Now I would like to raise a glass to my parents. I want to tell you how being a product of their marriage has blessed me and my family.
One thing I learned from my parents is that when you find that one person—your person—it is forever. That freaked me out a little when I met my one person. But the great thing is that I learned from my parents’ example how to make a marriage work.One thing that has been true for my parents from the beginning is that they are a team working towards the same goals. Before they were married—when my mom was still in high school—they had a joint checking account. That early in their life together they already had their eye on the prize, were working together towards the life they wanted. And they did it—they built this amazing life together.
I also learned from my parents that marriage is not just about having a partner in the hard work of building a life. I learned from them that while you have to take the work part seriously, you had better take yourself lightly if you’re going to make it.Barbara and Charles’ granddaughter Small—my girl—is beginning to have some male admirers, and at one point she was trying to decide between two of them. “I like one of them, but he makes me nervous,” she told us. “The other one makes me laugh.”
“Always choose the one who makes you laugh,” we told her.
I was blessed to grow up in a house that was filled with laughter, with parents who are still making each other laugh 50 years in. I can’t tell you what a great and wonderful gift that has been.All of you here have shared laughter with my parents. And that’s the other thing my parents taught me about marriage: it will take more than the two of you to make it work. The saying goes, “You can choose your friends, but you can’t choose your family.” I learned from my parents that that’s not true, because you can make your friends into your family. My parents are devoted to one another, but they are also devoted to all of you. You keep them going.
So I want to say to my parents: Thank you for giving me such an amazing example of love and marriage and family. I try every day in my marriage to live up to this example. I feel very blessed to be part of this family and to have you as my parents. I love you.To my parents—alla salute.