Happy Anniversary to the One I Love

DSC_0329Today is our 28th wedding anniversary.

It is super hard to believe that it was 1985 when we got married. It sounds like forever ago and yet it feels like only yesterday.

As college sweethearts we were all fresh-faced, in love and completely naïve to what life had in store for us. Two kids, two houses and a cottage later, we are still together. Solidly together. But it has not always been a piece of cake; we've had our challenges, the inevitable ups and down, and yet somehow we worked through them all and have come out the other side -- stronger together.

I recognize that we are among the lucky ones.

I suppose as a kid I always assumed that life got easier as we grew up. Not sure how I came to that conclusion, I guess grown ups just seemed to have things together and made it look easy. I always aspired to be like them. Little did I know that with grown up lives come grown up responsibilities. It isn't easier -- it is just more complicated. The stakes are higher. And there is no one to fix things for you.

Raising our boys, with all their busy hands and minds,  and later endless activities --- seemed like that was going to be the most stressful time in life. Working, being a mom of two little ones, staying involved, keeping the house clean, food stocked, clothes washed, remembering to be a wife, a friend, a daughter a sister --- it all can seem overwhelming when you are in the middle of it. Especially when you are always striving to cross the next thing off your to-do-list---like I always was.

I spent many years trying to get control of things I should have just let go of. Who cares if my house is messy or dusty, or the baseboards have never been washed....are you really supposed to clean them? Who looks anyway.

I've learned the importance of slowing life down, of being present, of throwing aside the to do list when someone needs you, and in not living for tomorrow or next week. I'm learning to linger in the present and make each day count.

I am learning to appreciate the little things. Like...

Walks in the sun. Holding hands. Cuddles. A cat call (or two) when I wear something nice. Generous hugs. Smiles. Belly laughs. A kiss just because. A compliment I wasn't expecting. A "how is your day" text. Comfortable silences. The warmth of falling asleep beside the one you love on a cold dark night.

And the relief I feel from the certainty that when I am at my wit's end, my husband will take over for me--no questions asked.

I love that about him.

His little gestures of thoughtfulness and respect mean so much more to me than expensive presents ever could---finding the coffee made for the next morning, laundry folded and put away, the windows washed, the milk replaced in the refrigerator, my computer fixed, whatever I needed help with done when I get home exhausted after a late meeting. Every small thing means so much.

6 months ago when he said: "Just quit your job. I'm not worried you will find another. You will figure it out." I darn near melted.

When someone believes in you that much all things are possible.

28 years ago today I married my best friend. It continues to surprise me how much more I love him every day. Every once in a while I realize that we are not the spring chickens we once were and I try even harder not to take anything for granted. I want a lot more years with my husband, and I certainly do not want it to whir by as fast as the first 28 did.

My house might never be truly clean again. I don't cook homemade meals like I once did, at least not very often. I'm learning not to care. But I am so lucky that even on the darkest days (and there have been some lately) I have great strength by my side. Together I know we can get through whatever challenges life throws at us.

Happy Anniversary to the man I love. It is truly a joy to be your wife.