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Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Relationships


Last year I was asked to share some of the secrets aka tips for a long and happy marriage since I have been happily married for almost 34 years.    In honor of Valentine's Day (total day devoted to your Love), I decided to share what I wrote last year:

  When I was asked this, I thought and thought about a genuine super tip that would help everyone achieve a long lasting and  successful marriage but that led me to what is successful and what makes one happy.   These definitions would be different for everyone so I calmed down and decided to tell you what works for us and hopefully you can gleam some tips from that. 

 My sweet Fellow and I first met when we were 16 and 17 years old,  he was Cowboying on weekends and I was waiting tables and he walked into the small cafe where I was working in West Texas. (sounds like a country song, huh?  LOL)    He says he fell totally and completely in love at first sight.  I just knew my heart skipped a beat every time he walked in,  in fact it still does today especially when I am somewhere and I unexpectedly see him :).   We survived the bumps and bruises of growing up and the attraction was always there and the "friendship" grew.  We were married in 1980 by a Justice of the Peace in a small ceremony (so big weddings are not always the answer, not saying that small ones are either:).  Within a few years we both became Law Enforcement Officers, he at the Federal level and I as a County Deputy Sheriff and we were living 800 miles from our family and friends and we had two small children.  We both worked shift work and sometimes due to unforeseen incidents, we worked longer than just 8 hours, so sometimes we didn't know when the other would arrive home.   
Law Enforcement is a very stressful career and the divorce levels for them are double the general population but somehow our marriage grew stronger.  I have decided that in times of high stress and challenges, we pulled together and got closer. We sat down and decided on a game plan together to overcome difficult times and didn't blame the other.  We both knew the other was carrying more stress than necessary and didn't wish to add to it, so instead we tried to relieve some of it.  Marriage is never 50/50, you have to be prepared to give 100% so you can carry each other.  
 The less we saw of each other,  sometimes (most of the time) we worked opposite shifts and had different days off so one of us was always home with the kids, the more we treasured the moments together:)   We made sure that we had dates, there was always a night or two a month that we could sneak away and go dancing!!  Something about dancing together (yes the old two step, holding your partner tight kind of dancing) cemented us.  Dancing while holding each other makes you (pardon the pun) get into step with each other.  
 I have to always be on his side and he has to always be on my side, so there is no room for yours and mine but it is always ours because what affects me and what I can't overcome will affect him and vice versa :)  
Yes, we do have time apart "me time" to go to lunch with friends or for him to go on hunting trips with the boys or a retired guys breakfast.  "Girls night out" or "Boys night out" just never worked for us.  If we went out without each other, we missed the other and maybe that was a very good thing, partying too often and too hard without the other just breeds resentment.  
 Anyway we have survived raising three great kids (yes, we were fortunate to have another child during the chaos), having two separate law enforcement careers and now we are in the middle of building our retirement home on our ranch in Texas. 
 Now it is "My Turn for us"!!   
We have had responsibility and have been in the work force ever since we were very very young and now we are so lucky to be able to spend every day together.    We love being together and he is never boring and I hope he can say the same for me.    I am fortunate  that I  fell in love with not only my best friend but someone I would be friends with even if I wasn't in love with him.  I have fun with him and can think of nowhere else I would rather be than with him and he tells me the same (smart man, LOL).  What ever sport or game he gets involved with, he always includes me.  He outfits my "rig" the same as his.  When he bought a 4 wheeler (ATV or Quad) he bought two and taught me how to ride.  When he started shooting archery, I received a bow and all the trimmings.  I have learned to fish, hunt, build barns and fences.  He helps me in my projects and not only supports but gets involved with my recipes, topics and pictures for my blog etc. 
 So on this Valentine's Day, make a list of all the great qualities about each other, what first attracted you to your special Fellow or Gal, what he/she does to make you happy and all the traits they have that you respect.  Yes, you have to respect each other:)   And don't ever make that other side of the list, you know the cons, those are not worth listing. I don't wish for him to write down my cons so I don't do that to him.  I don't nag him mainly because he doesn't nag me.  I NEVER speak ill of him to my girlfriends or anyone else. That would be all out Treason!!   Of course we disagree, we are both strong willed opinionated individuals but that doesn't mean I am wrong or he is wrong.  

I am more in love with him now than ever before, our children roll their eyes about us but secretly they are very proud and glad their parents have a very strong loving relationship.   Maybe two words that make a lasting relationship are "Respect" and Acceptance".     I genuinely  respect him and I try to be that person that he respects:)   I have accepted him just the way he is, (that's what attracted me to him in the first place), not that he picks up his dirty socks off the floor, LOL.  Yeah have you ever heard "Oh he is so awesome, he picks up his dirty socks off the floor"  yeah right!! Not ever!!  
 No you hear, "He is a good man and he treats me right":) 
 And thats what is important:)  


My heart still skips a beat over this guy:))



Riding Quads in the Desert:)






Happy Valentine's Day!!






27 comments:

  1. What a great post. Thank you.

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  2. Congratulations! and Happy Valentines's Day ! Our story is similar to yours, Mr. Right sat behind me in study hall when we were 15. We went together for 7 years until he got his degree and married a week later. Last September we celebrated our 40th anniversary. I must say your tips are right on. We were apart a lot also during the family rearing years. I was fortunate to be able to be a SAHM but he travelled for his job. The good weeks he was gone M-F. Other times international travel kept him away several weeks at a time. There were also many evenings and weekends devoted to entertaining customers.
    Like almost all couples we have had some rough, bumpy times. Somehow (I give him all the credit) we made it through & now are happier together than ever. Eventually I really understood how lucky I am. He may not be Mr. Perfect but her certainly is Mr. Right for me.

