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The 75 Year Plan Words & Wine Down Wednesday

The 75 Year Plan

Howdy, Folks! Long time, no sip! I know, I miss it too. Believe it or not, from the feedback I have gotten since starting this blog, ‘Words & Wine Down Wednesday’ posts are your favorite. I get it, any excuse to drink, right? {sip}

Reading the title to this post probably leaves you asking yourself, “What is The 75 Year Plan? What is this going to be all about? And where did Tracy come up with this one?” Don’t worry, just SIP back and listen! Before we get started though, I have to share, yet again, my famous quote. You know the one ….

‘Failing to Plan, is Planning to Fail’

We will get back to that quote (often) as we journey through ‘The 75 Year Plan’! {gulp} Many of you are aware that my husband and I celebrated 24 years of marriage this past Monday. To some, that may seem a long time. For others, that ain’t nothing. With how fast time flies when you’re having fun, or NOT having fun, 24 years covers a very short time frame in the book called ‘Life’. The question I often ask myself is this, “How do I want to spend that time?” There really isn’t a lot of options. They will be different for everyone. My two choices consist of ‘thriving’ or ‘miserable’. Notice I didn’t use the word ‘happy’. Through trial and error, I have found it most conducive to NOT live in a pipe dream! I am certainly not always ‘happy’. In fact, on a rare occasion, I may be quite unhappy, but I am still always ‘thriving’. You catch me, I know you do … so have a sip & a hot flash, and let’s get down to business. {swig}

The 75 Year Plan

My husband’s Grandparents (Papa & Grams) lived to be 99 and 95. They both passed away quite recently, within a year of each other. In April of 2013, at the ages of 97 and 94, Papa and Grams celebrated 75 years of marriage. They were honored and awarded a plaque for being the ‘oldest – living married couple in the state of Michigan’. What an amazing honor! {cheers}.

The 75 Year Plan

The 75 Year Plan

The 75 Year Plan

Do you think that Grams and Papa’s 75 year marriage have anything to do with ‘The 75 Year Plan’? Aaaa, you smarty-pants, you! {big sip for big girl … btw, getting bigger with each sip … just sayin’} I’ve always admired Paul’s grandparents. I believe they showcased not a ‘perfect’ marriage, but rather a very ‘real’ marriage. They ‘thrived’. Not always happy, rarely miserable, but always thriving.

The 75 Year Plan

The 75 Year Plan

My husband and I married young. I was two weeks shy of legal drinking age … just a baby. Paul was 3 1/2 years older and was already well on his way to a successful career. We married, did a lot of what ‘just married’ couples do, and as a result, had a lot of babies. {gulp to good ole’ days, right fellas?} We were set up nicely to be on ‘The 75 Year Plan’. But you know how it goes, a lot has happened since that first day of marriage, and Paul and I have CHOSE to ‘thrive’ right through it. Plugging along, as you do. Of course, not always happy, rarely miserable, but always thriving.

The 75 Year Plan

The 75 Year Plan

When you marry as young as Paul and I did, ‘The 75 Year Plan’ is not out of reach. Ya see, if we are honored and awarded someday for being married 75 years, that would put me at 96 and Paul at 99. That’s pretty much the same ages as Grams and Papa were when they passed away. So, what do you think? Can it be done? {gulp} Well, anything’s possible, of course it can – God willing! But before we get into what it takes to be on ‘The Plan’, let’s take a look at my famous quote {again, sip} ….

‘Failing to Plan, is Planning to Fail’

Do you think Grams and Papa were on the plan? Whether or not they realized it, I’m sure they were. I think we ALL need to be on ‘The Plan’. Now, does this mean that your plan should be ‘The 75 Year Plan’? For most, probably not. After all, many of you have been divorced or widowed and have had to start all over again at a later age. For some, like Paul and I, if you married young, were blessed with good genes and live a healthy lifestyle, it’s possible and something to strive for. Now, let’s not forget, a goal like that comes with plenty of work. There are no free passes.

The 75 Year Plan

It’s important to recognize that a good foundation takes years to build and when it comes to marriage, it can not be done alone. It involves a lot of trial and error, and it certainly will not always be easy. It’s also important to realize that although ‘people don’t change’, ‘people do change’. In many ways, Paul is exactly who he was when I married him 24 years ago. But he has also changed. I have, as well. Events and circumstances can grip us, for better or for worse. Remember my other famous quote from this blog post, here ‘Expectations are the root of all heartache.’ Never be too cynical into believing that trials, tribulations, and heartache won’t surface in a ‘thriving’ marriage. If you believe that bass-ackwards way of thinking, divorce is a highly, probable outcome. It’s not an alternative when you are on ‘The Plan’. {gulp} I know what you’re thinking, poor Paul! {insert bigger gulp, here}

The 75 Year Plan

Policies to ‘The Plan’

