39 Years

You think you know
on the day you take wedding vows;
You think you know
how the rest of your life will go;
If we knew then what we know now,
I think we’d make them anyhow.
You think you know.

And sometimes you really do.

Thirty-nine years ago today, I married my soul mate. That doesn’t mean we agree on everything; far from it. We are probably opposites in as many ways as we are alike. What it means to me is that from the first time we met, we knew we were meant to be together; there was that feeling you see in movies or read about in books, where the pieces of the puzzle just seem to fall together effortlessly, where there’s an almost automatic friendship and feeling of rightness. Our lives, even in utero, seemed to run along the same paths, from the maternity ward to the multiple moves our families made, we were always on parallel paths heading in the same direction, until one day, with a little help from our mothers, those paths intersected. From that first meeting, we were one.

When you get married, you believe you’ll be together forever. You think you know what in sickness and in health and for better or worse really mean. You think of till death do us part as some vague thing in the far off future. Divorce rates being what they are, we know that for better or worse isn’t as simple as it sounds and marriage is no guarantee of forever together. In sickness and health often means a lot worse than dealing with the common cold; it may find you having to do things for your spouse that you never dreamed of when you said those words at the altar. The older you get, the less vague and far off that till death do us part thing becomes, and you don’t even want to contemplate what life would be like without the person who’s shared it all with you. Through all the complaints and trials that life throws in your way, you know it’s all worthwhile because you’ve got each other. Together, joys are doubled and troubles are halved. Together you can get through anything.

Thirty-nine years is a lifetime. Thirty-nine years is the blink of an eye. I hope we’ll have another 39 years together. We’ll only be 100 by then, so it’s not impossible. Happy Anniversary, John. All my love, for all my life.


Before the moment of my birth
I was meant to love you.
Before managed time and calendars
ticking off the years,
you willed me to your side.
Spirits entwined on ethereal planes,
encompassing lives,
past, present, and future;
Einstein’s theory proved fact,
existing everywhere and always–

It matters not
for wisps in time,
barriers separate us;
in the end
they will be bridged.
Angry words
and little deaths
are fleeting.
We are

~Elise Skidmore
October 23, 2015

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  1. I have often believed our destinies are set for us, it is already written how things will go for us, you have said quite beautifully what many others feel. Marriage is a commitment for god or for bad, it is a pledge to stand by each others side. Happy Anniversary..

    1. Thanks, Suz.
      Commitment is the name of the game. If you’re going to stay committed you have to be flexible and keep a sense of humor. Selective memory also helps; remember the good and quickly forget the bad stuff.

  2. A great tribute to real love vice the Hollywood version. We’re only a couple years behind you two (ok, so I’m a slow study), but have lived through some of that “for better or worse” stuff . It is definitely easier together, plus you get to build your treasure trove of “sea stories.” Love to you and John and the “kids.”
    Joyce and Al

    1. Thanks, Joyce & Al!
      I’m so glad you liked this anniversary post. I know you two have been through a great deal together over the years, so I’m not surprised that you “get it”. I’m pretty sure any couple who’s been together for a long time can relate–that was my hope, anyway. 🙂