Thirty Years


Dear Mom and Dad,

Today, you celebrate your thirtieth wedding anniversary.

Thirty years ago, your love story began with a Fedex driver and a receptionist. Like a romantic movie plot, he who delivered packages was turned down repeatedly by the lady at the desk–who used her dog as an excuse to get out of dates (shocking to all who know her…).

But, she finally gave in. This man who loves unconditionally fell in love with this woman who lights up a room, and the world is a brighter place because of it.

Mom, your heart is pure gold. No stranger stays a stranger when they’re in your midst, and a room fills with laughter when you’re present. Your joy is radiant. I love how the only meal you cook is Thanksgiving dinner. I love how you mess up our names with our dog’s name. I love how you made Dad buy you a television for your bedroom simply because you wanted to watch March Madness while laying in bed. I love that you’ve named the trails you exercise on the “long loop” and the “short loop” and that you think we know what that means. I love the fact that you were a teacher, yet you still can’t pronounce the word “chipolte” (chip-a-toll-ee is not correct). I love that your sense of style is infinitely better than mine and that, when we were younger, you and I had mother-daughter time at Nordstrom. I love that you ground up chocolate-covered espresso beans in the coffee maker, thinking it’d make a mocha. I love that you dance like a club-goer, sing like an off-key choir member, snort when you laugh, and still struggle to figure out how to work a treadmill. You love Dad with a love that’s tangible, and you make me want to love my husband more sacrificially.

Dad, there’s no one like you. Nearly 25 years ago, you told me who Jesus was, and you haven’t stopped telling me since. The way you treat a waiter is the way you treat a family member, and the front desk workers at your gym greet me with huge smiles because they know you’re my dad. You simply love people without limits. Your humor is evident in my dreadful jokes, and your writing is what made me want to pursue the craft. I love how you listen to instrumental Disney soundtracks while you run four miles every morning. I love that you use Pinterest to find meals to cook for when we come home to visit. I love that you emailed Morgan this week with a packing list for a trip we’re taking in two months. I love that you use headphones to watch T.V. because you know Mom hates the noise. I love that you laminated a little card that says “yes” on one side and “no” on the other to let your wife know if the dog went to the bathroom while she was still sleeping. I love that you listened to our Father-Daughter dance on repeat during long road trips to prepare your emotions for my wedding day. You’ve walked alongside Mom through thick and thin, and you never once made us second-guess your love for us. You define the word “steadfast,” and I’m proud to be your daughter.

Mom and Dad, thank you for your beautiful marriage that helps to make Jesus’ love make sense. You raised us to be self-confident life-lovers because that is who you are. You put each other over yourself, and watching you love each other makes us want to love deeper.

Together, you are better.

Happy 30th anniversary, you love bugs. I love you more than words can say.


Hol Bear


5 thoughts on “Thirty Years

  1. sydnijackson says:

    Your parents sound wonderful 🙂

  2. Susan Jordan says:

    This made me cry. Sweet tears, not sad.

    WHEN, OH WHEN, am I going to see you!?!?!?!?!?!?!


    • OH I hope so so soon, Susan!!! Pleeease text me next time you’re in Blacksburg! And, if I’m in Roanoke for longer than 10 minutes, I will text you!! 🙂 Also, I’m glad this made you cry sweet tears–it made me do the same!

  3. Leslie says:

    So sweet.

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