  • Everyday choices result in everyday outcomes. You have to constantly ‘work’ on your issues, both the small and the biggies. Bear in mind… what’s a biggie to him may not be to you, and vice-versa. You’re constantly leaving the dirty dishes in the sink, may not be big to you. And his constant leaving the kitchen cabinets open, may not be big to him, but if these issues bother one another, where does that leave ‘The Plan’? The translation is that you have to work on those issues, and other bigger ones, if in fact you want to be together for the next fifty-one years – which, of course, Paul and I do. For a relationship to be sustainable, you have to focus on the little everyday things that will help (the relationship), not just now,  but in the long run. Again, the goal is too thrive, not be miserable. Anyone can get to a number miserably. But why not get to that number thriving?
  • This policy here, goes very well with one I just mentioned: We ALL have perpetual, bad habits to break – not just your spouse. So get over yourself, Ms. Perfect and Mr. Ego! {gulp} Put more emphasis into working on your own bad habits, then you do pointing out your spouses. I’m sure, without any hesitation, both you and your spouse can point out each other’s bad habits. So if you are already aware of them, try ‘lightening up’ a little and have some fun with it. Here are two examples that will result in two very different outcomes. Let’s say Paul left his coffee cup in the family room and then went golfing. I may send him a text message, showing a picture of his coffee cup and type one of the following with it …. TEXT #1: “You left your coffee cup out, AGAIN!!! How many times do I have to tell you???????? I think we know what type of response that will lead to. Or it may result in no response, at all. TEXT #2: “How’s the 75 year plan working for you?” Now Paul and I have a relationship where we can jab a little with each other, all in good fun, of course. Instead of being defensive, Paul would probably type back something like, “Better than my golf game!” The point was made, but in good fun, and no offense was taken. We really do need to ‘lighten up’ people. Where does being so sensitive leave us? On the other hand, never neglect working on your own bad habits.
  • You have to be in each other’s corner.  This will come most handy in raising children because if Momma ain’t backin’ Daddy or Daddy ain’t backin’ Momma, guess who will be running the fort. Yep, you got it – Pips & Squeak! If you don’t know who Pips & Squeak are, might be time to get on Snapchat. {sip to the broken record}
  • You must want to see your spouse succeed, be healthy and happy. If they are not succeeding, healthy and happy, they are not ‘thriving’. Result – marriage cannot ‘thrive’. We’ve all heard the phrase, ‘If Momma ain’t happy, ain’t nobody happy!’ There is a reason that when you are on an airplane, they tell you to put the oxygen mask on yourself before the person beside you. If you can’t fuel Momma, you can’t fuel anybody else. As a result, miserable marriage. {gulp}
  • To be on ‘The 75 Year Plan’ or whatever that number may be for you & your spouse, you have to be on ‘THE 50 YEAR PLAN’! Notice I didn’t say 75 here! Instead I said, 50. I know what you’re thinking … another plan? Yes, another plan and more to come on that plan, later. You didn’t know this post was going to have a cliff-hanger, did you? {great! gulp}. In order to be AROUND to celebrate your 75th Anniversary or your number, requires a desire to live a long, healthy life. Those desires need to be executed with good daily choices to ensure that type of outcome. Because, you guessed it –  ‘Failing to Plan is …………. blah, blah, blah, blah, blah {gulp and get over it}

The Bottom Line: Arriving at the 24-year mark of being married, Paul and I have just had more successes in our marriage, than failure. And we have always viewed ourselves and our relationship as constant ‘works in progress’. It’s the log average, here. This boils down to expectations, choices, and the biggie … communicating. There are no guarantees that Paul and I will celebrate and be honored for 75 years of marriage, as Grams and Papa were. But one thing is certain, we our on ‘The Plan’!!!  {CHEERS}

The 75 Year Plan

For more blog posts pertaining to relationships and marriage, check out these here: Finding Time For Your Spouse / Financial Freedom #1Financial Freedom #2Having Children / 10 Truths Everyone Forgets

Tonight’s Wine – Nobilo ‘Sauvignon Blanc’ – a repeat favorite. For a review of this wine, check out this blog post, here. Or get on Snapchat and find out, along with ‘What I Eat Wednesday’, meal prepping, Intermittent Fasting and a workout { Username: tracy_hensel }

Thanks for reading!

The 75 Year Plan

Disclaimer: Beverages containing alcohol are often associated with sharing, pleasure, unwinding, and socializing. However, there are times when drinking at all or too much can be risky to you or to others. This blog post is for light-hearted sharing ONLY! If you are over the age of 21 and choose to drink, please drink responsibly and don’t drink and drive.

  
xoTracy

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12 Comments

  • Reply Lucy Ladley - Luscious Fibers

    Tracy, this blog about the journey together with our spouse is so very dear! You made my day!

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    • Reply tracyhensel

      Thank you Lucy! So nice to hear! Have a beatific day!

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  • Reply Kristin Brownell

    You are well on your way to your “75 year plan”. Paul certainly has great genes (he looks the same as he did in high school) and so do you! You are blessed to have each other. Thanks for the inspiration!

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    • Reply tracyhensel

      Thank you Kristen! Appreciate your kind words!!

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  • Reply Amy Henson

    Great post, Tracy, with some wise tips!! It so often comes down to communication; I spend much time with my couples teaching communication techniques and conflict resolution. I think, too, from what I’ve seen, is that you two also have a lot of fun together, which is so important, as well. You two are very inspiring!! Way to go!!!

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    • Reply tracyhensel

      Thank you Amy! I agree on communication – KEY! I also believe with the distractions out there, it gets pushed to the side all too often and relationships are suffering dearly for it. And yes, conflict resolution …. can’t get to resolving matters without communicating, can you. Thanks for your response and additional thoughts on this. xx

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  • Reply Heather Henderson

    My husband and I are on the 75 year plan, too! We were married at 19 (it will be 13 years in October) so we both need to make it to 94!

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    • Reply tracyhensel

      That’s great, Heather! Sounds like you’ve got the outlook it requires! Thanks for sharing! xo

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  • Reply Monica erre

    Thank you Tracy! It is always nice read you!

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    • Reply tracyhensel

      Thank you Monica!

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  • Reply Regina Lane

    Tracy, this is great. Also, we had the same hair back in the day. LOL!! 🙂

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    • Reply tracyhensel

      Thank you Regina! Yes, I am sure you did! A lot of similar comments.

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