After writing my weekly musings for the best part of a decade, I now find the Wednesday morning ritual a cathartic experience.
I often explain to readers I meet around the country that I rarely set out with a subject in mind but the words seem to flow together to create something readable. Other times I am rather clear in my objective.
Today it is the latter; today I want to write about tomorrow.
Tomorrow marks the 21st anniversary of my marriage to Sinead. As luck would have it, last night we both attended a pro-marriage rally in the very place that our wedding reception was held all those years ago. It brought back a flood of happy memories and reminded me how blessed I have been in the years since.
It also reminded me that the best memories aren’t about the things you have but the experiences you share.
Like a lot of newly married couples, we didn’t have a lot of spare money or resources. Our ‘night out’ was often a Friday post-work pizza in the park with a longneck of beer for me and perhaps an inexpensive bubbly for Sinead. Later, that ritual continued when our children were born as they played on the slides and seesaws.
Today I guess we would be banned from such a simple pleasure because it would all be declared a dry zone or pizza could be deemed an obesity hazard!
Things have certainly come a long way since then. One of our boys is now an adult and the other not far behind. Sinead and I no longer share a car but I still walk to work (in Canberra at least) just like I did all those years ago. Sinead hasn’t aged a bit and is still the best person I know although I’m not sure she could say the same about me!
Over the years we have faced any number of personal and public challenges. However, every single one of them was made easier because they we faced them together. Our very different personal strengths and qualities complement each other to build a formidable team that gave us the strength to cope with any circumstance.
That complementarity was also instrumental in the development of the two fine sons whom we are both very proud of. They have their father’s resilience (and a bit of his spirit too) and their mother’s wisdom. Given the amount of time that I have spent away from home over the past eleven years I often say that Sinead deserves all the credit, although there is no question as to where they learned their BBQ skills from!
Of course, my meandering reflection on marriage today is a personal indulgence. But then again this column has always been about more than politics. Sometimes it’s a reminder about what is really important in life.
Pictured: Senator Bernardi speaking at the No campaign event on the marriage survey, at the Adelaide Town Hall, Tuesday 19 September 2017