Responsible parenting and leadership are a start. In between reaching for the sky (Toy Story rocks).

Screw the darkness. I prefer the lightness of Pop.

Sunday, October 11, 2015

Celebrate the Wham-Bams and All in Between

"Time is passing by
I still want you
Crime is on the rise
I still want you
Climate change and debt
I still want you
Nuclear distress
I still want you
The Earth is heating up
I still want you
Hurricanes and floods
I still want you
Even more than I did before..."

—Brandon Flowers, Still Want You


And just like that, it's 18 years later. This is the part when you measure the magical moments against the realities of your life and a long-term relationship. From that moment of meeting the Mama one day at the beach...

...October 11, 1997. I usually get the words wrong, but our lover lore recounts the fact that the Mama walked up to me and asked:

"So, do you always come here alone?"

And like a fool, I almost didn't answer her; I wanted to be alone actually.

But then, "Yes, I do. And you?"

Within a few weeks we were hopelessly in love...

....to now 18 years later celebrating my 50th birthday party with friends and family on the eve of our 18th anniversary of meeting one another and our 12th anniversary of marriage. In fact, we had the local iconic Surfing Magician perform for the kids and the adults at my party, but dammit, he couldn't make me 40 again. Sigh.

But he did combine two signed playing cards from me and the Mama into one. Right on. My sweet Mama Ace in the hole.

Nearly two decades, two children, a finally refinanced mortgage, a few careers and economic ebbs and flows, and multiple family dramas later -- here we are.

None of this makes our relationship any less romantic, however. Real life may not be as colorfully dramatic and sexy as a novel or a movie, although throughout the years have been peppered with manmade and natural disasters and illness and death and -- good God, tell me to stop.

But there's one thing I know for sure, that real life can be just as super hot for long-time lovers. For example, recently the Mama read to me one of those fun sidebars from one of her Oprah magazines (which I actually had to look through to find again for myself -- ugh):

Overrated Sex: All night long
Underrated Sex: Wham, bam, thank you, man!

Add up those wham bams and you've got one hot lovin' super nova. Through all the years and a few ups and downs that even we have had, intimacy it a critical priority. Early on we made it so and told each other if we ever strayed to never come home. Seriously. Flirtation is one thing, but infidelity is the ultimate killer and actually a symptom of something missing, maybe multiple things, usually passion and intimacy, so our recommendation is don't ever frickin' lose it if you believe in it and long to keep it.

Do whatever you have to do to make that whoopee. Growing up I remember catching my Grandpa grabbing my Grandma's behind and patting it gently as he whispered something in her ear, even after 60 years of marriage. I proudly carry on that tradition today.

Of course real life gets in the way of mutual desire, like a belligerent drunk buddy who steps on your foot and leans over you to hit on your girl sitting at the bar next to you. You sulk away to the bathroom nurse the foot and the ego, and when you recover, you're either too tired or too stressed or too busy or too --

The Mama and I experience all this, but we want make it all work and keep the love simmering to a boil. Later today we'll go down to the place we met on the beach all those years ago and read our wedding vows to each other. It's a way for us to honor our love for one another, a reminder that two halves can and do make two wholes, a loving family, a continuous adventure and being the omniscient narrators of our own Rom-Com movie that goes on and on and on and on.

That's why you should always celebrate the wham-bams and all in between. Always.

Happy Anniversary Hot Stuff.




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