#OTR50 Day 13: Anniversaries

I am an admitted workaholic. I’ve assuredly made it worse for myself as most of my career has been working almost exclusively for mission driven nonprofits. The end result being that I not only care about my work. . . I care about the work itself.

Many years and several jobs ago. Early on in my career, I had a job that made me physically ill because it took so much of me. Work literally made me nauseous. I worked a split shift where I would work the afternoon, go home for dinner, and then return to work in the late evening in order to supervise all the end of day needs and lock up.

One night I came back to the office and the rest of the office leadership was still there working late. The person, I semi-reported to was in the building and was nasty to me. It put me over the edge. I was so stressed out that when this individual left my office, I pulled out the garbage can underneath my desk and vomitted. Right there in my office. A few days later I gave notice.

Why am I bringing this up tonight?

At the time, my wife and I were still in our early 20s. We were young, struggling, just making rent, etc. There was no back-up plan. No other job the fall back on. Groceries to buy and rent due soon.

I bring this up because tonight is our anniversary. We actually have two major anniversaries. Tonight’s is the five-year one. Regardless, we’ve actually been together for 25 years.

People sometimes ask us how. They are surprised by 25 years. I think the answers are numerous and varied.

That said, I’ll tell you tonight two of the most important things that need to be intertwined — truly love and support each other for who you and your life partner are as full three dimensional beings.

I quit my job way back when in the early years of our relationship because my mental health was the most important thing.

More importantly, I was supported, I was loved. I was assured that we would figure it out together. That was the foundation upon which we already relied. That’s what got us through and passed the hurdle of unemployment.

Thankfully, months later, I found a job that provided more opportunity, a better schedule, and brought us closer to family. I was able to build back up my career. To through myself back into it with a bit of a healthier perspective.

There are many ups and downs in life. There is sickness and health. Happiness and sadness.

Today, we celebrated a milestone (not meterstone) anniversary because we have lived half our lives fully supporting and loving each other on this bizarre journey we call life.

Neither of us are the same people who met each other back in 1993. Both of us have been through our own trials and tribulations as well as our own hurdles and victories as a couple.

What did I say back on post nine? Plot is not enough. Commitment alone isn’t enough. We are three dimensional characters that grow and change over the course of our story. A healthy lasting relationship allows and supports us to the opportunity to be fully ourselves.

352 more days to go.

#OTR50

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