It’s hard to imagine my parents ever dating. Of course they did long before I existed and while I was growing up too, but I only recall babysitters not the two of them going out for the evening.
I can’t help but wonder if we’d be at their favorite restaurant tonight dining all together as a family or would my father insist on a having a “cook out” and inviting a few friends over too. Just bring yourself, he’d say when asked what could be contributed to the gathering.
Maybe with the help of me or my sister, my father would have made reservations at a hip new eatery. He’d hate every minute of the meal but would go through it with smile on his face and rise to leave as soon as the check was paid. My dad did not enjoy the restaurant dining experience in the least bit. He liked being at home and was always ready for the next thing so it left him antsy in restaurants.
I’m certain my dad would have enlisted help picking out a piece of sapphire jewelry, the classic gift given on this occasion. My mother would opt for a silly over sentimental gift for him and card that said it all because she was unable.
I bet my sister and I would have gone in on a gift together for them. For their 25th anniversary we presented them with an engraved decorative pewter plate we bought at Things Remembered. We’d have to do better than that, it has been another 20 years. A trip maybe? I always dreamed of sending them on a cruise. Why I have no idea, especially since my mother had severe motion sickness and my dad’s need for his own space.
I wish I had known my parents without children, just them, as a couple. I regret not asking them more about their early years together. I want to hear again how they met, when exactly they knew they had found The One and after all these years together, what makes their marriage work and has there ever been a time when one of them wanted to walk away. I’d like to thank them for being such great marriage role models, sticking together, sticking it out.
If they were alive, my parents would be celebrating their 45th wedding anniversary today.