This week my husband and I celebrated our 35th wedding anniversary. When we were newlyweds, I would see older couples at restaurants holding hands, and I would always point and say, “That’s you and me in 30 years.”
And here we are 35 years later, with three grown children and three grandsons. It’s hard to believe that we have become the older couple.
I knew my husband and I were going to be together forever after our second date. It is hard to describe what it was that made me feel this way, but we both felt it early into our relationship.
Neither of us had connected with another person in that way before. When I was with him, it felt like the peace you feel when you are watching the sun set, and the exhilaration of a wild roller coaster ride, all wrapped up in one.
We immediately became everything to each other, and we have been having fun ever since.
I still look at my husband and I see that handsome 24-year-old who made me blush just by the way he would look at me.
I have always told my children that if you have to work really hard at being happy in a relationship, then that might not be the right one for you.
When you are in love, and you love the right way, you always take care of your partner. And when you both make your relationship a priority and you don’t take each other for granted, your relationship grows strong.
When we met we were young, in love, and crazy about each other, and that has only grown stronger over the years.
When we first got married neither of us realized how special our relationship was; we just assumed all marriages were the same. Thirty-five years later, we realize how rare it is to find what we have, and we see how lucky we are.
A marriage is never without some struggles, and though ours never involved our relationship, life has placed obstacles in our path.
We have faced every issue together, side by side, always supporting each other and looking for ways to make the most of the situation.
Life is hard enough by itself. Having someone to lean on when you are going through difficult times is a gift.
Next year, we will be empty-nesters, and as much as I will miss my daughter (I can’t think of her graduating without getting teary-eyed) I am looking forward to having my husband all to myself — to packing our suitcases at the spur of the moment and taking off somewhere for the weekend like we did before we had children.
There is nothing sweeter than being with the one you love and knowing that no matter what, he will be waiting for you at the end of the day.
Scottish poet James Thomson said it best: “But happy they, the happiest of their kind, whom gentle stars unite; and in one fate their hearts, their fortunes, and their beings blend!”
Happy anniversary, my love. I am looking forward to the next 35 years!
Maria Luisa Salcines is a freelance writer, and certified parent educator with The International Network for Children and Families in Redirecting Children’s Behavior and Redirecting for a Cooperative Classroom. Follow her on Twitter @PowerOfFamily or contact her at her website at www.redirectingchildrenrgv.org.