Gratitude Day #30
You know that I'm saving the best for last.
Today I am grateful beyond words for Mr. Kerry. And, the reason I save him for last is because tomorrow is our 41st wedding anniversary.
Yay for us -- 41 years!!!
I didn't much like Kerry when we first met and began dating. He was alright; but I was just sure that each date would be our last. There had to be something better.
My parents had moved to Kensington, MD to begin working in the Washington DC Temple in 1976. Kerry had begun working there when it was first built, and had seen it under construction during his mission in the area 1971-1973.
In early 1977 I was invited to come and work there, too. I moved there April 14.
I began working at the Temple April 15.
I met Kerry April 16.
There was a full working cafeteria in the basement, and I hadn't had a chance to hem up my long white dress. I walked past his table, and fell flat on my face.
He found where I lived after about two weeks, and asked me out. That date was okay, but nothing to swoon over. Then, he asked again...and again...and again...
One night in June, we were at my parents' watching "Rich Man Poor Man", and he just kept hanging around. We both had to be at work early the next morning, and he needed to go home. I sat there holding one eye open, letting the other eye sleep for awhile. Then, I would switch.
I finally got up and went into the bathroom. When I came back, he was kneeling by the couch praying. When he finished, I walked into the room.
He hemmed and hawed.
Then, he asked me to be his wife.
I had to hold my face together, and said I would have to think about it.
A week went by. Finally, my dad asked me if I had given him an answer yet. No.
He asked how long I was going to make him wait. I don't know.
He said, "Peggy, you need to think long and hard about this. He's a fine boy. And, how many people do you think would be willing to live with YOU?"
I thought about it. I weighed the pros and cons. I decided on yes, and it felt right.
But, I didn't love him.
The planning began, and as we got closer to the date of December 1, I realized that he really was a good man, and had come from a really good family. And, I needed to realize that perhaps my parents had seen something in him that I hadn't seen.
We married on a drizzly December day, and it was the best decision I have ever made in my life -- the right person at the right time in the right place.
Kerry is the best person I have ever met and known in my entire life. We are smitten with each other -- even after 41 years. When we've been apart even for a little while, it's like we've been apart for months.
When I was younger, I didn't have enough sense to:
1. Look for a man who would change diapers right along beside me.
2. Be up past midnight helping me finish up cleaning and canning a bushel of pears or apricots.
3. Continually bring his family together for family prayer, and pack the family up to bring us to church; sitting with us and singing at the top of his lungs.
4. Look for a man who loved God more than he loved me.
Kerry is the type of person who is good when no one is looking; pure integrity.
Recently, he was sitting beside me watching "The Wizard of Oz" twice in the same night from beginning to end. We all know what happens at the end of that movie when Dorothy is proclaiming, "There's no place like home. There's no place like home."
Kerry's tears are falling down his face and falling on to his shirt. He's also laughing at the same time.
That night, a FB friend chided me for posting that. Trust me...Kerry's name is perfectly safe with me. It's a tender part of his persona that we giggle at. And, he doesn't mind he knows it.
You will never, ever hear me say anything bad about him. I weary of both men and women who gripe and complain about their spouse. Sorry...it doesn't make them look bad. It makes you look like you didn't have enough sense to choose someone better. If Kerry and I have something to discuss and deal with, there are only two people who will know about it. Us.
I hear his prayers as he petitions the Lord for the safety and protection of his children, and for us.
I hear him pour out his gratitude in prayer for the blessings we both have been given.
And, I rejoice when he picks me up from the airport and embraces me in his big wingspan.
This man is a good, good man...the best person that has ever been in my life. If I had not married him, it would have been the single biggest mistake of my life.
I will always be grateful that the Lord allowed our paths to cross...a young man from CA who moved to UT, and met a girl from OH in DC. It was meant to happen.
And, I know that.
So, this finishes off another month of gratitude posts for Miss Peggy, though I could post one every single day the rest of my life and never be finished.