It was 55 plus years ago that I was a senior in high school taking a yearlong typing class. I sat in the back of the classroom with a good buddy of mine and we had a complete view of the whole classroom. A junior girl who I silently had a crush on sat in the front row. I guess I paid more attention to her than I did my typing exercises. She was a popular person in her class, and I had a hard time putting two words together to make a simple sentence. I did have the lead in the senior play that year, although reading someone else’s lines and coming up with your own was surely a struggle for this boy.

Each of us needed to walk a few more miles before my closest childhood friend would try on several different occasions to get us together. She was in nursing school and I was serving four years in the military, both in and out of the country, so timing was our nemesis. She would be the maid of honor in my friend’s wedding and I the best man, but the right time had yet to arrive.

We continued our way and she still did not know that I was crazy about her. She graduated from nursing school and I was close to getting discharged when my dear friend set us up on a get-together, not a date, just a, ”Could he tag along?” She consented and it was a Labor Day “get together” at the Catskill Game Farm, followed up by a movie.

I believe it was then that she found out that I had a keen interest in her. A month and some odd days later we were engaged and then married in less than a year.

We are now at the 50-year mile mark. We have two wonderful sons, a daughter-in-law, a grandson, and a lifetime of wonderful family experiences. We have been extremely blessed with so many wonderful friendships along the way. Life and your marriage are a journey. There are bumps, bangs, scrapes, and sometimes bruises. You may truly question all of it at times and you may need help to get yourself back on track. We are no exception, I can only say if you need help, please get it. We used professional dance lessons to get ourselves back on track. When you dance, you must always smile and work together to get those dance steps down and when you mess up, there is no finger-pointing. You start the music over until you get it right. If something is wrong, say so. Do not put your head in the sand and pretend it will get better. It will not. Love and dancing are great partners. Love is a work in progress, and you must be present every step of the way.

So, here we are at the 50-year mark and I could not be happier or more in love. The other morning, I woke before she did and I was staring over at her, her eyes closed, and I said to myself, “She is one beautiful woman. I am so glad she is my wife!”

I can hear your question right now, “Did you tell her?” You better believe I did. Let no words of love go unspoken!

VIAby Rod Michael
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