It's been 11 years since we said "i do" in front of a small group of family friends. eleven years since we became one. eleven years since we promised each other and the heavens above that we were ready. ready to take on this world.
do you laugh sometimes when you think, how very naive we were? when the words slipped off our lips so easily that for better or worse, rich or poor, sick and health, we would be bound, we didn't know, did we. how very true those vows would become.
it would seem long, eleven years, to some people. nowadays marriages don't last. but it seems to me, that eleven years is a short time to trudge through all that we have conquered.
when our sweet baby eli was put to rest, i wasn't sure even i, myself, would make it through. marriages that suffer stillbirth or child loss are at an 80% divorce rate, but i guess no one told us that. we had only each other to cry with, to hold on to. and our sweet daughter to remind us that life must go on.
we've dealt with the sickness of cancers, which puts most marriages to an astounding test. we passed it with a lot of faith and support from each other and those around us. we've become poorer due to medical expenses, drowing in bills. but we kept our heads above water when the donations came in from friends and family and people who didn't even know us, that were touched by your story. You came home from surgeries and experimental bouts of chemotherapy and headed in to work to keep your paychecks coming for our little family. i remember begging you to stay home, but you needed to go. you needed it for you, and i hated and loved you for it anyway. you always were my captain awesome.
but here we are, eleven years to the day, and those vows have come round and round. we are so very rich in our blessings from above through friends and loved ones. we are better, for all that we have done. we are healthier in our lifestyle choices and healthier in our faith and healthier in our lives by separating from the people and feelings that were leaking toxicity into our lives. we are STRONGER than we ever were before, and yet we are still weaker than we will be next year, and the year after that, and the year after that.
i didnt put expectations on our life together other than we were doing it together. i knew that in real life, our wedding days magically lead to "happy ever after". I knew we would have to work every day to keep it together. i knew there would be toilet seats to put down, and hair in the sink, and socks on the floor and things not put away. I knew there would be arguments and fights and disagreements on who was right or wrong. I just never knew that sometimes it could be so very very hard. and i never knew that it could be so very very dark. and i never knew that babies died no matter how much you prayed and cancer came to young men even though theyre daddies and husbands and wonderful, and people could be so hateful, ungodly, vicious, and mean.
i just never knew.
but i do now.
and i also know that with you by my side,
i can make it through anything.
thank you for being my husband,
in better and worse, in sickness and health,
in scraping by or poorer ;), in drama and calm,
in hypocondria and sleep,
in OCD and freaking out,
in stray pets brought home and sonic happy hours on the card,
till death do us part.
(unless i go first, then im TOTALLY haunting you...)