one of my mom's favorite songs was Too Young (made popular by Nathan King Cole in the early 50's). It begins "They tried to tell us we're too young..." and ends with "...we were not too young at all." :-)

Diane Carlisle said...

Congrats on your 40th! :D

Maria Zannini said...

Linda: Looking back, I can see why our parents were so worried, but it all worked out in the end. :)

Maria Zannini said...

Diane: Thanks, Diane!

Suzanne Brandyn said...

Congratulations Maria. Wow 40 years. I admire you. My parents have been married for 63 years.

What I look for most in a marriage is honesty. I've been married for 7 years this time around. lol... last one 16yrs.

I think communication is vital. If you cannot communicate daily something is wrong.

But all marriages, relationships have the ups and downs. After all, we are all human. :) Congratulations once again. Awesome. :)

Maria Zannini said...

Suzanne: My admiration is for your parents. 67 years is an inspiration.

Give them a hug for me.