Thursday, August 5, 2010

30 Years

Have you ever noticed how people always seem to want what they don’t have? It must be part of the human condition. I was getting my hair cut the other day and there was this guy. He must have been about 40. He had sort of wavy light brown hair. It reminded me of my dad’s hair. He was complaining to the stylist that he just wanted straight hair. She told him that if she cut it a little shorter that it wouldn’t be wavy. But he didn’t want to wear it short. He actually wanted it longer but he didn’t want the wave. She was patient. I’m sure that a big part of her job is exercising this kind of patience.

That is the kind of business that specializes in catering to people who don’t want what they have and want what they don’t have. People with straight hair want wavy hair, those with curly hair often want it straight. A lot of people don’t like their hair color so they get into coloring it and having to keep up with their given color sneaking back out at the roots. When their hair begins to turn gray, they want to cover it so they can look younger. Ah, but those silver hairs keep showing up down below.

Many people wish they were taller, or shorter, more muscular or thinner. Some people change their eye color with contacts, whiten their teeth, go to tanning beds for that “healthy glow” (can you say melanoma?)

When I was not yet a teenager, I wanted to be old enough to drive. When I was a freshman in high school I wanted to be a senior, then I wanted to be in college, then I wanted to be 21. Many of us cling to 29 like it is the end of our youth. Then 39. Then 49. Now that I’m older I wouldn’t mind being as little younger. 49 actually looks pretty good to me from this perspective.

In a few days it will be our 30th wedding anniversary. 30 years! I can’t really get my head around it. Heidi and I have been through so much together. We met when we were just 18. For me it was pretty close to love at first sight. 30 years. Our wedding day in Bloomington, IN was hot. The air conditioning didn’t work in the little chapel where we were married. It didn’t matter a bit. Our lives stretched endlessly into the distance. We were young. We had adventures ahead and love in our hearts.

30 years. Looking back I do not know where the time went.

Some people, a lot of people, wish for things to be different along the way. I think the divorce rate is around 50% in America. It may be even higher than that. And a lot of people who stay married aren’t very happy. Many of my friends who got married when we did are divorced. Maybe they are happy. I hope so.

There are some things about myself that I wouldn’t mind changing. The gray beard certainly makes me look my age. It would be cool if I didn’t have to wear glasses. I wouldn’t mind losing 10 pounds. But when I look at Heidi I am so glad that she is just the way she is. She is brilliant, and fair and thinks deeply about the world. She is spiritual in the best possible way and cares about social justice. She is selfless and giving and a wonderful, thoughtful, loving mother.

Her bright green eyes may have faded some over all these years. They still shine. She has a little silver running through her hair in the back. She wouldn’t color it. Her freckles have faded just a little, but they still make her unique and so incredibly beautiful. Her smile lines are deeper, but her smile – it still lights up a room. And it lights up my life.

30 years? The best part of those 30 years was that I was loved by Heidi Mills. I am so blessed.


Judy T said...

I think you are both truly blessed.

I should just remember to go get a kleenex before I read your blog. This was so tender and sweet. Tim, I love the way you just open yourself up!! Another lovely tribute to your wife and the life you have had together.

Brent and Kristen said...

What a model of LOVE, true unconditional love. 30 Years, congratulations! What a blessing for the both of you to have one another; Truly have one another. I think you’re right, the divorce rate last time I checked was about 53% and I wonder how much of that is attributed to the “grass is greener” perception? I spoke to a group of people the other day about embracing happiness and how it is a choice. We are blessed with existence and should make the best of it. Each event in our life, good or bad, profound or seemingly insignificant holds value. Embrace each moment. Our scars remind us. Our wounds teach us. What about all of the wonderful things that pass by unnoticed, in the shadow of our focus on our “wish” for something different? There is always good in our life…we just need to open our eyes, and embrace it, as you have.

Gloria (The Mamafamilias) said...

What a great, perfect post!

You are so right, not many are satisfied with the blessings they already have. Unfortunately (may I get on my soapbox here?), I believe most people tend to judge their happiness factor by what Hollywood tells them happiness is. So sad.

Congratulations on 30 happy years!

(We must be living parallel lives - my husband and I have a 30th anniversary coming up in September).

What a kind, thoughtful husband you are to post such loving words about your wife.

P.S. Sorry I haven't left comments lately. I've been slack. I especially enjoyed your post about Hawaii. Your words painted a beautiful picture (loved the photos as well). thanks!

Chris Hass said...

Hey, congrats on 30. I admire both of you so much!

I remember that I was truly amazed when Tricia and I hit five years and doubly so when 10 came and went. Now we're running up on 15 and it, too, blows me away. Of course, I always knew we were meant for one another and would be together always. But, still,these most recent numbers are crazy to me because they remind me of my parents and their anniversaries when I was a kid. I don't feel old enough to be looking up at a 15 year anniversary. But, unlike the folks you mentioned in your post, I don't want to be younger. I'm just surprised to find that I'm actually getting older.

M-Cat said...

Wanted to pop over and say thanks for your comment on my blog.
Congrats on your 30th! In today's world, that's like a world record!! : )

Happy Friday!

Batya בַּתְיָה said...

I read your blog and thought of your thirty years of marriage compared to my one...what a blessing for the two of you to have something so sweet for such a long time. Congradulations! You described your wonderful wife so beautifully, it made me teary eyed and proud to know her. I met with Heidi and Dori for lunch the other day and it was a sweet reunion. They told me about your blog and the pictures from Hawaii. I was mesmerized by the sea turtle. We are planning a study of sea turtles this year in my first grade class. I'm glad to have found your blog. It's always nice to read inspiring and thoughtful words...tell Heidi that Kendra says hello:)