My parents 55th wedding anniversary.
Mom was lamenting that they didn't make 55 years by 43 days. I told her, "You get credit for time served. You made it. "
I was very worried about Mom today, but she stayed busy sewing, and I came home and cooked her a favorite meal- Coconut Shrimp. About 3/4 through the dinner, I said to Mom- "So, tell me about your wedding day..."
And she did. My parents eloped. Mom was in college at West Virginia University. Dad was still in the Navy, and a recruiter working out of Philadelphia. They met in the Summer of 1962,or 1963- while Mom was working as a hostess in Atlantic City, NJ.
Dad told me , once he saw her, he just knew. He said she would change her hairstyle everyday. He was transfixed on her. The courted for a year, by telephone, having a conversation on Sundays.
Then they decided to elope. April 24, 1964 was the day, that they met at a cafe in Morgantown, West Virginia. Mom was all decked out in a pale green suit, and wore her hair with bangs- for the first time ever. Mom had some wedding flowers. Dad ordered the Largest breakfast ever, and proceeded to take a full 30 minutes to eat it. Mom says she was soooo nervous. Mom was 21 years old, and Dad was 33. Finally breakfast is over, and they get in the car, and drive to Maryland.
They stopped in a little town, and went to see the Clerk. This was the days when you could get a license and be married the same day. So, they did. Mom said the courthouse was a lovely brick building, and they had lots of weddings there. She also said the ceremony was really nice. Not the normal, but an actual little ceremony.
After they were married, they drove to Cincinnati, Ohio to supper club, where Leslie Uggams was performing. They had a great meal, and Dad had prearranged a wedding cake to come to the table, and all the servers sang. After, they went to the showroom, and watched Leslie sing.
Mom went back to WVU, and Dad went back to work in Philly, and living in Atlantic City. A month later , when school was over for the year, Dad came and picked up Mom, and moved her to NJ.
I asked how Mom told her father she had married, and she said she wrote him a note. ( Can you believe it? ) and she moved to Atlantic City, NJ in with Dad and my Grandfather- Dad's father.
All was well. Everyone criticized their age difference- 12 years, my Mother's age- 21, and they all said it would never last.
What they didn't know is... my Father was a romantic. and he always introduced Mom as his Bride, or My Patsy. Dad put Mom first ,always, and even though they had little in common, they had each other.
I once asked Dad- What's the secret to a long marriage? He said a few things:
1. You are either a team. or you are not- there is no in between.
2. Always say " I Love You" every day
3. " I give your Mother 30 minutes of my attention every day - whether she wants it or not."
4. My personal favorite- " Don't sweat the small stuff".
5. Being right is not as important as making your partner happy.
I told Mom- you outlasted all of them.
Happy 55th Anniversary Mom and Dad! I love you to the moon and back.