Wednesday, August 24, 2011

The Best Example Ever

Today is a themed post for the Feminist Fashion Bloggers group.  Our theme for the day is dating and relationships.  It’s a happy coincidence that today is also my parents’ 48th wedding anniversary.  They are such an amazing example of a loving, caring, and solid relationship.  My dad passed away February 15, 2009.  I miss him every day.  I’m sure how I feel is nothing compared to how my Mom feels. 

Always laughing
My parents had a wonderful relationship.  My mom always said they were best friends.  My dad said that he couldn’t remember life without my mom. In fact they have known each other since childhood.  They began dating their senior year in high school.  As of December of 2008 (just two short months before my dad died), they had been together as a couple for 50 years.  It’s a lifelong love story and the strength of their relationship is something I try to emulate every day in my own relationship.  I asked them both, at different times, what the secret was to staying together and loving each other for all those years. Here is what they said:

Mom’s Advice
  • Make sure you like spending time with the person you choose.  Passion and hot sex only get you so far.  You can’t live your whole life in bed.
  •  Relationships aren’t always perfect.  They take hard work and you have to work on them daily.
  • Don’t try to change someone.
  • Pick your battles.  Not every argument is important.  Sometimes you just have to let the other person win.
  • Find someone who makes you laugh.
  • Be partners.  Working together gets you through the tough times.
Dad’s Advice
  • Love is important but like is more important.  When my Dad asked my grandfather for permission to marry my mom, my dad said that he loved her and wanted to marry her. My grandfather said, “You love her but do you like her? Liking her will keep you together."
  • Any qualities or habits that bug you early on will irritate you a million times more as the years go by.  Make sure they are things you can live with.
  • Make time for each other no matter how busy you get. 
  • Pick someone who has the same values as you.
  • A person who is smart will challenge you and make you want to be better.
  • Find someone you can have fun with.

Before a College Dance

It’s such great advice from two people who know how to make a great relationship work and last.  They had such admiration and respect for each other.  My mom is a strong independent woman and my dad loved those qualities in her.  They both had great careers and were successful professionally. They enjoyed their life with each other. Together they raised two strong independent women (my sister and I).   
In the spirit of fun and fashion, here are a few pictures of Mom and Dad at their fashionable best.

I’m spending the day with my Mom.  I know it’s not an easy day for her.  She’ll be missing my dad so much today and I don’t want her to be alone. Hopefully, we can have a good day and smile about their happy times.


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