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  3. This is a wonderful post. I've been married 33 years too and you nailed it. Thanks Evelyn for sharing with us at Wake Up Wednesday Linky Party.
    Angel

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  4. This is so sweet!


    I have only been married for not quite 10 and when we married I was given 6 months top to stay married. We met online in an art community chat room which by the way is no longer there. With his brother's help, he flew me up to Washington State on February 14, 2004 and we were wed in June 26, 2004.

    So he truly is my knight in shining armor wearing the camera which he never used to take my picture like he wanted brandishing a dozen chocolate roses because my first words to him were and I quote, "Shut up and kiss me", lol.
    You see my hubby is very special to me because he is a high functioning Autistic with ADHD with Social Anxiety. But no matter how God made him he is a big gentle Teddy bear and I love him heart and soul..

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  5. my husband and I are high school sweethearts too :D this is such a lovely post, thank you for sharing!

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  6. Beautiful! I love how you don't even want to bother with the negative traits! Why even dwell on that? Thank you for sharing your love story.

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  7. How awesome to read your love story! I look forward to many more decades of doing life with my husband. "Boys Night Out" and "Girls Night Out" don't really work for us either--we're busy and have different schedules so when we're free at the same time we're excited to be together again!

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  8. What a beautiful story!!! My husband and I have been together for 13 years and we will celebrate our 10th wedding anniversary this summer. He is definitely my best friend!

    Cindy from Superheroes and Teacups

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  9. This is such a beautiful love story; it's nice to see a couple last these days. I loved reading this, and hope that you guys had an excellant valentine's day!

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  10. Such a sweet love story, Evelyn! How very fortunate you both are to have that kind of enduring love and friendship. Thanks so much for sharing your story with us! Hope your Valentine's Day was a great one!
    Blessings,
    Nici

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  11. Aww you have a lovely story! I can't help but be inspired. I've only been married for 3 years and I agree that respect and acceptance are key to a long lasting relationship. And there's no point of writing the cons of the other person. I've learned that we have to focus on the brighter side of things all the time. I recently gave my husband a gift where I wrote 100 reasons why I love him. Thanks for sharing this wonderful story. I'm visiting from #LOBS, great weekend to you!

    REAlity Bites

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  12. What an amazing story, and I do love the how you met part of it.
    Longevity in marriage really fascinates me. I hope to be the same.

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  13. a wonderful post celebrating you love. Wishing you a continued lifetime of happiness. Thank you for helping to make the Thursday Favorite Things Blog hop so much fun. Big Hugs ♥

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  14. What a sweet story. I love hearing about long lasting marriages in which love is still an integral part of the marriage. I have a wonderful marriage, too, and feel very blessed, as I'm sure you do.

    ~A Slice of Homeschool Pie visiting from 100 Blog Challenge

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  15. What a lovely story! I'm glad I dropped by to read it. Have a great week, Evelyn :)

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  16. What a beautiful glimpse of your story - your love shines through in every word you write. Wishing you many more years with the man who still makes your heart skip a beat ;) Blessings!

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  17. What a beautiful love story. Ours just like yours is based on respect and acceptance. We have been together for 31 years and I would do it all over again in a heartbeat. My husband is also my best friend and we can't wait to start having "my turn for us". Visiting from BYB challenge.

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  18. I just love your story but especially the part "Marriage is never 50/50, you have to be prepared to give 100% so you can carry each other." People are so blinding in thinking that marriage can solve problems or that the other person must make the first move or improvement and that often results in divorce. You have proven that when you fight for each other and with each other you can have a lastly marriage. We are celebrating 15 years in July!

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  19. I really enjoyed reading about how you've made your relationship last successfully. You have what eludes so many...thanks for sharing your story!

    -Cristyl @ www.MyCHillThoughts.com

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  20. You have no idea how touching this is! Me and hubby are on second shift with no one, and I mean no one to help us with anything. It's been burdensome and difficult, we see each other maybe an hour a day, a few hours on the weekend and we haven't been out together in over 6 years. I am a SAHM and he is in healthcare which is very demanding of him, I have kept his shift so that I can see him at least a little. It makes me so happy to read this, that it is possible to get through even the most trying of lifestyles and make it out well. We both feel the same way about each other as you and your hubby, in fact there are many similarities. We've gotten through 9 years so far and I hope for a million more! Thank you for this lovely post and putting a little more hope into my life.

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  21. Oh Evelyn! That is such a lovely story. I'm so happy for you. You are definitely a rare breed these days and you both should be very proud of yourselves.

    Much love, Anne xx

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  22. Evelyn, I simply adore the two of you. I can "feel" your love and devotion through your writing. What especially caught my eye was when you said "Marriage is never 50/50, you have to be prepared to give 100% so you can carry each other." That is very true. I am so happy to have "met" you and read this!! #TBT100

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  23. Evelyn,
    I loved getting to know you and Lee better in reading this. I know exactly what you mean. I think your exactly right about respect and acceptance and liking the person your going to spend the rest of your life with. Sweet story.
    Hugs my friend,
    Wanda Ann @ Memories by the Mile

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  24. This is so sweet. I am so happy for you. I love the idea to make a list of things we love about our spouse.

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  25. Great post...it was featured from last week's Project Stash!

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  26. What a beautiful love story! It's so great that you still love and respect each other so much now about 34 years and that you both become involved in the other's project and activities. Yes, your story does sound like a country song, but the love songs are the best! And so is your story of love and perseverance. Wishing you both the best!

    Thanks so much for sharing on Turn It Up Tuesday! We love having you! :)

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Thank you so much for your sweet comments:)))