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Original Writings, Images, Video and Artworks of Mike Hartley

Finally OffDuty

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As the plate says, I finally OFFDUTY from the job that pays the bills.  And no that isn’t my car. If I buy a Ford it’s a truck. And while my daughter would love a yellow car, that just isn’t her Dad’s style. But back to OffDuty, the work week is complete. Time to spend some time with family and friends. And the plans have come together well.

Another vanity plate. Photo by Mike Hartley

Another vanity plate.
Photo by Mike Hartley

I’m done with the doctors for the week. There is a blowout happy hour scheduled for this evening with the boys. Friday will be quality time with my wife and my future daughter in-law. Saturday is seeing some old work friends for breakfast and that afternoon we celebrate my in-laws 61st wedding anniversary. I know its over 60 but I may be wrong on the number. Slackness on my part there.

Which brings me to the subject of wedding anniversaries. We are quickly approaching our 35th later this month. I’ve realized through my personal and professional and some social relationships that this isn’t the norm. One you have to live a full life to get that number years in. Next you need some role models to show you how special finding that right person is and sticking with them through thick and thin like your own parents. Next it helps a lot if your closest friends also have long relationships going as well. But the people who stay together realize early on. It’s not a contest, it’s never 50/50, it’s only a win if you BOTH WIN and it’s up to only you TWO. When one individual wants control, that is a tough one to sustain a long time, unless the other person doesn’t count and then it’s still not a win for either party. If your going through the motions, nobody wins. If you lose your passion for the other person, nobody wins. If you’re not growing together, your growing apart.

It’s brutal work sometime. I had to learn to swallow my ego and pride sometimes. I had to take into account another persons feelings and wishes and desires. I had to modify my goals. But those few things pale in comparison to what my wife has had to adjust to. For I’ve been a deeply flawed person over my years. But I’ve always tried changing for the better. And that is very easy in fact because I love her so much. And if you have love, you can’t believe how much that can drive you to better things and a wonderful life.

So an early Happy Anniversary to my Father and Mother in-law. Two very special people who have supported us from the beginning and have helped ease the pain of losing both my parents. There are few things like a handshake from Dad and a hug from Mom. And while I miss my own parents grip and caress, it’s nice to still have them from parents. I’m not their offspring, but I have always felt like a member of their family.

Author: Mike Hartley

With a lifetime and a half in the Newspaper industry I'm preparing for my retirement career as an Artist, Writer, Photographer and Video content provider. I'm a proud father of two wonderful children and I'm still married to the first girl I fell in love with and probably only one that would have me.

One thought on “Finally OffDuty

  1. And a very happy early anniversary to two wonderful parents who have been a wonderful example of love.

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