WE MADE IT ANOTHER YEAR!
54 and counting
Today is our 54th anniversary. Sam is celebrating by doing his usual Thursday Meals on Wheels route. I cleaned out the lower kitchen cabinets. Tonight we are going to dinner at the Red Lobster. A perfect day.
One thing that I’m very thankful for is that Sam and I have always been faithful to each other. I’ve told this story before but it fits into this context so here it is again.
About 18 years ago when we lived in a condo, Sam was riding his bike through the development and came upon a young woman with a flat tire on her bike. He stopped to fix it for her and went on his way. He told me about it, and the next time we drove through the complex, he pointed out where the young woman had been. I said, “Would you recognize her again?” ”No,” he said, “but I’d recognize the bike.”
That reinforced the feeling that I have always had - I didn’t have to worry about him being unfaithful. Over the years we’ve watched the marriages of dear friends break up because of infidelity. I’m so grateful to God to have a husband who never strayed, and that I was never tempted to stray.
An Internet friend, Betty, directed me to an article written by Anita Staver during the Petraeus scandal. Here are excerpts.
While we await the outcome of the Benghazi investigation and watch the sad demise of another career, recognize that temptation lurks where we least expect it. As Confucius said: “When we see men of a contrary character, we should turn inwards and examine ourselves.”
So, what are the practical personal lessons from Petraeus and Broadwell? How can the average Joe (and Jane) flee temptation?
Strategies that work for losing weight or giving up cigarettes work in other situations. Consider these tips for fidelity and career longevity:
Control your daydreams
Never be alone with a temptation
Avoid alcohol, as it lessens inhibitions
Enlist a friend to keep you accountable
Do not test the limits of your willpower
Stay away from compromising situations
Rehearse a good reaction to facing temptation
Focus on positive reasons for your commitment
Never let your guard down. If a coworker, a friend’s spouse, or your biographer becomes too appealing, take evasive action! Even change jobs to stay safe.
Recognize the danger signs: If you start spending more time with someone or take extra care of your appearance when they are near, this is a problem. If you become attracted to someone who is off-limits, get out of the danger zone. Don’t walk, RUN!
Flirting is not a sport for married folks – unless you flirt with your own spouse. No affair has ever “just happened.” Infidelity comes from a series of minor indiscretions and little steps in the wrong direction. Finally, if you are stupid enough to tweet, text, or email threats or revealing photos, no advice will stick, so you are on your own.
These lessons are obviously ignored by campaign schools, military briefings, and Ivy League curriculum. For this reason – and many more – we haven’t seen the last Clintonesque scandal. Unfortunately infidelity, like abortion, is neither safe nor rare in America. And affairs, like elections, have consequences.