Thursday, August 12, 2010

We Made It!

Today marks my actual 10 Year Anniversary. I know my husband and I celebrated last weekend, so there's no more excitement to come, but 10 years seems like SUCH a long time to be with someone. In a lot of ways I feel like we've beat the odds - considering that the average marriage (last I checked) was about 7 years. Now, I'm not going to sit here and tell you that these last 10 years have been easy or the most perfect 10 years of my life, but it hasn't been. There have been great days and some pretty tough days along the way. If I had this life to do again, I'd still marry him.

My husband and my two big kids came out to the city today for lunch to celebrate our big day. They were so sweet and so happy for us. They had each painted these little ceramic "things" to give to us on our big day. As we sat at lunch and talked and laughed and really enjoyed each other, it reminded me of how lucky we are and how very different my kids' lives are from the one I had growing up.

By the time my mom was my age, she was a divorced mom of five working any job she could that would help bear the expenses. Since I was the oldest of us, I really saw the toll this took on her. Back then, I resented having the responsibility of overseeing my 4 siblings while my mom worked nights in an aluminum warehouse. It is a miracle that the house never burned down and each of us is alive. Now as an official grown-up, I'm thankful I had a chance to sharpen my diapering skills early on. I joke with my sisters that they were the "guinea pigs" who prepared me for my real kids. All joking aside, I still remember thinking to myself that I wasn't as strong as her (my mom) and that I could not do what she was doing. I know this still rings true.

Watching an ugly divorce when your a kid does 2 things to you: 1.) It makes the possibility of a divorce very real. You'll never catch yourself saying "that'll never happen to me" because you know first hand that it very well could and 2.) If you have children, you never want them to have to experience what you did. You will avoid putting them through what you went through at all costs. Unless there is abuse or adultery, you are committed to making your marriage work no matter what. My last recollections of my parents together involved crying kids, flying plates and shattered glass. We haven't hit this point at our house yet and I feel pretty good in saying we never will. I want different memories for my kids.

I think each generation gains a little more perspective from the last. I remember seeing how hard it was for my parents to keep us financially afloat and how much they lost of themselves in trying to do this over the course of their marriage. I don't want that kind of life and we're lucky we've never been forced to.

These last 10 years have been some of the hardest and best times of my life, but I'd do it all over again. Here's hoping for another 10 years!

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