Yesterday was my parents’' 45th wedding anniversary. In this day and age, that number seems monumental. I failed to call them, which is ludicrous because of all the days in the year, this would seem the most important. If they'd never gotten married, you wouldn't be reading this blog because good old' Scott wouldn't exist. Plain and simple.
I know from my few conversations with them about it that my parents had a rough go of it early in their relationship. My grandfather Lamb actually broke them up at one point. But their love was too strong and they found their way back into each other’s lives. After they were engaged, my dad was never in favor with my grandfather. I admire my mom for sticking up for the man she loved, even though her father disapproved.
My father graduated and got his first job in Georgia while my mom completed nursing school at the University of Miami. Each weekend, he would drive back down to Florida to see her. Can you imagine? That took a lot of love... and stamina. Their first year of marriage was tough. They were in Georgia during the 60's. My dad taught black students and was pretty liberal in his beliefs. Every student deserved an education is how he felt. I know they must have experienced some pretty harsh stuff while living in the south. In the 80's, when I was gearing up to paint the car that would become the Whomobile, I first proposed painting the Confederate flag on the room of that beat up Delta 88. My dad flat out refused. When I asked, he simply said, "I lived in the south. We won't have that flag on our car." After my older sister Beth was born, a job opening at my dad’s high school alma mater opened up. He got the job and returned to his hometown of North Olmsted, Ohio in the late 60’s.
In Ohio, my folks first lived in a trailer park while they saved money for a house. During that time, my brother, Budd, was born and the family basically lived on white bread sandwiches with little to no furniture. The first house they lived in was near the North Olmsted high school. That was the house they were living in when I was born. I have no memories of it. Soon thereafter, they purchased the large plot of land on North Park Drive where they would build their last house in Ohio. This was a great house. And after my sister, Heidi was born; the transition to Ohio was complete. They lived in that same house from the early 70's until they moved to Tucson in the mid- 90's.
I know that life was not easy for them. Raising four kids must have been insane. There have been financial scares. Job scares. Health scares. But many, many good things, too. I have learned how to be confident, when to shut the hell up, when to stand up for myself and I learned how to be loyal to your family no matter how much bullshit comes between you. My parents were tough at times. There are things that they did that I will never do to my own children. I attribute their child raising technique to the time they were born and to the way they were raised. Not everything they did was right. But from their mistakes, we, their children, have learned to be better people and better parents. As I continue to try and raise Sophie and Jacob the best that I can, I know that I'll make mistakes, too. And I know that my kids will grow into better people than I will ever be.
I guess that's the lesson of parenthood. You do your best to raise your kids with your love and hope that they continue to grow into good human beings. I believe that the Malchus kids all turned out fine. And for that, I owe my folks a great big hug and a thank you.
Thanks Mom & Dad. Happy Anniversary.