30 Years and Counting!

30 Years and Counting!

Today, May 9, my husband and I celebrate 30 years of marriage. Honestly, when I walked down the aisle of Immaculate Conception Church in New York City all those years ago, I wondered what our chances were of staying the course. On the heels of the societal upheavals of the ’60s and ’70s, marriage in the 1980s—even now—often seemed like a shaky proposition.

Me, Tom, and the kids

But so far, so good; yet it won’t be too much of a big deal in our house. When I told my daughter, Carolyn, the other day, she said, “Are you sure? Has it really been 5 years since your 25th anniversary?” I’ll be surprised if my son, Glenn, remembers; he’s a self-professed “no cards” kind of guy—even though I’ve tried to explain that sending a card is not about him but about the other person. (You just can’t teach those kinds of things.)

We’ve been trying to figure out a way to celebrate ourselves, Tom and I, but it’s just not working out. We thought about going out to dinner yesterday, Sunday, but there’s an 8 p.m. liturgy at our parish for college kids, and as music director for the parish, Tom had to be there. We could go out tonight, but there’s a parish council meeting that I’m reluctant to miss because tonight we choose two new council members for next year— an important consideration.

So yes, other obligations are getting in the way of our celebration. Does it really matter? We’ll do a date night later in the month, in-between Glenn’s college graduation next week and my godson’s confirmation and the business trip to New York for a few days—and all the other stuff that makes up a life. And frankly, I prefer it that way; big celebrations make me nervous. You end up being the center of attention, and what fun is that?

In the meantime, I gave my husband a happy anniversary kiss this morning and we had a lovely breakfast together. The coffee was good and strong, and the eggs just right. Maybe later we’ll be a little crazy and go out for lunch together. In the meantime, I hope and pray that the next 30 years of our lives together will be as interesting and challenging and delightful and blessed as these first 30 have been.

BTW, I’m reading a great book that came out a month or so ago—Ray Guarendi’s Marriage: Small Steps, Big Rewards. I figured that since we were nearing a milestone anniversary, it might be time to take stock and pick up a few tips. And I was right; this book is a gem no matter where you are in your relationship.

photo credit: photostock


About the Author

Mary Carol Kendzia is a product development director for Franciscan Media Books. She lives in Rhode Island, where she occasionally dips her toes into the Atlantic and reflects on the mysteries of life, among other things.
  • Joanna

    Sounds just like my family! My husband and I have been married for twenty-five years and there was never a dull moment! It was not always easy but reading your article has made me realize how lucky I am really! Your children sound just as absent-mindedly loving as my own!

    • Mckendzia

      Thanks, Joanna! I love your phrase, “absent-mindley loving.” Perfect!

  • Helen

    Congrats to you. I hope and pray your upcoming years will be passed in so so much pleasure and happiness. Your son and daughter is really good. And good wishes to your sweet husband. Thank you for your post.

  • Cheryl

    Congratulations to you and Tom! Having known you both for 23 of those years, I appreciate your insights about marriage and living together to make it work with children, career, trials and successes. Here’s to the next milestone, what ever year or decade we choose to celebrate.

  • http://twitter.com/joellengolberg JoEllen Golberg

    Wow…good for you guys. You both have been a constant source of inspiration for many of us, not only as a married couple, but as just “good folks”. We who know you, love you both.

  • http://twitter.com/joellengolberg JoEllen Golberg

    Congrats to you and Tom, Mary…. great post. You both have always been a great inspiration to so many of us, on many levels. We who know you, love you! I miss you both!

  • Gwen Costello

    I do NOT believe it has been five years since your 25th. Congratulations to your both and God’s continued blessing on you, Tom, and the “kids.” Love, Gwen

    • Mckendzia

      Thanks, Gwen! Good to hear from you.

  • Whaarsgaard

    Congratulations to you both.  Mary, Tom has been to our Parish and influenced our Music for liturgy since we met in Pittsburgh some years ago.  A pleasure to know that a two career household can sustain a marriage.  May God continue to bless you both. Wally Haarsgaard Immaculate Heart of Mary, High Point, NC

    • Mckendzia

      Thanks, Wally! We hope to get back to High Point and visit sometime.

  • Helen

    You are really lucky. There are a fewer family who can lead a very happy life together as well as stay together. And you are the one very exceptional in here to live and lead your life happily. That is only for your sweet husband and your good children.

  • Helen

    congratulation for your thirty years. I think you are a happy man with your husband, son, and daughter. I pray  for you. Thanks for the post.