What I Have Learned From My Parent's Marriage
Relationships

What I Have Learned From My Parent's Marriage

A letter to my parents who are high school sweethearts with 23 years of military and marriage.

7
Alexandra Collier

Dear Mom and Dad,

Twenty-three years ago today, you were wed to each other at 19 years old. You were two years younger than I am today, vowing to dedicate the rest of your lives to each other. A little over a year later, that life would include mine.

This is my favorite story to tell. You met a few years prior at a high school dance. You didn't even go to the same school. Mom was grounded for the only time in her life and Meme let her off the hook early to let her go to this dance with a family member that went to Dad's school. When Mom walked in, looking beautiful as always, Dad's chin literally dropped to his chest (and she saw it!) If that isn't fate, I don't know what is. That is where it all began. The rest is history. Your history; our history.

I have learned so much from each of you individually, but I argue that my most valuable life lessons have come from you both. Having parents who are high school sweethearts (that totally still act like it to this day, I must add) has taught me a lot about life and love.

You taught me the value of commitment.

Dad joined the Army shortly after you began dating, and by default, so did you, Mom. You have both stuck out 20+ years of the military. From basic training, to several deployments, to warrant officer school — it never really ends, does it? You married each other knowing that the Army would have to come first. You knew that your time together would be limited. This meant writing letters, lots of phone calls and a die-hard commitment to your marriage. This meant making every moment count that you did have together and being grateful for the little things. When I was three and Dad was deployed, I can remember his letters and phone calls being the best thing that could ever happen to us. We waited by the phone, we sent photos and we made the few weeks we had with him that year really count. That was hard for Mom, but she didn't give up. She stayed strong for me and she taught me about you. She never let me forget who you were. Dad was in a scary place, but he stayed strong for us and still made us feel like the most important girls in the world, even from an entire world away. I know it was hard, and it is still hard. I know it has had a toll on both of you, but you remained loyal to each other, our family and the military. You both showed me that these were big commitments and once made, there is no other option than to give them your 110 percent.

You taught me that marriage is often flawed and difficult. You never stop working on it, ever, and that's okay.

For a long time, I had a very cookie-cutter idea in my head on how marriage should be. A lot of that was due to being one of the few kids with parents who were still married growing up. You were quite possibly the only parents who were still happy and in love. This set a really high standard for me and gave me the idea that I should only ever be with one person. I thought I needed to marry my high school sweetheart and have this "perfect" relationship. Over the past few years, I have realized how unrealistic that is, and while you have something incredibly rare and special, you don't have that "perfect" relationship I had created in my head. You don't have perfect and easy. I see that never once have you stopped taking care of each other. You didn't just get married and stop putting in work. I see you both, every day, put in effort to spend time together and make each other smile. I see you communicate during the hard times instead of walking away and giving up. I see you forgive. I see you give respect and acceptance at each other's best and worst. I see you putting your marriage as a priority. I see you putting your love as a priority.

You taught me to never take loved ones for granted.

You have showed me the value of family and have blessed me with a loving, stable, secure life. You have provided me with a family I can count on and trust. For these reasons, I have a better relationship with you both than most people at my age have, or really ever have, with their parents. Again, it is not perfect, but it is always safe, always important and always present. I value the time I have with you and everyone else that I love. I make sure to remain humble and count my blessings every single day, always knowing that I have enough to be grateful for for an entire lifetime, because I am surrounded by the people that I am; because I have both of you.

Thank you. I love you both endlessly.

Love,

Your Daughter

7/10/1993. Happy Anniversary, Mom and Dad.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
Health and Wellness

This Survey Shows How Quarantine And Drinking Relate, And I Can't Say I'm Surprised

"5 o'clock somewhere" is more of a guideline now than ever.

As it stands, and my friends and I are finally 21. We're extremely excited to be able to go out to bars and "get lit" as the kids say, but due to the pandemic, all of our plans have been put on hold. We'd rather wait and go when it's safe than risk spreading the infection and hurting our loved ones. So, we've all been quarantining apart, getting on the occasional wine zoom call. This made me wonder if anyone else our age were doing the same thing.

Then, I discovered this survey: We Surveyed Millennials And Gen Z About Their Quarantine Drinking Habits — Cheers. Here are 3 things that I discovered through the survey results.

Keep Reading... Show less
Lifestyle

5 Easy Summer Mocktail Recipes You Can Make With Items You Probably Already Have On-Hand

Keep these drinks in mind next time you're visiting your local farmer's market — you might want to grab some extra mint and limes.

