My wife and mother got along like peas and carrots. Twenty-three years ago, we created a mother-in-law suite in our house and she moved in with us.

I think my mother loved my wife more than me. She threatened that if Dot died first and I married another woman, she would move out to which I replied, “Where are you going to go?” She never responded.

This June will be my 40th wedding anniversary. Long-term relationships can become comfortable like an old pair of shoes. They can lose their new car smell. I believe that marriage should always “snap, crackle and pop” rather than becoming comfortable like roommates. Whenever I say that, people look at me like I’m crazy and change the topic of conversation.

I think marriage is more than a marathon of getting to the end without a divorce, even if you’re miserable with that person. You can be married 40 years but happily married 10. Is that what you want? I do not want that.

What reminds you of that person that took your breath away, that made you became stupid around them and spend your last dime (thank you for the song, “When a Man Loves a Woman.”) One person wrote down all the reasons he married his wife. When they got into a fight, he took it out and re-read it. I did the same. I called it, “Why Dot?”

1) Character – From the start, not only did she let me be me, but she also accepted me just as I am with all my quirkiness.

2) I trust her implicitly.

3) There is a lightness in her voice I have never heard from anyone else.

4) Chemistry wow- her beauty has always mesmerized me.

5) Heart – she has a really good heart that genuinely cares for others.

6) Heart – she has a pure heart that has no malice.

7) She has a kindhearted heart that gains honor. Proverbs 11:16 “A kindhearted woman gains honor, but ruthless men gain only wealth.

8) She forgives and also forgets.

9) She does me good and not harm all the days of my life – Proverbs 31:12

10) She works hard.

11) She only lives in the moment. She doesn’t live in the past or the future.

12) She is loyal.

Let me challenge you to create your own, “Why (person’s name)?” Keep it in a place that you can access it when either that person drives you crazy or you just want to remember when they first took your breath away.

I’ll be back soon. Until then, live well my friend.

The Rev. Tony Marciano is the president/CEO of the Charlotte Rescue Mission. He is available to speak to your group. Visit for details.

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