True love and I just attended our third wedding of the year. I think that will be all for this summer of love — but I’m open. And Monday, September 1st, we celebrate our 28th anniversary. Naturally, all of this got me thinking about the powers of collaboration, hope, and love.
Ken’s parents, who flew in from Santa Barbara, had some challenges hosting the traditional rehearsal supper. We’d only given them a month’s warning and they were not familiar with the Washington, D.C. area. In the days before internet searches the simplest solution was having the meal at the Waring house. Wally, Ken’s dad, came into the kitchen and asked, What can I do to help? I put him to work chopping onions. Later I learned that Wally did not, as a rule, ever collaborate on domestic projects; he had only asked to be polite. But that afternoon he chopped onions until he wept. Ken scrubbed potatoes, I made a huge salad. We sat down to a delicious meal because of collaboration.
The night before my wedding, I had to share my bed with my sister because out-of-town guests were in every other bed in my parents’ house. After a restless night, I seriously wondered, How do people do this?! How do I sleep with another person in my bed for the rest of my life? And not only bed, how do I have another person in my bathroom, kitchen, car, my head, and my heart? It took time. And like every romance, “The course of true love never did run smooth.” But I am happy to report that I learned to sleep through his snoring and share the sheets as well as the sorrows, the laughter, the challenges, the fears, the moves, the books, the dreams, the money, the responsibility and all the joy. Because of hope.
Just last week our firstborn went back to school for the last time (on our watch). She is now a 17th grader. Instead of trips to Target for a backpack and new jeans, I made trips to L.A. to help her settle into her apartment. She embodies so much of our love while being her own distinctive self.
Looking at her, I know that love is the child of patience and trust fed a steady diet of humor, listening (or fresh blueberries!) and learning. Always learning. Always going back to school. Always curious. Always a beginner. Open. Interested in what the other thinks and feels. Which is why Ken and I are still together and about to celebrate another anniversary. It also helps that we really really like each other, and that as we go back to school together again and again we bring along devotion, have hope, and make time for naps, touching, kissing, and
very good sex collaboration.
Dear readers, may your life be filled with collaboration, hope and love. Dear summer newlyweds, in 28 years I hope you know the powers of collaboration, hope, and love for yourselves.