Scott came home from work a week or so ago and told me how someone asked how long we'd been married. He told them we'd just celebrated our tenth anniversary. Their comment? "Wow. Good for you guys. Isn't that a long time for submariners*?" Really?
I've heard the same thing all of you have, about 50% of marriages ending in divorce. And I know people who have gotten divorced. But is marriage really in such trouble that single digit anniversaries should enjoy extra emphasis on their length? Is being in the military such a strain that a decade deserves a 'wow'? Maybe.
Don't get me wrong. I do think being married for six or ten years deserves a little pat on the back and some celebration. I think every anniversary is special and wonderful. I love marriage and being married. On the other hand, though, why can't we celebrate it without making it seem like we've done something noteworthy by staying married. It's not like we held really still while getting a shot. We're talking about marriage!
It should probably also be noted that I have some pretty incredible examples of marriage to look to.
For starters, there are our parents. My Mom and Dad celebrated their 40th anniversary in April.
|Mom and Dad Foote (my parents)|
|Mom and Dad Nourse (Scott's parents)|
And just days ago, we wished Mom and Dad Gebel a happy 30th anniversary.
|Mom and Dad Gebel (Scott's parents)|
And our grandparents have really set the bar high. Grandma and Grandpa Fladie will celebrate 51 years just after ringing in the new year.
|Grandma and Grandpa Fladie (Scott's grandparents-Stepmom's side)|
|Grandma and Grandpa Foote (my grandparents-Dad's side)|
|Grandma and Grandpa Gebel (Scott's grandparents-Dad's side)|
|Grandma and Grandpa Goff (Scott's grandparent's-Mom's side)|
|Grandma and Grandpa Kral (my grandparents-mom's side)|
Now, at our wedding we did that little thing where all the married couples danced and the couple who was married the longest was left last on the dance floor and asked to give advice to the newlyweds. Grandma and Grandpa Kral were the ones who supplied us with some great advice, "Keep on kissing and you'll be married for hundreds of years, like us."
|Scott and I|
These are great questions...and I'm no expert (after all ten years is barely a drop in the bucket when there are hundreds of years to go) but in the next few weeks I'm going to look at a few key things I think make marriages good, healthy, happy, and long lasting. Hopefully you'll tune back in to see if you agree.
Until then...just keep kissing...
*After considering this comment for a while, it occurs to me that the guy who said it may not have been commenting on marriage as much as originally thought. On a submarine there are around 160 guys. Probably a third of them are single and many of the married ones are pretty young, meaning that they haven't likely been married all that long. I would estimate that only 15 or 20 guys on any one sub even have the potential of being married for double digits. In that light, perhaps we have been married a long time in the world of submariners.