Being married for 28 years is a milestone that few Americans will ever see. Marriage longevity is a rare thing, indeed. And while 28 years is not normally a milestone greeted with grandiose celebration, such overtures generally reserved for years divisible by 5, this one has a special connotation for me and my wife, Sharon. We were married at the age of 28, so this marks the point where we have been married exactly half of our lives. We are the same age, being born a mere 12 days apart.
So I decided that a celebration of some sort was in order, and decided a trip to Las Vegas would be just the ticket to commemorate the achievement.
Why Vegas? Well, I could say that with all the wedding chapels and the attitude in Vegas that marriage is about as lasting as the hangover from the previous night’s drunken binge that brought the couple together, what better place to dance a victory dance in support of marriage could one possible find?
Or I could say that this is an in your face to President Obama for his unkind remarks about the city that have caused so much job loss and convention rescheduling that the city needed my tourism dollars.
But the truth is, this 4 day celebration is simply about us. Me and Sharon. And the best half of my life.
And there were times I doubted that we would make it this far. Not because of marital problems, far from it. In 28 years, we have never had an argument. Not one. Nada. (And for those that know us, Sharon will confirm this.)
No, several years ago, back in 1992, Sharon was diagnosed with breast cancer. We had a 3 year old daughter and a 1 year old son. And we were facing one of the most terrifying events I could possibly imagine. Sure, we had our cry, our own, private pity party. Who wouldn’t?
But then, something amazing and miraculous happened. Sharon decided that, with God’s help, she would beat this. In fact, that she had already beaten it and the medical procedures yet to come were merely formalities.
And beat it she did.
The first time.
Then she was diagnosed a few years later with breast cancer again. Not a recurrence of the first one. Oh, nothing so simple. This was a different type of cancer. A far more aggressive one that the doctor was sure had already spread. He gave us little hope. Sharon managed the same attitude and faith as the first round with this cancer. And the news after surgery astonished the doctor. It had not spread, and they were able to get it all.
And then came round three. And this was not a repeat of the first two. Another new occurrence. And one that the biopsy showed to be only pre-cancer, but the doctors recommended surgery immediately.
And it was worse than they had thought, but surgery was able to completely remove the cancer.
And she has been cancer free for the last 15 years.
But anyone familiar with breast cancer knows the scars it leaves are both physical and, mostly, mental.
As we embarked on the beginning leg of our anniversary celebration, Richmond’s Airport was our departure point. And this was our first flight since the Obama Administration began the use of the “body” scanners and “enhanced” groping. We were both apprehensive, but Sharon, even more than I. Understandably.
I went through the “naked” scanner first after removing my shoes, belt and everything in my pockets. Even tissues, they said.
I was instructed to place my feet on the yellow footprints and wait, as the TSA goon asked for a co-worker to pass him a pair of extra large gloves. That was a bit disconcerting.
But I was allowed to pass without further debasement.
And as I was putting my shoes, belt and belongings back together, I watched in helpless horror as my wife was publicly sexually assaulted in front of the body scanner. And she let them know before she was scanned that she was a breast cancer survivor.
You can’t imagine the emotions going through my head as I watched this TSA woman squeeze and probe by wife’s breasts in full view of everyone in the airport. And the rest of the male TSA workers looked on with what I can only describe as a perverse interest.
But what made my heart sink to my feet was the look of helplessness and despair on Sharon’s face. A look that I had not seen since the first devastating diagnosis back in 1992. The look said “help me” in the unspoken telepathic connection that comes with 28 years of living as one. I was in empathy overload, doing my best not to let the rising wave of rage overtake me and make me lash out violently, knowing full well the ramifications of such actions.
I just gritted my teeth, frustrated.
After seeing this, I have resolved not to fly again until this senseless foolishness comes to an end. This administration has absolutely no respect for citizens, their dignity or the ordeals they have been through. Obama refuses to admit that middle aged breast cancer survivors named Sharon are not the enemy. Yet in the interest of political correctness, they are victimized as surely as the terrorists themselves were the ones groping my wife, causing a look on her face that I had hoped to never again be forced to endure.
I have also resolved that I will still celebrate my 28th anniversary, and let neither the Terrorists nor the Obama Administration, who are now synonymous in my opinion, darken our well deserved time together.
And yes, I know we must go through this one more time to get back home. And I am not looking forward to that.
And I will make it a point to post some positive posts this week to prove that enemies, foreign and domestic, will not prevail.
But at this point, the Domestic terrorists all seem to wear TSA insignias.