With Summer 2020 in full swing comes the addition of many fresh fruits and vegetables to brighten up your dinner plate, but also your glass! Farmers markets are my personal favorite place to look for produce that is in season to make fun mocktails with.

Keep Reading... Show less
Lifestyle

5 Ways To Celebrate The 4th of July — Without Fireworks Or Social Gatherings

We created a list of things to do since social distancing may create a dent in our typical, planned traditions.

With the Fourth of July on Saturday, the usual tradition of popping fireworks, grilling out, and being surrounded by family has been modified due to the pandemic. Whether you're a loner or surrounded by family, there will most likely be some changes to your celebrations.

For weeks on social media, people across the country have been complaining that they have been subjected to fireworks going off at all times of the night into the early morning. This has sparked concern and questions about why this is happening and how are people even obtaining the fireworks.

Keep Reading... Show less
Lifestyle

Carb And Cheese Lovers, Unite — These Are The Best Mac And Cheese Recipes On The Internet

Whether you need to get through the current pandemic or want to spice up your Fourth of July celebrations, these mac and cheese recipes will do just that.

https://www.instagram.com/p/BxIKdnMHcGr/

My favorite food is mac and cheese, and it always has been. All it requires is noodles and cheese — it's so simple to make. Although it's my favorite, it can also get kind of mundane because it's such a simple recipe. This, of course, has led to many people all over the world experimenting with the American staple.

With our lives currently being turned upside down due to the pandemic, a lot of people are seeking comfort. These are scary times, and in order to make it day-to-day, we need to have our favorite foods as a standby. These recipes can also be used during your celebration of the Fourth of July.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

17 Things To Make You Feel GOOD This Week

Because some purchases are just necessary.

Y'all, we're struggling. You don't even have to tell me, I know. What a mess we're all in, right? This year is not going how we planned and the world has turned into one giant struggle bus. I guess you could be super philosophical about everything happening for a reason, but sometimes life is just hard.

There are plenty of ways to bring yourself out of whatever rut you're in. You could go for a run, have a snack, or read a book. Or, if you're really looking for an adrenaline rush, go shopping. This is obviously not going to solve the world's problems with one swift click of the "checkout" button, but hey, it may just give you the little boost you need today.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

I Wore A Butt Mask Every Day For A Month, And It's Officially Essential In My Daily Self-Love Routine Now

Thirty days later, my booty's as smooth as a baby's.

- Blissfully unaware that butt-care beyond squats was even something I should be considering in my self-care routine, I tried one of Bawdy Beauty's butt masks for the first time a month ago.

- I've never really given my butt a second though till I took a look at improvements that could be made with the mask — if one of the hydrating, firming, detoxifying, or brightening masks in the kit I received could either smooth out cellulite or tone my skin a bit more, I wasn't going to complain.

- Each Bawdy Beauty sheet mask comes in an individually-packaged sheet, soaked with a serum I massaged into my skin after removing said sheet. The clay butt mask comes in a convenient stick format I simply draw on to my skin and leave to set for about 10 minutes before hopping into the shower.

- I set a goal of committing myself to butt-care every day for one month. Between the regular use of sheet masks, clay masks, and their CBD Butt Balm in between, I didn't have many expectations.

- I thought the whole concept may just be a gimmick, but my butt has never looked so toned in my life, and the cellulite I had is almost completely gone. I wear one every single day when I get the chance.

I'm incredibly skeptical when it comes to marketing ploys and gimmicks in the beauty world. I'll be the first cynic to try out the latest serum on the market every influencer is raving about just to negate every grandiose claim it makes.

Keep Reading... Show less

Friends, you don't have to be quarantined to use a personal massager, you know? Because, sure, quarantine made for a lot of extra quality time with yourself, but no matter what phase of the reopening process you're in, it's normal and actually healthy to take care of your sexual needs on your own.

Keep Reading... Show less
Entertainment

5 Books I Didn't Realize Are About Gay Women

If you read primarily LGBTQ fiction, then this list might help to expand your TBR list.

Photo by Ketut Subiyanto from Pexels

Frequent readers of LGBTQ fiction might feel like they're reading the same book over and over again, with few exceptions.

Most of these books were on my TBR list for months and I didn't realize they were about gay women until I was reading them, hopefully, this list of books can interest you in expanding your reading material and seeking out different stories.

Keep Reading... Show less
Facebook Comments