Today is my parents’ 30th Wedding Anniversary. The Pearl Anniversary. What an achievement. I hate the way the word “achievement” sounds, but it really is an achievement. It’s something that I aspire to and hope that one day I can celebrate the same.
Sometimes I wonder what it takes to be in a partnership that survives for so long. I sometimes feel like men and women were not made to cohabitate, let alone do so peacefully for 30 years!
That doesn’t mean that it comes without fights and tears, moments of hopelessness and downright agitation at having to put in so much work that a lot of the time becomes a norm, an expectation, or goes completely unnoticed.
But it also comes with so much laughter and fulfillment, a house becomes a home filled with love. Three daughters grew from little girls to independent (ha, not really hey mum and dad?) women. And when I look at what I’d want out of my own marriage, I wouldn’t want it any different (boyfriend, please be aware of this before you put a ring on it!)
I asked my mum and dad what they feel is the one thing needed to make a marriage work. Mum said: Compromise. Give and Take. Dad said: Communication. Also, your partner is your best friend before they are your lover.
I know for a fact that the most important thing that both of them said, are sometimes the things that they have to work the hardest at. Sometimes, communication and compromise is really difficult. But the fact that, even though they don’t always get it right, they still value the importance of it to create a marriage that actually works.
Too often nowadays I see marriages falling apart before even reaching the five-year mark. I can’t judge, I haven’t been there (ahem, wedding bells, boyfriend?) but I wonder why it works for our parents but not for our generation? Are we getting married for the wrong reasons? Are we saying “I do” without knowing what it takes? Or do we just not know the recipe for success? Is it that easy to break a promise that you make to someone on your wedding day to love them until the end of time?
Sometimes love isn’t enough. But I feel that it’s the basis to grow off of. If you don’t love someone, like really really love them, how would it be possible to even dream of thirty happy (sometimes not so happy, but for the most part, content, and genuinely happy) years together?
The fact that some people just can’t learn to love each other no matter what until death-do-you-part, and yet my parents can honestly say they love each other today, more so than they did on the day they said “I do” thirty years ago, is a testament. Dare I say it: achievement.