Patience and understanding are the two building blocks Lillian and Eric Geduldt used to build their marriage and last Saturday the couple celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary.
Speaking to the Athlone News from their Kewtown home, Ms Geduldt, 74, said she and Mr Geduldt, 76, met in 1964 at the Moravian Church youth group in Bridgetown which they were both members of.
As time went by the two became more fond of each other and in October that year they started dating. After three years, the couple tied the knot on December 9 1967.
Reminiscing about their wedding day, Mr Geduldt said: “She was one hour late for her own wedding!”
Ms Geduldt said the guests included many family and friends and 60 members of their youth group. “It was a huge wedding, everyone was there. I had on a white dress and he had on a black suit but these days the youngsters wear anything when they get married,” she said.
They had four children – two boys and two girls – and currently have eight grandchildren.
Asked what the key to a successful marriage is, Mr Geduldt said: “Patience. In today’s life, people need a lot of wisdom in their marriages.” Ms Geduldt said throughout the years she has always appreciated her husband’s humour and ability to make her laugh.
“He is very smart as well. I’ve always believed in serving the Lord in everything you do and everything will come right. We never believed in divorce in the olden days, we respected our vows. We sorted out any issues that we had,” she said.
Three years ago the couple went through a tough time when Ms Geduldt’s left leg was amputated due to diabetes. She is currently confined to a wheelchair. “I’ve had my walks and I’ve enjoyed my life, I am satisfied,” she said.
“Nobody does it the way she does. I appreciate her strict ways with me because it has made me a neat and tidy person – I can’t leave my clothes lying around,” said Mr Geduldt.
He added that parents should also be good role models to their children.
Ms Geduldt said that now she loves spending time with her children and grandchildren.
“I call them on a Friday and ask if they are coming to me over the weekend and they always do. I like them to be around me. We call each other every day to find out if we are all okay,” she said.
Her advice to other couples is to always work together and understand each other, and to never keep secrets.
“If you go off track, you come back again. After an argument the one who gives in is better than the one who stays quiet,” she said.
Mr Geduldt added that leadership in a marriage comes from both sides.