My Thanksgiving

These are always hard to write…I always want to get them exactly right, but…this topic…man.

Today, I’ve been married twenty years.

I’ve known Karen since she was likely around seven years old. She was that gawky little girl sitting on the couch at my best friend’s place. She hung out with my best friend’s younger sister. I went to school with her older sister, Kim. Kim and I didn’t really talk. Hell, Kim didn’t really talk. And I was the shy skinny kid that had very few friends, so not too many people talked to me. But I digress.

I was always aware of Karen, she was around. There was a point when we attended the same college at the same time and it was obvious to both of us there was an attraction there. But she was going out with a long-term boyfriend. And me? Well, I was bumbling my way through a series of girls. No stud, me, just some not-so-serious short term relationships. I don’t think I went out with any girl much over a month before I kicked them to the curb or they smartened up and did that with me.

Anyway, there was a point that Karen was on the outs with the boyfriend. They’d sort of broken up. We went out with a group of friends and, as these things happen, I ended up driving her home. We sat talking out front of her house. Then, she said, “What would you do if I kissed you?”

I looked back at her and (yes, you’re gonna think me an idiot) said, “I wouldn’t let you.”

“Why not?”

“Because you’ve still got stuff to work out with your boyfriend.” Then I basically told her to go figure shit out with him. If they broke up, well, she knew I was around. So, she did.

And got back with him.

Yeah, so…THAT kinda backfired.

Anyway, flash forward a few years. I’d just ended a relationship and, at that point, wasn’t looking to hook up with anyone. I was quite comfortable being on my own for a while. Women were too much of a pain, I reasoned.

I ran into Karen with that same friend she used to sit on the couch and giggle with. I ended up getting her number and asked her out. I later found out she had been “sort of” seeing another guy, but it wasn’t going anywhere…but this time she dumped him first.

Anyway, we started dating…and I guess we never stopped. That was 1987. We married in 1991, had our daughter in 1993, and our son in 1996. Now one’s getting ready for university next Sept, and the other’s in high school…and suddenly, I’ve been married to the same woman for twenty years.

Where did the time go? We’ve had a lot of fun, we’ve had some rough times, and we’ve had some very rough times. I’m sure every marriage of any notable length does. But I still can’t believe it’s been twenty years.

Where does the time go? In my head, the birth of my kids was a few months ago. I got married a couple of years back. I mean, God, I’m only about 22 in my head, how can I be in this 48-year-old body?

Does this sound like I’m bitching? I’m not. I still (most days) feel like I’m 22. I’ve got a good life that most would die for…so no, you won’t hear any bitching from me. Life’s good. Can’t complain.

But man! …Twenty years? Seriously? Then I go to the amazing Don Henley, a man much more eloquent that I could ever be to sum it all up…

Here in this fragmented world, I still believe
In learning how to give love, and how to receive it
And I would not be among those who abuse this privilege
Sometimes you get the best light from a burning bridge
And I don’t mind saying that I still love it all
I wallowed in the springtime
Now I’m welcoming the fall

For every moment of joy
Every hour of fear
For every winding road that brought me here
For every breath, for every day of living
This is my Thanksgiving

For everyone who helped me start
And for everything that broke my heart
For every breath, for every day of living
This is my Thanksgiving


3 thoughts on “My Thanksgiving

  1. Pingback: 21 | Left to Write

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