Forty years ago today, two very impractical and disorganized people got married in a little chapel in Vassalboro, Maine. I’m sure many in attendance wondered if the marriage would last four years, never mind forty. I’m referring to Clif and me, of course, and wonder of wonders, the marriage has lasted.
Why have we stayed together so long when many marriages fail? If I had the answer to that, I’d write a bestseller and make tons of money. Alas, I don’t have a definitive answer.
There are some glimmers, though. Along with being impractical and disorganized—alas, we are still both that way—we are also creative and persistent. At first glance, those two traits might seem like a consolation prize, but in our marriage, at least, they count for a lot. We both value the creative life and the sizzle it brings to all that we do. Clif’s creativity falls more to the visual and graphics, where mine is words and story. It’s a great combination that we have employed many times over these forty years.
We both love opening up our home to friends and family, to gather around the table to eat and talk. In our younger days, we had large gatherings, and the little house in the big woods was often filled with people.
Now that we are, ahem, more mature, and have slowed down, our gatherings are smaller and much simpler. But as Clif noted today, it’s better to get together here rather than at a restaurant. There are no time pressures, and we can talk as long as we want. In the winter, we enjoy our good-sized dining room, and in the summer our patio.
Politically, we are in perfect accord. Again, this might not sound like much, but to us it’s of vital importance. We were left-leaning liberals when we met, and forty years later, we are still that way.
We both love movies, books, plays, lectures, and art. Biking. The outdoors. Our children and our friends. Going and out and having a good time. Staying in and having a good time.
And maybe those above-mentioned things are enough, that we have such a strong common core that it compensates for being impractical and disorganized.
All I know is this: The cherry on the marriage sundae is that after forty years of being together, Clif and I are still good friends. For that, we are oh so grateful.
Here’s a collage Clif put together of our forty years of marriage.