Tag Archives: marriage

Best Friends

Today I have been thinking about my best friend.  Actually, today my best friend is my husband, Dennis.  I had been single about two decades when I met Dennis.  In those years, I had many girlfriends, and one who I could say was my best friend.  She was the Susan22one person who I could talk to about anything.  Susan rejoiced in my good news, and listened like a trooper when things weren’t going well for me.  She never judged me, she just knew how to be there for me.  We had many lunches and dinners together, went to movies together, attended my kid’s and grandkid’s school performances.  She was the ultimate card sender.  I have so many little gifts around my home that she gave me, and when I look at them, I think of her and it makes me smile.  

About the time I met Dennis, Susan was starting to have some serious health issues.  We still hung out together.  She always loved hearing about my escapades of the men I met through Match, and she was especially happy for me when I started to tell her about Dennis.  The last time I saw her in person was when Dennis and I got engaged.  After I married Dennis, I moved about 90 miles away.  I would call her several times, but always got her voice mail.  I ended up writing her a few times, and I knew deep inside that she was not doing well.  One day I got notice that my very dear friend had passed away.  My heart was broken.  I do not handle loss well, and losing her was so tough.  

I am married to Dennis, and I know he is supposed to be my best friend, but it had been so many years, and I was just trying to figure out how to be a wife again.  I had been single for so long.  I didn’t have to answer to anyone, and did pretty much as I pleased.  IMG_4823Now, Dennis never asked me or even hinted to me that I needed to answer to him, but I knew I now was in a permanent relationship, and I need to give him my love and attention.  I do have to say that he made that pretty easy for me.  My husband has a servant’s heart.  I watch him with his 99 year old mom, as he treats her so kindly, and not only her, he treats all the people at her nursing home so sweetly.  He will bring them coffee at lunch, and help them to their chairs.  I watch him help my children move, help his son move, be there for his nieces and nephews.  

Today, I had a doctor’s appointment, and we went together.  It was cold outside, so he offered to drive the car to the door to drop me off, and then park the car.  It was so sweet, and so unnecessary.  I told him that I was not a diva and didn’t need to be dropped off while he parked.  I like walking in the door with him.  I like that we are partners together.  When we do projects at our home we do them together.  I love painting walls, he does not.  So, he will prep the room.  He will bring me the equipment, and then he will leave me alone to do my thing, but he will also show back up if I need his help to reach where I cannot, or for anything I may need.  My husband makes beds and cleans bathrooms!  Wow!  How did I find this guy?

Those are not the reasons that he is my best friend.  In my blog last week, I shared something that I wrote years ago.  It was actually about my fear of losing my best friend, Susan.  As I finished that writing, I stated, “God will give me what I need.  If I lose my friends, and if I need friends, God will lead me to new ones.  Don’t be afraid.”  I had found Dennis—or Dennis found me—or better yet, God brought us together.  What I wrote so many years ago was true, “If I lose my friends, and if I need friends, God will lead me to new ones.”

IMG_1670I will be married to Dennis for five years this August.  We have been in each others company daily since we got married.  There have been  only a handful of days where we were geographically apart.  We do almost everything together.  For a girl who did most things alone, this was a real change, and at first was a bit uncomfortable, not bad, just didn’t know how to do that.  The funny thing is, I don’t get tired of him.  We can sit in a room and be doing our own thing, reading, on the computer, watching TV, or whatever, but it feels completely natural.  He is good about helping clean, but the kitchen scares him to death!  I take care of the cooking.  We are both alive because of that!  I have eaten only one meal he has cooked.  We still laugh about it.  I was sick, so he cooked for me.  I was instantly healed so I could cook real food again!

Dennis is my best friend because I trust him completely.  He doesn’t have a selfish bone in his body.  He is my best friend because he treats me with respect.  He thinks I’m smart—that really helps.  I have a very right-sided brain compared to his really left-sided brain, and we balance each other so well.  He laughs at my jokes and my stupid actions.  You really don’t want to hear me sing my medley of songs about whatever subject we are FullSizeRenderdiscussing, or try to see how low I can get my voice to go just to say something stupid.  I love the sound of words, so I love pronouncing them over and over to the point of stupidity, and then just start laughing.

