Conversations with Kids · Family life · Prevention and Addiction · recovery

Honoring My Parents’ 50th Anniversary with “More” Words of Encouragement for Those In Recovery and the Partners Who Love Them

Ehrman wedding 69
Seen here  May 31, 1969 dancing to “More” sung by Bobby Darin

I had to ask permission from my dad to share any information about his journey to recovery as an alcoholic.  He generally keeps this part of his private life with the exception of his AA community, in which he is very passionate.  When I asked permission via text message– because I wanted him to be able to think about his reply and not put him on the spot– he shared, “No, I don’t mind if you share it, BUT in general I keep it private except in meetings or AA anniversaries.  Why would I take credit for something I should have been doing all along.  As of today, it’s been roughly one day sober and 33 years, 4 months, and 10 days of experience in staying sober, but then again, who’s counting…lovyas.  Dad.”

However, I share this with you because my parents are celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary today, May 31.  The conversation came up earlier this week with our children who have been really into music from the 50s and 60s thanks to this year’s elementary choral concert with all songs Elvis.  “Mom, did Gram and Pop dance to an Elvis song at their wedding?”

I knew the answer was no, but I actually had to ask my parents what their song was.  I feel like this was something that I should have known in my memory despite not being present at their actual wedding.  Of course, then she followed up with our wedding song, meaning mine and her dad’s.  Crickets.  No idea.  I knew it was by Depeche Mode, and I could picture us dancing, but alas, no title came to mind.  Geoff later reminded me our song was “Somebody to Love. “Good grief.  So again, I text my mom this time, and she writes just one word, “More.”  Hmmm.  Not a lot of information, and if you just youtube that one word, what comes up is not appropriate for me to share, funny enough.  Then I google “songs from the 60s which include more” and three hits up front by Andy Williams, Doris Day, and Bobby Darin.  Man, must have been a great song for those big three to knock it out of the park.  I guessed they went with Doris Day, but I was wrong.  Bobby Darin.  I’ve included the link here with lyrics in case you needed a pick me up as I did here at the end of a chaotic school year.

More than the greatest love
The world has known,
This is the love
That I give to you,
Alone.
More than the simple words
I try to say,
I only live to love you
More each day.
More than you’ll ever know
My arms long to hold you so.
My life will be in your keeping;
Waking, sleeping,
Laughing, weeping.
Longer than always
Is a long, long time.
But far beyond forever,
You’ll be mine.
I know I never lived before,
And my heart is very sure
No one else could love you more.
More than the greatest love
The world has known,
This is the love
That I give to you,
Alone.
More than the simple words
I try to say,
I only live to love you
More each day.
More than
For 50 years, my mom and dad have loved each other and loved their children, friends, grandchildren, neighbors, spouses of their children– and in no particular order depending on the day.  Like any marriage, it has not always been flowers and chocolate, but what my parents have always modeled for my brother and me over the years is the journey.  One thing I know for a fact is that they married the right person all those years ago.  Of course I have to say that, or I would not exist as I do today, nor would our children, etc.  But they really did.  The second fact I know for certain is that if my dad did not make the choice to enter a rehabilitation center, detox, and be sober one day at a time when he did almost 34 years ago, then we would not be celebrating these 50 years of love.  We would have celebrated 16 and that probably would have ended their story.  Yet, recovery allowed them (and our family) “more.”
The journey to sobriety has not always been easy for either of my parents, and now a parent myself, I hate to think about how many times my words or actions towards either one of them might have driven them to take a big fall off the proverbial wagon.  I say “they” because my mom has always been my dad’s biggest supporter even when she wanted to kill him.   AA has supported her as well.  They have wonderful friends through AA and take pride in both of their communities of friends as that helped to sustain my dad’s recovery which in turn helped to sustain their faith, friendships, sense of humor, and love– all necessary components to a healthy marriage.  That and a blue ’67 Chevy convertible, which carried them on their first date along with both my brother and me home from the hospital after our arrivals.  That car only lasted until last year, but sure was a big part of their ride together.
Fifty years is a long time.  They were young, but they chose well for one another.  I am very proud to be their daughter, and I know I speak for both my brother and extended family members– we are proud that your love was worth the struggle and joy and laughter and tears throughout these 50 years.  Here’s to many “More.”  Happy anniversary Mom and Dad.  We love you!
If you or someone you love dearly is in need of support locally, please do not hesitate to check out The Bridge Project here in Lincoln, NH as they connect people with the resources they need.
Contact Information
Tracy Shamberger
info@thebridgeprojectnh.org
603-348-4009
Nationally, links are here for:  Alcoholics Anonymous and US Department of Health and Human Services Substance Abuse, and the hotline is 1-800-662-4357 (HELP).

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