Thursday, February 11, 2016

Happy 64th Anniversary

My Grandma told the best stories. I can remember climbing in her big bed, pulling the heavy comforter over me, and listening to her bedtime stories as I tried to fight sleep. I'd inevitably talk her into one more story... and we'd occasionally burst into giggles that could not be contained.

My Grandpa's basement smelled of wood chippings. His woodshop downstairs shaped me many wooden microphones and stands, and they'd allow me to perform endless concerts upstairs.  They'd laugh and applaud and make me feel like a star.

There was no better cornbread than my Papaw's dipped in milk.  Sweet on the first bite, and then that milk dripping down your chin as you spooned it into your mouth. I could eat it hot out of the oven or cold from a plate.

Winter evenings meant gathering around a Scrabble board or playing Rummy.  Grandma never could sit still, but she'd always make sure you had something to drink if you needed it.

Brandon and I would run upstairs and hide... or spy on make-believe criminals as we searched for clues to solve the latest murders.

How things change... but still stay the same.

My Grandma still offers you something to drink. My Grandpa still applauds our achievements.

And I'm continuously amazed at how blessed I am to come from a legacy of love.

In today's society, 64 years together is an anomaly. Sometimes, 6 years is unbelievable.

And I get why. Marriage is hard, y'all.  I love Wallace Bates, but sometimes I can't stand him, and I'm pretty sure he feels the same.

But at the end of the day, I cling to the hope that the marriages I've watched as I've grown up offer.

I hope that someday I can tell my grandbabies the story of how we met...

gazing into the past, thinking of prom dresses and staying with her sister in town so that they could meet at a dance, and how Supt. Turner told her Board Member Daddy how pretty those Anderson girls had looked... when he didn't know they had attended.

Or recounting the story of our marriage...

as she remembers a February day 64 years ago when they drove "all the way to Salyersville" and were married.

Or of early times in our marriage when the house seemed too small...

because they lived in Michigan and Breathitt Co. boys kept coming to work so they'd pile them up all over the house and Grandma would feed them and do their laundry.

Three kids put through college.

Work, day in, day out.

One goes to bed early. One would sit up all night long, watching news channels on mute with the closed caption going across the screen.

In those 64 years, more afghans than can be counted have been made. Enough hot pepper plants have been grown in the basement... the tree outside has been covered with water for an ice garden so many times that he was featured in the Lexington Herald Leader. Trick-or-treaters from three or four generations have knocked on the front door. We've sat in the swing and I've climbed trees and waded in the creek and made mudpies and picked the buds from the money tree and chased butterflies and picked up a few rocks on the Hollybush...

And through it all, I've known love and have been loved...

Because two people fell in love all those years ago.

Thank You, Lord, for these blessings. May I always treasure how special they are.

Happy Anniversary, Mamaw and Papaw!!!

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