When I met Dennis, he was a retired CEO.  I was worried he would be a stuffed shirt.  I was worried he had no sense of humor.  He says he was pretty serious when he was working. I cannot imagine it—he is so funny and goofy today.  We just love laughing together.

I realized today, that my husband is my best friend.  He knows everything about me, knows my ups and downs, knows when I am having a bad or good day.  He is my cheerleader.  He makes me feel loved, protected, needed, and beautiful.  I have been blessed.  God did give me a new best friend, like I never thought would ever happen for me.  I am blessed.

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Four Years and Counting!

This weekend is my 4th wedding anniversary. I still feel like a newlywed. With all that has happened in my past, I was not sure God would bless me with a significant other in my life. How wrong I was!

match photoI met Dennis on Match.com. Who would have thought? Definitely not me. I have been on dating sites on and off for three years. I have done Match and Christian Mingle. I have met a lot of frogs! I have also met a few men whom I enjoyed meeting. We even became friends, but the chemistry and connection was not there.

Before I go further, let me back up a bit. I was not out seeking a husband. I enjoy the company of bright men. I was tired of sitting home and not going to dinner with someone other than girlfriends and family. Don’t get me wrong, I love my girlfriends and family, but I missed the conversation I enjoy with the male species! I couldn’t figure where to meet someone. Friends and family sure weren’t setting me up, so I decided to go with online dating. My first experience was really bad, and I quit for a couple years.

During this time I connected with an old college friend and we wrote each other a lot, talking about everything under the sun. As I got to know him, I realized what a “good guy” was, and really appreciated his insight on life. I learned to be more adept at screening out the frogs because of this wonderful friendship.

IMG_3270After my son’s wedding, I realized I didn’t like being the only one at the party without a dance partner. I know that wasn’t completely true, but that is how I felt. I wanted that friend who I could call and ask to accompany me to events I didn’t want to attend alone. Thus the online dating started again.

What an adventure that had been. I met some really boring people. Some couldn’t carry a conversation for the life of them. Some whom I never gave the opportunity to meet, couldn’t put a sentence together in writing–we always started out writing. Some wanted to give me makeovers, and some were just downright arrogant! I also met some really nice guys. Some today are still my friends. I hope they will be fortunate enough to find that special lady for themselves.

I had a lot of stinky dates. I had a few that made it past the first date! There were very few who I was willing to see more than twice, even though they were not my true connection. We enjoyed the friendship.

IMG_1802I had a 30 mile radius set up on my dating website. I didn’t want to be too far away. I didn’t want the dating to be difficult. But, when I got bored, I would reset the my distance perimeters even to 1,000 miles, just to see who was out there. The “cool guy” was just always too far away! Or so I thought.

I went through a difficult summer in 2012 when my sister got ill, and I spent much time with her until her death. It was one of the saddest times of my life. I never expected to lose a sister so soon. Things were not going well with my job that year either. It seemed there were more difficult days than good days. I thought nothing good was going to happen in that year. September rolled around and I got bored again with my online site, so I advanced my radius to 100 miles. There jumped out a photo of this silver haired man with a smile that lit up the photo. I couldn’t help but send him a short note.

IMG_1286Yes, this man was Dennis! Because of his travel and my business travel, we could not meet for almost three months, but we wrote, texted, and talked a lot on the telephone. So far it looked good. He seemed to fit my criteria–smart, educated, retired professional, articulate, man of faith, good relationship with his family, not angry over the past, optimistic about the future. I had met other men with those criteria, and we enjoyed each other’s company, but there was not the special connection we needed for this to be a lasting relationship.  I knew, though, the real test would be in meeting.

Dennis lived 85 miles away. How would that work? He lived in the country. Actually, that was appealing to me. Ever since I was a teenager, I have envied those living in small communities. The pace is so gentle and peaceful. One can always drive to the big city, but I have always in the back of my head loved the idea of a small town. Even living in St. Charles, I was only two blocks from the corn fields. I loved that I would take my walks in what I considered the heartland of America–where we grow crops to feed our people.

