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Spending An Anniversary Without Spending Money

by Michelle Reynolds - Kentucky USA

Before I got married, when I thought of anniversaries I thought of parties, exchanging presents, and possibly taking a second honeymoon if you anniversary count was up there. My thoughts have now changed since I got married two years ago at the age of 32.

We weren’t in the best of financial shape when we got married, yet managed to have a honeymoon thanks to my parents and them having a time share. We still aren’t in the best of financial shape—barely surviving even. There have been no parties and we aren’t due for a second honeymoon. And no gifts have been exchanged for either of our anniversaries—unless you count the gift of time.

Time is what we give each other. We spend some quality time with each other. In today’s world, that’s a special gift in and of itself. We often forget to spend time with loved ones. We think they will be around tomorrow, and the next day, and the day after that. One day we get the news that that special someone is gone and all we seem to think of is time. Why didn’t I spend more time with them? Why can’t I have more time with them? Their time was cut short on earth. It wasn’t their time to go.

We get so wrapped up in our own little world that we can’t grasp that time is running away from us. One day WE will run out of time. Then, there is no turning back. If we would all realize how precious time is, we wouldn’t waste it. But as I’m writing this, I’m sure tomorrow I’ll forget to spend some quality time with my son because I’m too busy writing. I’m sure it will skip my mind to call my mother, even though it won’t take much time to even check in on her. I sure wish I could call my father, though. I do have unlimited long distance, but I don’t think the telephone company reaches where he’s at. Only the passage of time will allow me to talk to my father again. (Man, am I ever bawling like a baby right now.) What just popped into my head is a line from a Steve Miller Band song, “Time keeps on ticking, ticking, ticking, into the future.” If we could just go into the past to get some of that time back…

I guess I digressed a little too much off the subject of this article, yet I felt it had to be written. It just flowed out of my fingertips—maybe in the hopes of reaching someone’s heart—even if that heart was mine. Anyway…

I planned my wedding date around the school system’s Fall Break. It takes place every year at the same time and gives a full week off from school. Two years ago the Saturday that started the fall break was October 8. That became my wedding day. I had a son from a previous relationship, who is now 7 years old. My thinking with this planning was that he could spend the time with my family during our honeymoon without missing school (my family lives 240 miles from me). I also hoped he could spend that same week each year with my family, giving me and my husband some time to ourselves. Taking care of my son for a week would be their anniversary gift to us!

We don’t have the money to go out and party or eat at a fancy restaurant. We have nice, quiet meals at home. And do I mean quiet. No kid asking to take the skin off the chicken & don’t forget to take it off the bone; oh, and I have to get all fat pieces off his plate. Mercy. I cook some of the meals that week and hubby cooks some, too. I ask for his specialties: barbeque ribs, fried chicken and fried potatoes with onions, and a beef roast.

We also watch movies together—cuddling on the couch with some kissing going on here and there. Yes, married people can make out! Might not be as frequent as when couples first meet, but there needs to be some Roman hands and Russian fingers going on now and then. (For those who don’t get the “joke” it’s meant to sound like “roaming hands and rushing fingers.” I’m a kid of the 80s and that was a popular saying back then to refer to making out.)

And of course there’s some time spent doing a certain something in the bedroom. Something a little more involved than what we were doing on the couch. And doing that without a child in the house is wonderful. You don’t have to worry about hearing, “Hey mom! Can you get me some water?” while you’re right in the middle of a whole lotta action going on. Even if the child isn’t near the bedroom, it still kills the rhythm if you know what I mean. So without the worry you can be more relaxed and you can let yourself go.

Even if you don’t have the money to exchange gifts or go out for a night, you can do something more valuable on your anniversary: spend some time with each other. Even if it’s just for one day or night, the memory of doing so will last a lot longer than the basket of flowers he bought you, or longer than the cologne you gave him.

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