Today is our anniversary! Gary and I have been married 42 years. I don’t even know how that’s possible, but somehow it is.
There we stood in my beautiful home church in West Virginia, young and in love, pledging our vows to each other.
Now we’re old, although I really don’t feel like it most days…and we’re still in love. Our love is deeper and more settled than those early years, rooted in all the ups and downs of life that we have weathered together.
On my mind today are those familiar vows that are so often spoken at weddings. We promised to stay true to each other “in sickness and in health.”
Never ever even once did I think of the sickness and health part as being anyone other than Gary or me. Having a child with lifelong health issues was not anywhere on our radar when we spoke those words to each other and before God.
Today our plans were simple. We would eat lunch out together while Aaron was at his day group. Time alone while Aaron was happily occupied was a perfect plan.
Just before 8:00 this morning I heard Aaron having a seizure. This is not unexpected. I knew at that moment that our anniversary day plans would be changed.
Later, when Aaron was awake and hungry, here was our view for a late breakfast on our patio.
And it’s OK, truly. Gary and I are very used to these sorts of changed plans in our life. And I am not trying in any way to garner sympathy.
What has been on my mind this morning is that when Gary and I spoke those vows about sickness, we in reality were referring to our life with Aaron as much as anything – though we had no idea of our future.
Aaron’s life of special needs has been very trying at times. Yet through it all, Gary has stood right by my side. He has never wavered due to the stress of it all. The demands of our many years in the military, his own career decisions, our moves, so many doctors, hospital stays…well, I could go on for a long time about how Aaron’s life has impacted Gary’s in particular.
But Gary never bailed on me or Aaron. He has led and sacrificed and given of himself to both me and Aaron over and over and over.
So our vows, as I ponder them this morning, have taken on an even sweeter meaning to me.
Staying true in our son’s sickness and health is indeed the greatest gift of love that I have been given by my husband…my husband of 42 years!!
Happy Anniversary, Gary! I love you so much.
We’ll do a rain check on our lunch. ♥️♥️