Please join me in congratulating our parents on their forty-eighth wedding anniversary!!
Forty eight years. All easy, mostly uneventful, and never scary or sad.
Ha! I am kidding of course, but the best part of that joke is that somehow they do make it seem easy; and despite all the very real life storms they have weathered together, they are still here all these years later looking fresh and happy and very much in love. Mom and Dad give all married couples, young and old, an encouraging glimpse at not just longevity, but also deep and abiding love and joy. It is quite a thing to behold.
Because, couples can stay together just to say they did, or they can grow together and thrive in new and ever expanding ways. They can face trials side by side and make memories left and right, out of thin air. In a good marriage you can laugh mightily and cry honestly. You can raise a family, build and rebuild and furnish and remodel a home. You might travel less than you deserve to and work harder than you should have to, but eventually the balance is restored. You endure and celebrate and eat well together, week after week, year after year, for nearly five decades. And still have steam in your marital engine.
I truly believe that Love begets Love, in the same way that dreams beget more dreams. Life begets life. God offered us this mechanism for building powerful momentum in our lives. This must be why Mom and Dad are not just here at this milestone but, more importantly, lively and energized at it. Still refreshing the home they started on 41st street so many years ago. Getting their passports to travel the world. Always showing up for their grandkids, in every imaginable way, really in all the ways they showed up for the five of us kids, all of our childhoods and still today. We don’t deserve them.
Our friend Mickey once paid our family perhaps the highest compliment he could. He said, “You come from a long line of effort,” referring to my family and our parents and all the love that flows through us. Though I had never thought of it in quite those words, I agree with him. We might not come from a long line of extreme wealth or pedigree or any other worldly measure, but man. We are totally saturated and fortified by effort. I think that of all the inheritance a family could receive, this must be the best. Effort and the truest forms of Love and acceptance, no mater our mistakes.
Handmade everything. Meals from scratch. Family nights and date nights made up of fun and silliness more than material possessions. Healthy habits that were way ahead of their time. A family business built from the ground up, one that sustained hundreds of young families over the decades. Innumerable traditions that, though often simple, have stood the test of time. We all carry into our own adult lives dozens (maybe hundreds) of yearly traditions that Mom and Dad instilled in us. I love that. I love it so much, to feel my childhood so vividly now, in my daily life, and in the seasonal rhythms.
Mom and Dad, thank you for building such an Empire of Love and Effort for all of us, for our spouses and children and friends. You continue to exemplify humor in the face of stress, tenderness in the presence of grief, steadfast commitment always, and this steady drip of ease and affection no matter how hard you are working. We are all so lucky to have your marriage as our bedrock. Your choice to start a life together forty eight years ago has flourished into a powerful sense of Home for so many people, and we all appreciate it.
My wish for you on this very special anniversary is layered: Lots of romantic meals, just the two of you. Plenty of family game nights. One very big and memorable trip to Spain soon. All of your home projects finished and thrilling you to pieces. And ongoing health and vitality so you can enjoy the fruits of so much labor.
Thank you for taking good care of yourselves and each other, so we can enjoy you all these years and into the future. Thank you for building the life you have, so we can see how it is done. Thank you for being our Mom and Dad, no mater what. Happiest anniversary.