Wednesday, January 23, 2008

A celebration: 35 years together

This weekend my parents, Don and Jeanette, will mark 35 years of having been married. Last weekend, 30 friends and family members gathered together to celebrate my parents' love, respect and support for each other. My mom and I planned a renewal of wedding vows ceremony with the help of our minister. We also planned a reception to follow at Spinnaker's restaurant.

During the ceremony, I spoke about what my parents' marriage means to me. Here are my notes:

When I look at my parents, I see a love that is not measurable. I see a love so strong it could stand up to the test of time. I have seen their love endure draught and flood….cold and heat.
Yes, even on days colder than today.

Or in the case of the day they met on chilly day June, 11 1972

Picture this….my mother sitting on the front stairs of her house in Cudahy contemplating about whether to go to Joan Michalets’ high school graduation. Not knowing Joan well, my mother was hesitant about going. What to do? So, she consulted her horoscope books.
The prediction…that she would find love.
My mom wondered who she could possibly meet? Joan’s cousin, perhaps?

Well, my mom did meet Joan’s cousin…my dad who approached her at the party wearing tight purple jeans and a purple sweater?
At this point in the story, I must interject. I give my mom a lot of credit for giving my dad the time of day in his purple sweater and jeans, even if it was a cold day.

My dad helped my mom with the buffet line. He was the perfect gentleman and complimented her on green eye shadow. He further surprised her with his musical interests, which ranged from hard rock to the gentle Andy Williams.

Later, my mom recounted that she questioned if this man was for real. Maybe it was dad’s Mustang Mach One that he took her home in, his gentleman-like ways or the horoscope books. But the two quickly became a couple, going for bike rides to Dairy Queen, visiting Devil’s Lake and going to concerts.

The past 35 years have had rough points. Where many couples may have fractured and called it quits, my parents have supported each other through the high points and the low points. And the high points are too many to list.
Just a short list of some of their shared activities:
*Honeymoon in Montreal and Quebec City
* Trip to California with the whole Michalets clan across the desert to see Ellen (wish that I could have gone too)
* Many trips to the Canadian Grand Priz, to Great-Grandma’s house, to Cape Cod, Stratford, Ontario for the Shakespeare Fest
*Members of the Porsche Club and bowling teams (a must in the early 1980s)
*proud parents of many dogs: Bobby, Fozzy, Bosco, Biscuits and Jazzy and even more parakeets
* owned a bed and breakfast for 5 years in Vermont
* Vacations spent with Grandma and Grandpa at Devil’s Lake
* the restoration of several old homes (an activity that can break or make a couple)
* Active members of Good Shepherd United Methodist Church
* creating so many wonderful Christmas memories
* two books and numerous magazine stories
* Making the most of each day given to them as a couple and a family

The love they share and their commitment to each other has greatly shaped who I have become and how I treat others. I only pray that one day I may have what they have. I thank God every day for blessing me with two loving, supportive parents who will be there for me no matter. I also thank him for bringing my parents together. May today be the start of another wonderful, blessed 35 years of marriage. Congratulations!

Mom, me and Dad

"Love is patient, love is kind. It is not jealous, (love) is not pompous, it is not inflated, it is not rude, it does not seek its own interests, it is not quick-tempered, it does not brood over injury, it does not rejoice over wrongdoing but rejoices with the truth. It bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. "
-- 1 Corinthians 13 4-8

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