We have been married for half of our lives. Half. Of our lives. Twenty-one years.
First off, we were twenty-one when we were married. Just twenty-one, as in, two weeks or less after our twenty-first birthdays (we were born three days apart). We were incredibly young and emphatically certain that this was forever.
I can't say the past twenty-one years have been all hand-holding and loving adoration. We had some rocky months ... years. One thing never failed through it all - love. No matter how angry, frustrated, or just plain done we were with each other, we loved each other. I think it was because we love each other so deeply that we feel so hurt by the other or so badly for hurting the other.
Half of our lives. Twenty-one years.
Our first twenty-one years of life conspired to put each of us just where we needed to be, when we needed to be there, in order to meet and fall in love with each other.
The second twenty-one years of our lives saw us through the loss of our first baby, the birth of five healthy babies, and the loss of twins. They gifted us many good memories filled with love, laughter, chaos, and myriad blessings. They challenged us with financial difficulties, job changes, and multiple diagnoses for children and myself that shape our daily lives. They brought us to today.
Today, I love my husband exponentially more than the day I married him. He is now not merely my best friend, lover, and life partner, but he is the father of our children.
He is the man who went along with all of my out-of-the-box parenting decisions from co-sleeping and triandem nursing to homebirthing and homeschooling, and did so trusting that I was making the best decisions for our family.
He continues to love me no matter how disabled I am, how much I weigh, or how much I struggle to get through each day. He still makes me laugh every day.
Tonight, our child-free celebration begins. And, as it would happen, will end within twenty-four hours due to impending snow. We're hoping for at least one hour for each year of marriage.
Here's to the next twenty-one years!