You’re still the one

Sue and Roger with Bubbe. October 20, 1991
Sue and Roger with Bubbe. October 20, 1991

I am my beloved’s and my beloved is mine.   Song of Solomon 6:3

An open letter to my husband on our anniversary.

Dear Roger,

24 years!  On this our anniversary day, I’m looking back on some of my favorite memories.

  • I remember meeting you at a contra dance at a church in Worcester. My two friends ditched me at the last minute, so I decided to go by myself. I was so glad when you asked me to dance; the song was (appropriately enough) “Swing my Susie.” During a lemonade break in the church kitchen, you mentioned that you would need to sit out the next dance because you didn’t know how to waltz. I knew you were someone special when you were willing to practice waltzing amidst the oversized pots and pans, laughing as we avoided stacks of dishes and random piles of vases.  My journal entry from that night reads, “Met a cute guy with a nice smile and dark, sparkling eyes.”
  • I admired your courage when you told me on our second date (cross-country skiing in the sleet and rain, remember?) that you were Jewish. You assumed it would be a deal-breaker for me, this minister you had just met. When you told me that a message of compassion and caring was important to you but that you didn’t care if the messenger was Jesus, Moses, or Buddha, I knew we could make this work.
  • And five weeks later, we were engaged.

We got married on a Sunday. Very early that morning you came to the parsonage to wake me up.  We walked to the church together just as the sun was rising, shining on the autumn leaves. The empty sanctuary was filled with a golden light as we said our wedding vows to each other.  We considered ourselves married at that moment – which was good, because when we gathered that afternoon with our family and friends, I couldn’t remember my vows at all!

One of your promises was to make me laugh every day – and you have been true to your word.

I celebrate some of our “firsts”

  • Our first restaurant together: Friendly’s, for a cup of coffee after the contra dance.
  • Our first date: Thai food, followed by the play “Driving Miss Daisy”
  • Our first fight: When you ate the chocolate chips I had set aside for baking.
  • Our first holiday together: Easter (which you didn’t even celebrate!), getting ready for my whole family to come for Sunday dinner after worship.
  • Our first hot air balloon ride: over the Berkshires, on our honeymoon.

During our first December together, we bought a menorah so we could celebrate Hanukah. At Christmas a few weeks later you gave me a quote by Katharine Hepburn: “Love has nothing to do with what you are expecting to get – only with what you are expecting to vie – which is everything. What you will receive in return varies. But it really has no connection with what you give. You give because you love and cannot help giving. If you are very lucky, you may be loved back.”  We’ve both been very lucky.

In February 1993 I went on a week-long silent retreat.  I told you that we could have no contact with each other; the only reason you could call was if you heard any news about our much-anticipated adoption.  You called with joy in your voice,“Our son was born!” So our parenting adventure began; I am blessed to have such a good partner who is also an excellent father.

Mostly I don’t have the words to describe how grateful I am for our love.  That’s why I like the quote by Brian Andreas that hangs in our bedroom: “I read once that the ancient Egyptians had fifty words for sand and the Eskimos had one hundred words for snow. I wish I had a thousand words for love, but all that comes to mind is the way you move against me while you sleep – and there are no words for that.”

24 years!  And hoping for at least 24 more.

You’re still the one. And we’re still having fun.

Happy Anniversary, sweetie.

And here’s our song.

6 thoughts on “You’re still the one

  1. Nancy Gale

    Love it! Such a positive note that we CAN “Live happily ever after.” Those are the words hanging over my sink. MY Roger is also “still the one” after 52 (almost 53) years.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Jill

    Happy Anniversary! So glad you found each other and are still having fun – you two really know how to be happily married! Celebrate well. Much love.


  3. Happy Anniversary. What a lovely tribute. As cartoonist Lynn Johnston noted many years ago, “they say there’s nothing like young love, but old love is better. Here’s to getting older together with the ones we love.”


  4. Carol Crump Bryner

    This is a lovely story Sue. Made me a little teary. I’m so enjoying getting to know you better through these writings. It’s comforting to read the words of a truly good person. Thanks for sharing your thoughts and life with us.


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