IMG_5756Finally, Dennis and I met in late November. We went to the St. Louis Zoo. It was sunny and very cold. The wind whipped around, and neither of us dressed warm enough for such a day. I remember being thankful every time we reached another animal house that we could walk indoors! Dennis suggested we sit outside at one point when we were no where near an indoor facility. I started to sit next to him on the bench, and he told me to sit on the other side of him. Without any thought, I did so. After about 10 minutes of people watching and chatting on the bench, he suggested we get up and move on. He said he was cold, and then he said, he moved me to the sunny spot so I could be warm!

We spent the whole day at the zoo, and ended the day going out to dinner. There was nothing spectacular about the day. He was just another guy. He then volunteered to come back in town two days later. He said he would go to church with me and we could spend the day together after church. I was not sure. Then I thought of the bench and how he thought of me to sit in the sunny spot to be warm, and I realized this nice guy needed a second date with me–I could not write him off. Also, he wanted to attend church with me. That was a huge plus–someone who wanted to worship with me. How many guys offer that?

IMG_4272I guess you could say the rest is history. I found Dennis to be exactly what I have prayed for. Even funny–he is as goofy as I am! We laugh a lot. At stupid stuff! And then we laugh some more! I thought he was a stuffy executive the first time I met him. I also realized I had a shield around me and didn’t let my real self be known. Instead, we are just two ordinary people who connected.

We enjoy each other’s company, even if we are both sitting on our computers, reading, watching television, doing yard work, or painting walls together. We love being in each others presence. I love the fact he likes being dragged around the country to meet my family and friends!

My Two Quilts

He is my greatest cheerleader. When I wanted to make a quilt for my new grandson and one for his son, I was unsure. I had made only 2 quilts in my life and it was 40 years since the last one. He encouraged me and said I could do it. When I wanted to do HR consulting and coaching on a part time basis, he encouraged me to do it. When I was unsure if I should actually start writing a blog, he encouraged me to do it. He knows I am a project person. I love being creative and accomplishing projects. He knows my projects change because so many ideas are running through my head. He is good with that.

He has taught me to love road trips. I was all about hopping on an airplane to my destinations. He taught me about all the things I miss when not driving. On the trip to LA for my son’s wedding, we stopped at Carlsbad Caverns, Phoenix to visit friends and family, The Grand Canyon, and on the return trip, San Francisco, through Utah to visit more family, and getting lost in Wyoming. When we drove to Big Sky, we stopped at the Corn Palace, Mt. Rushmore, and Jackson Hole. There are so many things to see on the way to and from!

He has embraced my children and grandchildren. I have a large family of aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews, and friends who are loved like family — he accepts them all — welcomes them all to our home.  He is the most gracious host to anyone who visits our home.  My children have also embraced Dennis and his son.  We all love spending time together.

Dennis and me with my four sons.

On occasion we take in the sunrises in the early morning from our screened porch, or sit out there during a thunderstorm to watch the sky light up and feel the thunder roll. We hike IMG_1670through the woods and he points out the wildlife around us.

Dennis has a servant’s heart. He will help people in need. I have seen him move more furniture for friends and family than a moving company, care for his 98 year old mother on a day to day basis, muck a barn for someone who is too ill to do it, make beds and clean bathrooms for a wife who isn’t fond of those particular chores! He does it all with much care and love.

He is not perfect—he can’t cook! That was the only criteria he did not meet on my criteria of significant others! But, I love to cook, and occasionally he will perform as my sous chef. We balance our talents so perfectly.

I am blessed to have this man in the later years of my life. Happy Anniversary to Dennis and Me!

Thank you, Lord, for blessing me with this wonderful man.

I hear something
Not sure,
What is it?
Shh, listen.
My heart is singing.

Quiet, but sweet,
Listen as it sings!
The story of joy
The song of delight
My heart sings.