Today is my parents' 35th wedding anniversary.
That's not a sentence that very many people have an opportunity to type.
I was thinking about my parents today, and realized that I don't have the ability to conceptualize loving the same person for 35 years. If I'm being honest, I'll tell you that it's something I hope is in my future, but as for now, the phrase "married for 35 years" is as incomprehensible as if it were in another language.
I know that it has (probably) never been easy. I know that it hasn't always even looked like they would make it to this point, but they did. And I know that watching my parents' relationship has informed what I am looking for in a relationship as well.
It's too easy to say that I look to my parents' relationship "warts and all", because I know I have never seen the highest highs or lowest lows. I've lived through the extreme sides of the middle. And I know I'm biased, but I do think my parents have either had more extreme high and lows, or at least more of them than your typical couple.
My parents are far from perfect. But they love each other like crazy, and I've been able to see that love wears all kinds of different faces, and rarely looks as lovely as we would like.
Someday, hopefully, I'll be celebrating an anniversary, and I'll carry those lessons into the relationship with me. But if I don't, watching my parents has taught me about living with other people, whether the relationship lives safely on middle ground or trusts enough to reach dangerously on the edge.
Happy anniversary, Mom and Dad. I know it's a weird little tribute, but it is a tribute, in its way.