Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Twenty Six Years

I asked him this morning if it was all worth it and he assured me that it was. As we stood there in our kitchen, waiting for coffee to brew, planning the day and listening to our grandson jabber in the background...we both agreed that arriving at this place was worth the struggle to get here. 

We celebrate this day every year, almost more than our wedding anniversary. It is the anniversary of the day we met and, today marks 26 years. The wedding was simply a formality. The real magic happened 7 months earlier on that cold December night when the stars aligned and we saw each other for the first time. As I stood there hugging him this morning, all of it came flooding back into my mind. 26 years. It's never been boring, that's for sure and the hard times have only made us love each other more. 

This past year has been the hardest. The. Hardest. But, it has also been filled with the most growth, the most hope, and the most love. Forgiveness opens up so many avenues to the real stuff, the good stuff. Love on a whole other level. We've had to get to know each other all over again and are finding out that we really really like each other. Like total bff's. The legit kind that don't leave each other when things get tough. The kind that stay through all the ugly things. The kind that know on the other side of all that struggle and pain is something worth fighting for. 

Before we even said our marriage vows, we promised each other that we were in it for the long haul. We sat in an old beat-up Chevy truck out on a back country road and pledged our eternal devotion. I mean, things don't get much more devout and serious than that. There's hardly a more sacred space than the cab of an old truck. Believe me, I know. 

I have learned so much this year about life. I've lost and grieved and wept more than I thought was humanly possible and, I'm a crier.  I've let go of things that I thought I couldn't live without and, here I am...still living. It occurs to me over and over what Dorothy said, "“If I ever go looking for my heart's desire again, I won't look any further than my own back yard. Because if it isn't there, I never really lost it to begin with." 

We may have gotten lost along the way but we found our way back. We found our way back to the most beautiful place. I don't think either of us would choose to go through the suffering part again but, we are aware of the growth that happened because of it. We both acknowledge that the pain is what made us stronger (I could insert a fitness metaphor here but, I'll spare you). 

I don't know what the future holds for us but, I know that we can handle whatever comes our way...together. 

Today won't be filled with wine and roses. It's more of a farm-work, puppy-play, grand baby, book-reading, maybe-we'll-take-a-nap kind of thing going on around here and, I can't think of anything more sweet. 

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