Marriage and Time

I’m glad to see that viewers continue to come to my blog and read my words even in my absence. Thank you all for you continued ‘VISITORSHIP’.

I have been spending the last two months in Portland OR helping my son remodel his new house from a 1950’s track type home to a spacious, “This is more of what I wanted,” vaulted ceiling, recycled timber counters and tile that, with a cast iron tub, bay windows and all that stuff, that will cause the visitors to his new home go “wow” when they walk in the front door (which also needed to be upgraded of course). And, as usual this all has to be done on a limited budget and time crunch that would cause any contractor to walk off the job before it began…any contractor accept his father of course. To top this all off, last weekend, in the middle of the remodel, he got married and preceded to take off for a honeymoon. Thankfully it will be short and his wife’s mother is taking care of their 8-month old baby.

I have been living in their spare bedroom/office for the time I have been here and have been enjoying helping take care of the baby and enduring the middle of the night cries for diaper changes, bad dreams, teething and the general “I don’t want to be awake alone,” cries from Ingrid. Of course she is the most beautiful and smartest baby in the whole world and of course my wife is envious that I get to be involved in the early stages of her development, but I’m worn out. All this is meant for the young.

Now I may be young at heart but really that is not enough. So after the wedding I sent my wife back south to Medford wishing we could have had a little more non- hectic alone time to get reacquainted and simply enjoy a breakfast alone together reading and watching the sun rise one more time, and am spending some me time taking pictures and writing. As time grows shorter in life each sunrise brings on the feeling of the urgency to enjoy the simple things in life, time with loved ones, each moment of personal time, and those special moments with my wife. Of course I may change my mind in a year since my wife has decided to retire from the University and once again take up the challenge of changing me. Of course she cannot leave a job unfinished my resistance to change has worked in my favor and has kept her trying and me resisting for almost forty years.

My son requested that I make a “short” speech at the wedding dinner…no I mean that he asked me at the wedding dinner giving me no time to prepare any remarks what so ever and then asked me to keep it below two minutes. I began to appreciate the years I spent in college earning a communication degree and getting over the universal fear of pubic speaking. And that I had taken a 400 level course in story telling… “Think on your feet and embellish,” was the class mantra.

Of course I was also admonished by my, “I’ll change you if it kills YOU,” wife that I was to not tell any embarrassing stories. And my daughter knowing me as well as she does just gave me “the look” of pre-disapproval, knowing that something she would not approve of would spill uncontrollably from my mouth.

Undaunted by all the pre-speech limitations and preconceived thoughts of disaster I put the speech writing portion of my brain into the highest gear I could find and wrote, memorized and performed the following flawlessly:

Lucas, the first secret to a long and happy marriage is to first choose the right woman to spend your life with, as I did with your mother. And look we have been married for almost forth years.

The second secret is to realize that you actually did not the do the choosing but were the one that was chosen.

Third never, never go to bed angry, and never, never let your lovely bride ever, ever go to bed angry. Always, always turn to her before you nod off to sleep, cup her face in the palms of your hands and softly say the well known phrase of the long time married man, “I’m sorry. I was wrong.”

Bur seriously…(yes I can go there)…

May your wealth be measured by your happiness,

 May your happiness measured by your love,

And may your love be beyond measure.

(Clink your imaginary champagne glass here and toast the bride and groom.)

Now I returned to my seat to find both my wife and daughter wearing a look of astonishment…well under two minutes…a tasteful joke…and words of wisdom undoubtedly stolen from some sentimental wedding card found in the Hallmark store while I was patiently waiting for one of them to purchase one thing or another.

My wife was lost for words when she asked where the quote came from and asked me to repeat them so she could write them down. I was doubly proud when she was again astonished when I told her the words were mine and when my daughter said that I did a great job.

Me? I was not too astonished at my ability to come up with a speech on such short notice; and one that was approved of by both my wife and daughter…after all I have  a BS (stress the meaning of BS) in journalism and have been under the pressure or the master, the woman who choose me as a project forty years ago, to change my ways for.

But please keep my secret…otherwise she might begin to expect I have changed my ways, has completed her mission and may decide that it is time to move on to someone more challenging, not so decrepit and much, much younger.

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