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My Song: "Can’t You See" by The Marshall Tucker Band, reminds me that marriage is worth the effort

Joined: 2/5/2011
Posts: 50
I met my husband in 1983 when I followed my best friend to the low-country of SC following graduate school. It took only one meeting for me to fall for his good looks and sweet talk. And I never looked back.

We’ve been married for 28 years now and have raised four daughters together. We spent countless hours volunteering, chauffeuring, managing, doctoring, nurturing, encouraging, making priceless memories, laughing until it hurt, praying, creating family traditions--a good deal of which took place outside the home at school, gymnastics, piano lessons, soccer games/practices, cello, band, dance team, competition dance, chorus, softball, rehearsals, performances, and so on.

And we have survived. And that survival can be attributed to love, commitment, laughter, perseverance and music. Yes, music. The husband is quite adept at playing music. Each time I was pregnant, he would sit with the guitar in front of me and play songs for each of the girls. They were born knowing all about rock-n-roll. As they grew, he continued to play and each daughter has her own special song that reminds her of the first song he taught her to play or sing. I, too, have a special song. It’s the one the husband played every single time he was frustrated with me- “Can’t You See?” by the Marshall Tucker Band.

When our daughters were growing up and heard their dad playing that song, they’d ask, “What did Mom do to upset Dad this time?” which would make everyone laugh and magically dispel the current controversy. He rarely plays that song now except for the pure enjoyment of it. After 28 years of marriage, what’s left to argue anyway? But I like when he does play it. The song has served as a constant reminder that life is short and time spent in anger is time wasted. It has reminded me that arguments usually ensue because one person isn’t getting their way. It has reminded us both to understand when to lend a helping hand, or to listen, or to lend a shoulder, or just give a bit of space. It reminds us that there are two people in this relationship, not one. And that we both have feelings, opinions, needs, desires, dreams…

When he plays that song these days, in our empty nest, it reminds us of the days we stopped an argument from getting out of hand because we were responsible for showing our daughters how to have a good relationship. Showing them how to compromise, laugh with and respect one another. And that communication is key. Even through a song.

To this very day when that song plays on the radio or my iPod, it melts my heart. No matter how angry I have gotten with the husband over the last 28 years that song reminds me that anger is counterproductive and that a road paved with patience and tolerance is a much wiser path to follow.
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Comment by warren

Joined: 6/22/2011
Posts: 293
After reading your beautiful story, I had to find the song. Yep, I remember it now. Thank you. Best wishes for at least 28 more years of happiness.
Posted: Friday, August 31, 2012 5:10:58 PM
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Comment by pammlofton

Joined: 2/5/2011
Posts: 50
Warren- Thank you for calling my story beautiful! I just heard the song on my iPod a few minutes ago and had to smile all the way through it!
Posted: Friday, August 31, 2012 6:01:36 PM
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Comment by NicoleLVMullis

Joined: 5/9/2012
Posts: 34
Momaloft - Isn't it amazing what music can do, especially for a marriage?

Your story reminded me of last New Year's Eve. My family was on the tail end of an international work assignment in Canada. My husband and I were dog-tired, letting our three kids be rowdy until midnight. We watched the ball drop in the States, pecked each other on the lips, sent the kids to bed and started cleaning up the mess. The television was still flickering. Singer Ben Harper came on, preforming his song, Skin Thin. Haunting. Beautiful. It so neatly summed up our homesickness, our struggles, our commitment to each other, everything. Soon, we were no longer cleaning but slow dancing in the glow of the television – a much better welcome to our 16th New Year together.
Posted: Thursday, September 6, 2012 4:35:04 PM
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Comment by pammlofton

Joined: 2/5/2011
Posts: 50
I love how a song can do that---take us from the drudgery or routine or anger, etc. and bring us together for some re-energizing! Thanks for sharing that sweet story!
Posted: Thursday, September 6, 2012 5:38:51 PM
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Comment by bugcandy

Joined: 11/5/2008
Posts: 286

Once again, you're an essay finalist for this story above. :)

Posted: Thursday, September 6, 2012 7:30:31 PM
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