My husband and I celebrated a significant anniversary this summer, and it seemed a bit surreal. We’ve accumulated a lot of memories and been through a lot raising four children together. Did it feel like we needed to celebrate that? After all, we still love each other and we’re still alive, so of course, we’ve been married twenty-five years! Although many will consider all the romantic moments in such a relationship, I’m not sure I can. My husband and I are practical people, and romance isn’t something we cultivate. But he always tells me love is a verb, so I have reflected on the verbing over the many years.
What stands out, because we are practical people after all, are the times he saved my life. The first time, I was carrying my toddler and was about to cross a street in Sante Fe, where we were vacationing. I looked both ways and started to cross. My husband’s hand shot out and pulled me back before I was run over. It seems that there was a car hidden from my view by my toddler’s chunky body. Oh. Thank you! He doesn’t even remember this one; it was just a natural reaction.
And then there was the time in a parking lot outside a restaurant. We were leaving, and the parking lot was quiet. I headed to our car, and suddenly a jacked-up truck that had been idling revved its engine and pulled out of its lane, and headed straight for me. I’m pretty short, and I don’t think the driver even saw me in the way. My husband was a few steps behind me, and he reached out and slammed the side of the truck with his fist. The truck stopped, and I safely made it to my car. Thank you! My husband remembers this one but doesn’t think he did anything hero-worthy.
And the last time, I was eating at a family dinner at our house when I began to choke on a piece of meat. A little bit of air could get past the food, but I couldn’t get enough air, and the bite wasn’t moving. My husband quietly walked over, did the Heimlich maneuver, and I was fine. I have since joked that if I ever have to do the same for him, I’ll either have to stand on a chair behind him, or he’ll have to kneel on the floor before me because I could never get the right movements otherwise. He’s a foot taller than me, and it would be a bit of a challenge – but I would do whatever it took.
So, there you have it. No romance to speak of, but there is clearly love.
Here’s a toast to another 25 years!