Happy Anniversary To Us by Tasha Halpert

S7T bt BrendaStephen and I met in 1977 while we were both working for a small theater group called Theater Workshop Boston. I was an occasional personal assistant to the director, Stephen did a freelance publicity and public relations and the director had hired him to help out. We were both called to the office on the same day, being together there for several hours while we helped the director. We agreed to meet again soon afterward to spend more time together.

That second meeting quickly grew into a friendship as we discovered much in common and found a great deal to communicate about. Soon because I needed to move from my small apartment, Stephen invited me to become his roommate. Fortuitously, the current one had just moved out. W

As we proved to be so compatible, we soon moved in together and got another roommate to help make ends met. We threw in our lot together and began working as a team soon after that. Stephen taught me about publicity and public relations; I taught him about meditation and intuitive skills. We began teaching classes together. He encouraged me to write, and I began what ended by being a series of books we self published later on.

After nearly three years because we wanted to show the world it was possible to do that and still be lovers we made the decision to marry. On July 5,1980 beneath a beautiful Copper Beech, we were married by a minister friend of mine. After 35 years we are still both married and lovers. As well, we are best friends. To some extent this is due to a decision we made at my insistence very soon after we met: we agreed always to be honest with one another about our feelings.

I felt then and feel even more strongly now that a good, long lasting relationship must be built on honesty in general but especially when it comes to feelings. There are times when it is painful to be honest about how one feels. However, if one does not share the feelings they can grow into resentment and then anger. If instead the feeling is shared, this does not happen.

Change can be optional. What matters is that the feelings are expressed. Sometimes it is impossible to alter behavior, especially if it is an ingrained part of his or her nature. For instance, I will probably always have a tendency to wait to leave for an appointment until the last minute, thus frustrating Stephen. He will doubtless always collect things, resulting in piles and crowded living space.

Generous measures of patience, tolerance and kindness toward one another have been vital to the longevity of our relationship. Also important is that we do not compete with one another. Each rejoices over the triumphs of the other, nor is there any jealousy or envy between us. When you truly love someone it is their happiness that matters. As well, so does yours. In our years together we have tried always to give each other room to grow. Our love for one another is the fertile soil that makes that happen.

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