I’m sure my daughter would tell you that I often try to make a life lesson out of everything…or at least that is how I interpreted the eye roll.
When she was a teenager and was beginning her dating experience, one piece of advice I gave her was to look for the guy who would eat mushrooms for her. [She would quickly tell you that was not the only advice…since leaving advice to a single tidbit is not within my skill set] Perhaps as you read this your response is the same as her’s, “What?”
Let me explain. Back in the last century, when my wife and I first started dating…I guess I need to digress for a moment. We actually only dated two weeks before I moved in with her. I had to move in with her because I was a soldier in the US Army and they frowned on her moving into the barracks with me, and we were not getting any sleep because I would stay at her apartment until 2 am on most nights. Moving in together was a survival necessity. We lived together for six months before we were married, but that is a different story.
When I moved in, I noticed that my girlfriend, and now wife, had very little food in her kitchen cabinets. So, I took over grocery shopping because she could not go to the Army commissary (military grocery store) with me until we were married. [And in my retirement, I’m doing all of the shopping again] I quizzed her about what she liked and I went about buying those things with military precision and dedication. Among those items were mushrooms, which became a part of most of our dinner meals.
About three years later, meaning after we had been married two-and-a-half years, we were in a restaurant and I ordered a steak. The waitress asked me if I wanted sauteed mushrooms with my steak. I told her no, that I did not like mushrooms.
My wife looked at me with disbelief, her mouth hanging open slightly as she said, “Since when, we eat mushrooms all the time.” My response, but you like mushrooms.
The meaning of my mushroom metaphor was this–find a guy who will do things just because they make you happy, find that person who will find joy in your happiness. But while you are doing that, you have to be willing to eat a few mushrooms too.
In March of 2019, we will celebrate our 35th wedding anniversary–my daughter and her husband have now been married over six years, have two rambunctious boys, and are enjoying life…while they continue to eat their metaphorical mushrooms.
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