Arthur and I recently celebrated our anniversary, and it started me thinking about love, marriage and the way things have changed through the years. As a young child, I envisioned myself going to college, working in a career I loved, and being a wife and mother. It seemed a simple path, and I was determined to “have it all.” I feel it was a somehow easier time . Unfortunately, women didn’t have as many choices then, but we also had far less fear of commitment.
In the 1960’s, over 70% of the adults in our country were married, while in 2011 barely 50% of adults had tied the knot, according to a Pew Research Institute report presented that year. The numbers continue to dwindle, as gen-xers and millennials concentrate on their careers and their individual lives before finding their soulmates. Unfortunately, the older they get the more set in their ways they become.
Arthur and I were children when we met (16), children when we started dating (18), and though we didn’t think so , children when we married (22). We grew up together and never felt we were giving up anything of ourselves. People say that marriage takes a great deal of work, and I suppose it does, but for me it has always seemed easy. A labor of love, if you will. Don’t get me wrong, we have had our tough times, but it was always our togetherness that pulled me through them. I never resented compromise.
It is rare to completely get your way in marriage, but then it is rare to completely get your way in any aspect of life. The art of compromise can serve us well as we try to navigate the various roads we take. If I get my way a little less it is well worth it, because at the end of the day—-every day—-Arthur has my back, and I have his.
I realize that life evolves, and we must evolve as well. I know that one doesn’t need a marriage license to share a life, and one doesn’t need to share a life to be happy. There are advantages to eating when one wants, sleeping when one wants and being totally alone when one wants. There are advantages to not having to share one’s things and having the ability to leave a relationship when it stops being fun. The right marriage, however, with the right person is worth all of the little inconveniences along the way. When I hear Arthur’s key in the lock, and after all these years my heart still beats a little faster, I am glad that I chose the road that at this time might be less taken.
To celebrate our years together we are taking a vacation next week. We will be enjoying the southern hospitality (and yummy cooking) of Savannah, Georgia. Since we will not be in town, I will not be adding a blog/review next week but will return the week after fully rested and ready to write.
This week I am reaching out to the mommys and daddys in my audience with What If Everybody Said That? by Ellen Javernick (author) Colleen Madden (illustrator). This children’s book on the importance of basic kindness might be the perfect book for those who seem to have forgotten those basic childhood lessons.
As always a complete review of this book follows my blog.