Today, we celebrated my mother and father in law's birthdays! We celebrated Memaw(86) a few days late and Popop(82) a few days early.I made them a homemade vanilla cream cheese cake with the help of Liam! I wanted them to know how much they mean to me, and there is really no other present I can get them, accept my time. I realize after all these years a cake is a small feat, however, with how busy I get, I wanted to show them that I still will make time for them,and that they are very important to me, more so than a busy schedule.
Memaw and Popop have been married 60+ years! They have raised two children and have bee completely involved with all five of their grandchildren's lives.They are the matriarchs of the Gary clan. When I first met them 23 years ago, I must admit, I thought they were a little more than goofy,with their ideas on family, love, marriage, and even God. Every time one of the grand kids did something, we were having a celebration. Every time you had a meal, you actually prayed before and sometimes even sang! You always had to listen to old stories of the Captain growing up, or of the ice cream shop where Memaw had her first job, or how they met while Memaw was sitting at a piano at Bethany College! I mean their was actual conversations going on with each other at the dinner table, not to mention we were sitting at an actual dinner table. Not growing up in a traditional home, I thought this all so bizarre!
However,after a few years of dating the Captain, I knew this was EXACTLY want I wanted for my own family one day. Over the years, they have loved me, embraced me, and taught me about life. They have accepted me as their own daughter, not a daughter in law,They have included me as a part of not just their family, but also their life.
Memaw and Popop are the couple you imagine when you are getting ready to say "I Do". They are the dream you have of growing old with the one you love. They are the picture in your mind,of what true love looks like. They are an example of what christian love and marriage should be.
In the 23 years I have been in this family, I have watched Popop love, honor and cherish his bride. I have witnessed Memaw care, support and encourage her groom. You see they are HOPE, that not all promises are broken. They are ENCOURAGEMENT, that love can last forever, as long as you don't give up on it. They are JOY, that we can find our happily ever after.
The world needs more Memaw's and Popop's, more examples of positive marriages, more examples of love, grace and humility. I hope one day when the Captain and I are turning 82 and 86 that we will look back on our life, and have left a legacy such as this.
Happy Birthday Memaw and Popop, thank you for being such a blessing in my life, thanks for loving me and thanks for your beautiful marriage. Today, you should be receiving the gifts, but I find that I am the one who got the greatest gift.. Thank you for raising the Captain to be a Godly man, for setting the bar high, and giving us an example of a great marriage!