Blackjack Twenty-One

Photo source: Caltiva Creatividad
Photo source: Caltiva Creatividad

Deep breath… cold sweat.  You have a 9 facing up, and a 7 facing down… What to do, what to do?! Experience dictates that you should always hold at 16.  Always hold at 16.  Statistically speaking, your hand will bust if you take another card.

Feeling lucky… 

Hit me,” you say as you swipe your fingers across the green felt-covered table, taking a chance.

Not sure if you’re making the right decision… Kenny Rogers’ song lyrics “you gotta know when to hold ‘em, know when to fold ‘em… know when to walk away… know when to run” plays like a record in your mind.


The dealer pulls a card, flips and lays it face-up for all to see.  With great anticipation, you watch as he lays a five.  A five!  Yup!

Twenty-one, Blackjack,” you say excitedly, exposing all your cards and sharing the great news with everyone at your table.

Twenty one.

Twenty one!

Twenty-One…Two words that clearly articulate that you just beat the dealer. And, beating the dealer feels really good!



Twenty-one years ago, my then fiance and I made a bet on life as we walked down the aisle to publicly say “I DO.”  Looking back, we were just kids. We didn’t really know the rules of the game. Heck, we were barely past the legal drinking age!

Twenty-two and saying "I do!"
Twenty-two and saying “I do!”

Celebrating our 21st anniversary has been a huge milestone. Over the past 21 years, we’ve overcome fertility issues, earned a college degree, bought and sold a few houses, held multiple careers, brought two children into the world, experienced the death of a parent, lived through the separation from an entire side of a family, experienced financial struggles, overcame gay bullying issues, embraced a free-spirited daughter, and questioned our faith.

We’ve learned the importance of honesty…

…even when the truth hurts.

We’ve learned about not spending more than we earn…

…both in terms of money and calories.

We’ve learned that while we are great together…

…we have to stand strong independently.

We’ve listened to our own truth…

…even when those around us thought we were making crazy decisions.

I guess it’s kind of like holding a 9 and a 7 when playing Blackjack… everyone tells you to hold. Every once in a while you decide to take the risk – and it pays off.


As we enter our 22nd year, we are feeling pretty good about our hand. We have a set of Kings. We have faith in each other, and we know we’ve got this thang!

With love, experience, trust, and proven tenacity, we know we’ll make it!  Side-by-side, holding hands, we decide to double down – betting the house, and telling the dealer to “hit us good” for the next 21.

What bets have you made in life that have paid off richly?!

Take time to celebrate your wins today!


© 2013, The Musing Maven, all rights reserved.


  1. Happy anniversary. I’ve only been married a little over 2 years and I hope that when the 21st anniversary comes around I/we too will have as beautiful a story to tell. Loved the metaphor of Black Jack and by the way, you were one beautiful bride.


    1. Ah, Marina my friend! Thanks for the kind words. I look forward to plugging back in to your blog when you are back “on line”. Peace to you during your much needed Sabbatical!


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