It’s funny that I started this blog when Scarlet was 9-months-old, only because I did it to get out of a several year writing drought, and I had so much catch up to play. I had dreams and stories and fears and plenty of thoughts I should have kept to myself. I started this blog to play catch up with my heart and mind – and see if I could string them together into something cohesive and maybe even appealing. Maybe. And I started it to keep my friends and family in the loop of our adventures and misadventures, my deep, strange, and twisty writing, and my not-yet-born photography career – which then involved a brand new digital camera I didn’t know how to use and the occasional bout of pop-up flash. Man, I was a MESS. Man, I still am a mess! A hot mess.
The point is – if there is a point (?) – today is our 11th anniversary. Lucky #11! And the point is that we’re celebrating with Bruce Hornsby tickets. I mean, really. It’s almost like when we got married the Gods smiled down on us and said, “One day.. when your marriage turns the ripe young age of 11.. we will reward you with a Bruce Hornsby concert happening near you right ON YOUR ANNIVERSARY. However, since life is often confusing, we’ll also throw in opening weekend of Avengers: Endgame so have fun with that!” And we will. Those crazy Gods are funny, huh?
They also would have told us that life, and marriage, were going to get WAY harder than we had ever imagined. Well maybe they’d just say that to me. And that only going through the tough stuff – which still is unfolding/unfolds, unfolds would make the other side of the mountain top way more bathed in light and love than imaginable. It’s always still unwrapping like a gift – with a pulsing red core and aching and squeezing and growing. Like a beautiful, fluttery, hot lava gift.
I think I came here to say that I wasn’t actively writing when we got married, and for almost a year after that, so I had to do some digging to find what I was looking for. Quotes and photos from every year of our marriage. I’d like to believe that these photos and words, but much more the words, strengthen and build it like a house. Piece by piece. Heartbeat by heartache by heartbeat. Hands to hearts clasped. Let’s keep building something together. Heat and life.
“Only today is the last day to get through, and then we’re launched work-free into our insanity and all of our dreams. I love you very much.”
“It’s disgusting that that was a year ago. You can throw in a wedding, a cross country move, and a baby into one year and the year will still fly by!! I am in disbelief that the wedding was a year ago! I just remember it all like it was yesterday, and I’m sure I always will.”
“In honor of our second anniversary, I decided to read some old emails from before we were even living together, much less married. I have to quote my husband on an email where we were talking about children: “I want a girl first.” Three and a half years later, he got his wish!”
“Three years ago today I woke up, looked out the window, had a bit of an anxiety attack, ate some Froot Loops and then headed to hair and make-up. Happy Three years to everyone who walked up a mountain in Vermont to see us get married!”
I confess that I love him more today than I did four years ago. There’s always a higher. I confess I didn’t know that back in my 20’s. See, I thought love faded or turned into eventual annoyance and complacency. And I know that can and does happen, and I know I’m only four years in. However, I do know there’s an alternative. And we’re lucky. Happy Four Years.
Sometimes, it’s so hard. Just like all of the smug know-it-alls said it would be. Those same people who tell us to hug our children tight because “time goes so fast and you’ll blink and they’ll grow up.” I hug those children nearly 12 hours a day and I couldn’t possibly do it more, short of keeping them up all night, and still time will go so fast and I’ll blink and they’ll be grown. And I’ll be sad. And what will I be left with? Well, other than the knowledge that I raised two great kids into two great adults? You. You are left, standing with me.
This is what we planned.
So yes, it can be tough. I think we’re hard on each other a lot, due to stress and dreams too big to fit into a world with sometimes narrowing choices. We always dreamed BIG. We still dream big. See, we always will dream big. And I’m talking big. Maybe not fly away in a Tardis big, but as close as you can get to that. Northern lights and a place where moose and wolves co-exist in relative harmony. More Bruce Hornsby nights and tons of comments from me about how nice your a** is. These are all real. And oh, what a gift that is.
In lieu of having that big vow-renewing party we wanted to have on that same mountain top (ten year anniversary, maybe?), I will make new vows. I vow to keep seeking that higher, and to know it doesn’t ever have to stop. I vow that we will check off so many items on our dream lists. No matter the long game we’re playing, it will pay off sooner rather than later, and we will get there.
“Cassidy and I just had one of the best conversations of our married life:
Him: (stopping the car) “What is that? I see something. Maybe people?”
Me: “Let me look with my zoom lens.”
Him: “What do you see?”
Me: “MOOSE! Two MOOSE! Holy ****!”
Then we both ran out of the car to see closer.”
Cassidy will come home on Saturday – the day before our seventh anniversary. Seven year itch and all. I think it’s quite the opposite of the seven year itch – in some ways, we’re just beginning. Beginning again.
This week was our eight year anniversary. Eight is great! We had a dreamy dinner with dreamy music and dreamy presents. I was even a little nervous. It’s been a turning point for us – year seven of our marriage. What will be next?
I confess that one of my most vivid thoughts on my wedding day was this: “Oh man. Will my waist stay this way after children?” It’s the little, strange things you remember. The little, petty thoughts that stay in your head. The things that don’t really matter. So it’s ok to say it did/does matter to me, and I’m happy to say that I love my waist today, like I did then. And more for what it does:
For so long, I was stunned to find myself in the middle of a miracle. A real life miracle.
And the love I feel grows stronger, and I think yours does too. Simply. Loving each other. What else can we build? Let’s start today. Perfectly imperfect and imperfectly perfect for me. Perfect. For me. Like no other has or could. God, do I love you.
I think being married to me – with my anxiety and quirks and talking talking and messiness and hibernation mode and chaos – maybe you don’t always know that in my eyes, you’re a dream come true.
So I’m here to set the record straight. You are every bit a dream come true, and the steadiness to my rocking boat.
Dream the original dream like we used to do
Under the moonlight on a night so rare
Just say the word and I’ll take you there
I’ll take you there” — Bruce Hornsby
I’m linking up with Finish The Sentence Friday with this anniversary message. This week’s topic is “Vivid..” And there’s still plenty of time to write yours. Come link up with your spin: HERE.