My wife has been gone for two days! No, thank God, she didn’t leave me, although, I deserve it sometimes when I don’t treat her like I should. We’ve been married for 53 years this coming August 9th and I am so lucky to have her as my bride. Those of you who know us very well know that and are aware that we met on a blind date. Now being married that long is something great but to have it happen as a result of a blind date, well, that is just fantastic! Bear with me as I repeat some of the things that I, no doubt, have told some of you already about Barbara.
My family was poor, as we grew up but she and her family of 12 kids were really poor. She was no. 10 on the list of children that Harold and Edna Ball produced. Right there, you can see that she didn’t get much attention and her oldest sisters were old enough that they could have been her mother. The girls all looked like their mother and all were beautiful. That’s why we have beautiful children (one boy and one girl) just as we planned.
Anyway, we met on this blind date in Ottawa, Illinois, where I was working for Standard Oil. She was just out of high school and working at a local clothing store. I knew no one in this small city of about 10-15,000 people at the time (1958). Wow, that seems like a long time ago…….and, I guess, it was! I am managing this Standard Oil training service station where new Standard Oil dealers would come to get properly trained to run such an operation. There is a lot more to operating a service station than most people realize. Wow, the service stations today are no longer “service stations” but 7-11 type grocery stores. No longer does anyone pump the gasoline for you or to check your oil the rest under the hood, or clean your windshield, or, for goodness sakes, sweep out your car. Don’t you miss all that free and needed service that you must perform yourself now? We all wore Standard Oil uniforms, kept the rest rooms sparkling, and just ran a service station like it should be.
Anyway, it was definitely love at first sight, for me, and I even took her home (65 miles away) to meet my parents and to my favorite little restaurant in Ladd, Illinois. From then on she would come to my station, after work and spent her time cleaning and shining up anything at the station that was needed. That was the reason that I got all kinds of awards by Standard Oil for the appearance of my operation.
Barbara was beautiful then and still is today at age, 73. Oops, I guess that I shouldn’t be telling anyone her age. Everyone thinks that she is much younger…even beautiful without any make-up.
This was one of those special relationships where the two of us could sit on the couch in the living room and not say a word to each other and be as comfortable as anyone could be.
Barbara, to this day, makes me feel like a king every day by the way she does so many things for me and never without a complaint. I am realizing how much she does for me as she is gone this week at our daughter’s (Sherry) home in Lansing, Michigan. With my heart problems, I can no longer fly so I had to stay home.
Every married couple needs to do this occasionally to remind each other how much we love each other and how much we miss each other when we are apart. Yes, this is only day number two and I wish she was her so I could give her a hug and a kiss before we go to bed.
And, of course, because I miss all the things she does for me every day that I try to remember to say thank you for but many times I don’t.
At this part of our lives, as with many couples, the man (me) is having a lot of health problems and my wife is right there, all the time, taking care of me. Now this is REALLY a sign of love! I can be heading for the hospital any time of the day or night, sitting in the ER before being served, and then by my bedside until I get well enough to go home. She is really my head nurse making sure that I am receiving the correct medicine (I take 40 pills a day a various time, getting me to and from my doctors and the hospital and to all the testing that goes on.
Barbara, I love you a lot…..more than I can ever tell you. Even though I don’t tell you enough, I appreciate every single thing that you do for me. I am the luckiest husband in this world and I mean that sincerely.
Barb, hurry up and get home. I miss you and need you by my side. I don’t know what I would ever do without you! I wish every one of you men out there could be lucky enough to have a woman like I do.
Written by Ted Anderson. Insurance agent Ted W. Anderson worked in sales for half a century, has lived in Albany since 1993. He is president of Dover Lane Neighborhood Watch. Send email to him at firstname.lastname@example.org.