Yesterday, at different stages of my life was a day of great importance.
May 6th -ah yes, that's the date that this year should have marked my 36th Wedding Anniversary. Well, it was 36 years ago on that date that I got married but unfortunately, we were very lucky to have survived living eight LOOONNNGG years together. Definitely was not marital bliss, that's for sure.
There have been times over the past 28 years since we divorced that I have questioned my sanity because I took that big leap of faith on May 6, 1972 to begin with. Whatever was I thinking? Whatever had I been drinking could easily enough have been asked back then too.
I realized several years back but a goodly number of years after our wedding and divorce all took place that we probably were ill-fated from the start. Too many differences in expectations and too little knowledge of those factors as well. Add to that, the impatience that one could perhaps say came with my generation of women who many felt were incomplete if not married. (Heck, there's a lot of that still going on today as well though.) I do feel, in my case, that may have played a very important part on my decisions, my logic which was, in retrospect, pretty unlogical back then too.
But then, as I look around me now, I realize had I not taken those ill-fated steps of marriage, I wouldn't have the family I have today. I have three of the most fantastic children that I can call my own and had I not married their Dad, who knows what I might have ended up with, ya know.
I'm blessed now too with three gorgeous grandkids, three great step-grandkids too!
And, add to that, since my ex quit drinking almost 15 years ago now, the kids all have pretty darned good relationships with him and even he and I can converse, joke, tease each other about lots of things too these days.
That's not to say that I don't have times when I am remorseful that our marriage didn't pan out. I see my good friend down the street from me who has now been married for almost 43 years, another childhood friend and her husband just celebrated their 46th wedding anniversary while other neighbors of mine have been married for 52 years now as has a cousin of mine too. My grandparents were married for 56 years before my Grandpa died but my parents were not near as lucky as even I was as they were only married for 14 months before my Dad died. I do marvel at people who can adjust to living together as man and wife for so many years and still be able to appreciate each other.
I had thought too of posting a picture of my ex and me on our wedding day however, my disc drive isn't working now and those old pictures I have saved all on those old type discs so they aren't currently accessible for me with my computer. Probably a blessing in disguise too for you, my readers eyes as well, come to think of it.
The other reason this date was one of importance in my life is because one of my Dad's three sisters was born on this date 100 years ago as a matter of fact. She was seven years younger than my Dad but was the oldest of his sisters - my Aunt Lizzie. And she passed away two years ago on this date as well. Enter and exit on the same date -just 98 years in between.
She was quite a character in her own right too. A fighter from the time she was a toddler as she had polio sometime back then -not sure of her age at the time but I think she was 3 maybe 4 years old at the time. The doctor who treated her though advised my grandparents to purchase a tricycle for her to try to help her leg that had been affected and somehow, on a poor coal miner's wages, with by then, seven other children to feed, they managed to acquire said trike for my aunt and as a result, although her one leg was still shorter than the other, she managed to hide this factor quite well over the years.
She was a reader, a lover of crossword puzzles (as I am too) and a teacher. She taught first grade for many, many years and people who can teach kids at that age have my deepest admiration! She was also very feisty at times in her later life. My Aunt Mike, the baby of the family, commented to me on numerous occasions about how Aunt Lizzie would sometimes say things that seemed a bit on the sharp side and I remember telling Aunt Mike then that someday, when she too was over 80 years old, she would be able to do the same thing -tell people exactly what she wanted to say, you know. And darned if Aunt Mike didn't take me at my word too once she passed that 80 year mark!
My aunts -these two sisters especially -were devoted to each other and for more years than I can think of they always had supper together too. They lived about 4-5 miles apart and always would have supper together at Aunt Mike's house. Even if the weather was atrocious - snowing, sleet, even freezing rain - if Aunt Lizzie couldn't drive down to Aunt Mike's house - the family homestead - herself, Aunt Mike would drive in and pick her up and then, take her back home after supper! It was a crazy thing for her to do because of the risk factor involved but they were both that determined to spend quality time over a meal with each other every day it was somehow possible to do that.
Just counting the blessings I have had in my life - both of which made May 6th a very special day for me.