19 Years and Counting...

Our anniversary.  Every year on August 2nd we toast another year together.  This year we ran away to the city for a night alone.  Nothing extravagant.  Just long enough to catch our breath and soak in each other's presence.  I've learned that intentionality does wonders for our intimacy level, our connectedness.  It is high priority in our relationship.  No distractions.  No cell phones.  No outsiders.  Only us.  Alone.  Focused on us.

Birthdays and anniversaries they cut me to deep.  Bring me to my core and have a way of  focusing my attention to the hands of time that can so often be ignored in the daily living.  And after nineteen years there is more than enough to reflect on.  This year as we sat at dinner we walked through our marriage, year by year, season by season.  Recalling the beginning was not easy.  Not only because it was a LONG time ago but because there were struggles.  Some really hard stuff.  Two young adults, well barely adults, navigating life together after being individuals and all with the unexpected surprise of parent hood.  We tried college together.  Lived with roommates.  Lived away from our families with no support system.  Did not have any married friends or friends with children.  We worked various jobs to make ends meet.  We had secrets.  There was shame.  A bout with cancer.  Apartment living.  Graduations.  House purchasing.  Moving across state.  More babies.  Bankruptcy.  Cross country moves.  Finding church.  Meeting God.  A new career.  Grad school.  Growing children.  Two people growing apart and together.  All the late nights, early mornings, sleepless unknowns and so much in-between.  A season for everything.  Confessions.  Mistakes.  Grace, loads of grace.  Self discovery and therapy.  Life groups.  Different churches.  New friends.  Learning family dynamics and walking the road to balance.  If there really is such a thing.

All that to say, these nineteen years have been full.  Full of life lived.  Sometimes well and other times not so well.  Yet, day in and day out we have chosen each other.  Most of the time.  And when we haven't we've learned better.  There has been unbecoming and selflessness.  It has been hard.  There are days when I don't know where the "yes" comes from.  Someplace other worldly for sure.  Thank God for that.  Nights where rolling over and staying on my side would have been easier.  When not talking is the choice.  Not one I'm proud of but hey, I'm still learning new ways.  We're always learning and that means we're still choosing each other.

This practice of remembering and sharing and talking together was interesting.  A new to us tradition and I must say I found it rather insightful.  In listening to what Jared recalled, what was important, noteworthy or challenging from his perspective was soothing.  Maybe that's not the proper word choice but that is what I felt in the moment.  Peaceful.  Like we had possibly found our rhythm then and there in the conversation and we were present and wholly together.  I hope we have nineteen more years and then some to continue to remember.  Together.  Because together is always better.

And that leads me to some perspective into the way he loves me.  Let it be said here, I am not a diamond or bling type of girl.  A plane ticket, surprise adventure, a night away at a hotel, a meal out, those speak to my soul.  I am thankful that after twenty plus years together that I have learned to recognize the small, everyday ways he loves me.  Not always in the grand gestures, because there are times more often than not that time or money don't allow for those.  But starting the coffee in the morning.  Picking up his laundry off the bedroom floor.  Making the bed EVERY day.  Offering to run by the market on his way home if I am in need of a forgotten ingredient.  Filling my vehicle up with gas when I've let it run on empty.  Ordering take away when he knows I'm too tired to cook.  Saying yes to hikes or other various nature related activities because he knows how much I love nature. Taking care of carpool duties at night.  His servant's heart screams love to me in so many ways.  I don't know that I recognized them for what they were in the beginning but I am trying to do so now.  On the daily.  Because I need grace.  Our marriage needs grace.  And because I can always do better.   The small, the everyday and the grand gestures.  I hope I am able to spend the rest of my life showing him I believe that.

So that is what all this reflecting has done for me.  I pause.  I still myself and remember.  Celebrate and learn.  Commit to loving lavishly.  Because that is better for our us.  For me.  So here's to ninety more years together Husband Jared, the first nineteen have been oh so good!  

0 Response to "19 Years and Counting..."

Post a Comment