Anniversary Gift

This week my husband and I marked our 18th wedding anniversary. The hubbster gave me a thoughtful and well-written card (he’s a fabulous writer), and I gave him my annual poem written for the occasion and enclosed in a less thoughtful and well-written card. But, hey, he got a poem, so I’m off the hook for the card, right?

My poem this year, no surprise, arose out of my research on the ancestors. Turns out that in Swedish, the word for married is GIFT! (Not at all pronounced as it is in English, but when reading the word on my geneology, it tripped me up each time.) Anyway, the poem is about the ancestors who were gift in the past and the choices they made to be with one another, to make a life together, and in some cases to leave their life in search of a better future in a new land. Thank God they were so brave and strong!

So yesterday I gave my partner his poem even though Tuesday was actually our anniversary. But he is taking classes (in addition to working full time) and had to finish up final exams and all that this week, so we postponed our official anniversary card exchange, etc., until Saturday. On Tuesday, though, we did manage to watch some of our wedding video with our ten-year-old son, who had never seen it.

Wow! First of all, we were SOOOO young! I mean, compared to now. We got married when we had both just turned 26, which is young, sort of, though not really that young to get married, I think. But looking at us! Oh, my, we were so goofy.

Then my attention was grabbed by grandma and grandpa, who were all over that video. My heart skipped a beat when I first saw them. I had no idea that I had them on tape. What a joy to see them once more! Grandpa was so funny. He just didn’t understand what the video camera was. Every time my step-sister pointed it at him, he’d say, “Take it. Take it, Michelle!!” He was waiting for the flash of a still camera. They just couldn’t get across to him that they were filming moving pictures. πŸ™‚ All the while there was Grandma, serene as ever, gracious and loving, never once cracking a smile at her husband’s expense. They were married over fifty years.

And last night, after all of this thinking about the anniversary, the wedding, my grandmother, I dreamt one of those beautiful and rare dreams when Grandma came to visit me in my sleep. She and I were walking around together before my wedding. I was marveling how well she was managing to walk. Of course, she used to walk all the time (duh!), but she had many years with a walker and then was bed-ridden in the final years of her very long life. Those later years had taken over, it seemed, in my memory of her. But here she was walking with me, arm in arm, around the hall where I was married. We were laughing and talking, and I was so happy. As happy as I was that day.

And I was very happy that day. I recall with crystal clarity that I felt complete assurance that I was doing exactly the right thing in marrying this man. I KNEW that it was right. I still think that today. Not that everything is always rosy. But I knew going in that life (and marriage) aren’t like that. No, I knew, though, that here was a guy to be tied to for life. A guy I could trust and enjoy and who would work beside me to build a good life together.

A lovely gift.

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5 Responses

  1. Belated happy anniversary.

    After my dad died I went through home video after home video looking for him. I only found a ten second clip and was upset with myself for not thinking to video more of him. I’ve got tons of baby videos of my kids. Who thinks to video the older folks?

    I’ve been working on this major photo scanning project. I have over ten thousand photos already scanned and I think I’m about half way through. That’s where I found the treasures. Lots of pics of my dad at all ages of his life. Fourteen years he’s been gone and I didn’t know I had all these photos of him. I also got my mom to give me some of what she’s got so I could scan them in. It’s been a fun project.

  2. Your photos make me imagine a short film of your dad. I have a mac so I’ve got iMovie, which is really easy to use. have you thought of putting together a video of stills?

    In any case, it’s great that you have the pictures, but a bummer there isn’t more film footage. It’s true that I wish I had done some videotaping, too. I have audio, at least, of my grandmother….

  3. Yes I do have a Mac and never thought about putting together a montage in iMovie. Glad you told me about it, I didn’t know I could do that.

    I had an uncle who had the same exact voice and South Texas accent as my dad. I used to call him a lot after my dad died, just to hear that voice. He’s gone now too, though.

  4. Kitty, I know what you mean about the voice. I like calling my grandma’s sister to hear that familiar sound.

    Putting together a montage in imovie is really easy. You just import the pictures and then select and drag to arrange in the order you want. You can insert screens with writing on them, too. And there’s some standard music or you can add your own. If you wanna get fancy, you can even do a voice over, but that entails having a way to record digitally….which you may have, but editing sound means you need a good program for that, too.

    I hope to put together a montage of our Scandinavia people and places for my relatives for Christmas. We’ll see if I pull it off. Doesn’t take a lot of time…but it does take SOME time. πŸ™‚

  5. Thanks for the info. I’ll check into that. I recently go MactheRipper off the net to rip DVDs and am looking for something to burn them. Might have to go with Popcorn.
    That Scandanavian project sounds fun.

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