Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Keeping Promises

Open letter to my husband:

We first met in 1992. I didn't know what to think of you then - you were a little wild, a little crazy and really different than anyone else I'd ever met. I had just graduated from high school and had followed my love of horses to the race track... where you'd been for years. One of the few things I did know was that I liked the way you looked in those chaps...

In 1994 we started dating. I lied to my mother when she caught a glimpse of you and asked me how old you were (I swore you were only 24!)... and I convinced you to shave off that awful mustache before I introduced you to them face-to-face (I swear it took years off your looks!). And I know you haven't forgotten the introduction... it must've been shell-shocking for you to walk into a house full of 75 party guests - but trust me, it was much better meeting them when they didn't have time to grill you... I don't know why I was so sure they wouldn't give you a chance (I know they're more open-minded than that) but we were from such different worlds.

Dating you was wild and fun... and all over the place. Not just geography... not just the traipsing across provinces on a whim, but the ups & downs of figuring out whether we really wanted to be together. We were on, we were off... and then we got back "on" and didn't look back. We lived wherever we landed and just fell comfortably into being us... jumping out of planes, riding over frozen rivers... galloping over snow-covered fields. We always landed on our feet... and it didn't matter if we fell through the ice here or there, or hit furloughs hidden beneath the snow and came tumbling down off our mounts.. because all was right with the world, we were falling in love and being together was FUN.

In 1997 we married. We didn't stop playing or living life like the adventure it was to us at the time. Looking back I cringe a little at the risks we took and they way we took everything as it came. We ran off to live in another country with only $200 to our names... and the belief that everything would work out. And it did. And those two years were wonderful and carefree (for the most part) and a perfect time for us. We never had to work at being a couple did we? It just happened when we weren't looking. We trusted and we jumped... and I'm glad we did.

In 1999 we became a family and it was good. We had to make some changes but there was new fun to be had with our little man. It was harder, but really, not much changed with us... 5 years we'd been together and now we had this tiny human depending on us to do things right - which didn't seem so hard... until we found out we'd be adding another. We made some hard choices then. We walked away, for good, from the only life we'd known together... and struggled to find our footing in the "real" world.

In 2001 we bought our house and welcomed our second son. Those were both great things... but I think this was the toughest year for us. Maybe it was the famed "7 year itch" that destroys so many relationships. Maybe it was because money was so tight... or the stress of two little ones and your schedule working nights... or any number of reasons. But we just couldn't seem to find it in ourselves to play nice. This year and maybe into the one following were the hardest times in our marriage. More than once I believed "this is it, it's over". But we didn't let go. We could have walked away and we both would have felt justified... and it just would have been another marriage that didn't work, oh well. But we stayed... and we stuck it out... and we kept that promise that we'd made to each other 4 years earlier.

We made it through "the worse" ... and thank God we did, because if we hadn't, we'd never have survived to enjoy, or truly appreciate, "the better" that was to follow.

We found ourselves again. We weren't the same people that we'd been before, our life had a steadier, calmer rhythm to it. We'd both changed but we grew together... because we chose to... when we could have walked away.

And in 2006, we completed our little family with that beautiful baby girl I never thought we'd have. From where I'm sitting, these past few years have been the happiest and best we've ever had.

You joke all the time when we recall how long it's been and fast time has flown by... "I can't believe you've stuck it out this long" or "put up with me this long". And I always want to toss back "Me Neither!" (with a grin)... but you've got to know it's not true....

There are things about you that annoy the hell out of me and make me want to scream or tear my hair out in frustration. Just like a I know there are things I do or say that make you feel like throwing something... but that what keeps our marriage from being boring. We have passion... and I don't just mean the reason we've added 3 to world's population... we light sparks off each other sometimes without even trying. Aries & Sagittarius.... Horse & Tiger.... we definitely belong... but it'll never be boring. We're different in so many ways... but our cores still ring in harmony. It's solid.

And I look forward to the sparks the next 12 years will bring.

Happy Anniversary Love.

2 comments:

familyandthesuburbs said...

Happy Anniversary ... that was just beautiful to read ...

Naomi said...

What an amazing post! Thanks for sharing it with us! Happy Anniversary!