As I was driving to my friend’s house to pick her up for a coffee date, I reminded myself out loud, “Don’t stay too long, she is still in pain and a long coffee date might not be beneficial”. Well, something along those lines.
Basically, Don’t talk too much!
….famous last words.
You see, she is recovering slowly from two broken arms. Yes, you read that correctly, TWO. I was anxious to see her, I just didn’t want to tucker her out.
Side note: we are fortunate to have a brand new car. Saturday, before our coffee date, I practiced driving, parking and changing lanes etc. I wanted to make sure I could do a good job of taking my friend out for coffee.
Thanks to Mr. Right, you KNOW the gas tank was full, the car spit spot clean, sparkling inside and out. You already guessed he made sure I had extra spending loot and he told me to drive safe.
Their home overlooks a huge park where they hold summer festivities. This time it was a ginormous car show with oodles of people everywhere and not a parking spot in sight.
My friend and her husband were out on their sidewalk waiting for me to pull over.
Anyway, we excitedly said hello, she got in and situated. Her husband helped her and made sure she was comfortable. I passed him some fresh eggs and we were set to go. He told me to drive safe. He closed the passenger door and tapped the roof two times.
Off we went to the coffee shop. Dang, I love that girl. We have been friends for 44 years. No, that is not a misprint. Yes, we have been friends that long. She has always been a beautiful blond who defies the traditional blond jokes. There is no joke about how intelligent she is. That girl is wicked smart with a side of humor. Oh yeah, I am lucky to have her in my tribe.
We enjoyed coffee and shared a treat between talking and talking and talking. At one time, I had a faint, fleeting thought, “keep it short this time”. Then I asked how her daughter was and she mentioned they had set the date for their wedding…………….well, settle in folks. I hadn’t seen a smile on my friends’ face like that in ages!
Happily, down the wedding rabbit hole, we went.
Okay, it really was time to wrap it up and get her home.
I was sad to hug goodbye. Like we always do, we promised each other we would do it again soon.
I phoned Mr. Right to tell him I was headed home.
As I drove home, like a good ending to a Sherlock Holmes movie, our coffee date replayed in my mind…. going over details, reliving the goodness.
In my mind, I heard it again.
Earlier when I heard that, it didn’t register.
That was her husband’s rough, huge, tough, capable hand on the top of our car. He’s probably done that over a thousand times in his life. He was a marine, in Vietnam. He was a firefighter. He was a paramedic. He has put so many people in helicopters, ambulances, and aid cars, that he most likely can’t remember the number of times.
I would venture to guess, he doesn’t even think about it.
The other day, another friend mentioned that when she sees married couples who seem to be happy and thriving in their marriage she asks them, “What’s your secret?”
PSSSSSSST! I know one of the secrets.
You know that moment in a wedding ceremony when you promise to love, honor and cherish?
He cherishes her.
The word cherish is a verb and it means to protect and care for (someone) lovingly.
When he taps the door or top of the car, he is letting the driver know that the passenger is safe, protected and ready to be transported. ……….Take care of this woman because I cherish her and now I am entrusting that you will protect her while she is with you.
That man cherishes his wife.
You can see it. You can feel it.
During this time of her having two broken wings, it is a little more noticeable to the rest of us. He irons her clothes, cooks and cleans and wait for it……he washes her hair. Swoon, is there anything more sensual, personal and wonderful than when your man washes your hair? SWEET JUNIE MOON!
If you would like an excellent, well-written book on the topic, I highly recommend the book, “Cherish”. The author is a childhood friend, Gary Thomas. https://www.amazon.com/Cherish-Word-Changes-Everything-Marriage/dp/1531834256
So, to answer the question “what is the secret to a thriving, loving, happy marriage”? I am pretty sure one of the answers is to cherish your spouse.
How do I know?
I witness it through watching my friend and her husband.
I witness it through my brother in law and sister in law.
I live a life of feeling cherished every single day and I cherish that man I call Mr. Right.
In this together, friends,