Tuesday, December 18


The grandparents are celebrating their 50th Golden Anniversary this weekend. That's fifty years of togetherness and the same person to come home to. A milestone; it's hard to stand a single person for fifty years straight. It's even harder when you're married.

Gramma still gives Granddad rubdowns every night, and he still refuses to drive her anywhere. She doesn't mind this, because she loves to walk. He gardens and loves to have structures made; she makes banana cakes and loves her job. He's a lawyer; she teaches.

For as long as I've known them both, they've always done their own thing, but put up a united front. They make a point of going to mass together. Gramma explained this to me a long time ago. They each have a set portion of the myriad bills that come with marriage, so there's no fighting and no problems. They both know what they have to do, and they get it done.

They are two of the most independent and driven people I have ever gotten the chance to know - I think that's the glue that binds them together. They were hip before the word 'hip' was even coined. Being the head of the family Granddad had to make the hard decisions. Gramma was never the stay-at-home happy housewife; I think she'd have gone nuts if she had to stay at home with the vacuum cleaner and waited for the husband to bring home the bacon. She didn't neglect the housewife bit, though. And he had double duty as the dad/mom when she went to the States to get an advanced degree. He pulled it off - all the kids finished college. Futuristic. I don't really know how they did it, they just did.

Fifty years, five kids, eight grandkids and one great-grandchild later, they're celebrating the Golden Anniversary that so few manage to reach in the age of divorces and annulments. But these two very special people managed it.

I've never been a big one for the institution of marriage. It's daunting and it always has the power to unnerve me. The idea of total togetherness in foreverness and mortgages.

Poring through the wedding pictures my Gramma locked away in a vault, all the pictures of the children and the life they've shared for the past fifty years is a poignant experience.

Maybe it's all worth it after all. This is what people dream of; a wonderful lifetime with the one you love. Holding hands until the sun sets. Going your own way in the day, but always getting back together to share the night. I'm glad these two have that.