Eight whole years married. 8 years ago on this day I woke up, after very little sleep (I’ll blame the pre-wedding giggles that overtook me and my bridesmaids at 2 am), and realized I was on the brink of something wonderful.
Today I woke up to before any kids (they are sleeper-inners!), with just a little more sleep than what I got that night before my wedding, and didn’t really think that today would hold much wonder. Not that today is going to be bad, and in fact, I am very much looking forward to the celebrations that today will bring for Ben and I – but it’s a pretty ordinary Tuesday in June. Especially with 2 little ones. Their needs, demands and routines don’t leave much room for the wonder that comes on a day like a wedding day.
But, on a day like today – eight years into the making of this marriage – I spend more time thinking about our wedding, and all of the days that have followed since. And although not every single one can be as full of incredible moments as that first, there truly is wonder in so many of the days that have come after.
That first day is forever imprinted in my memory, as I hope your wedding is too, if you’re married. Oh how wonderful and incredible that day was – to spend with everyone we love so dearly – and to make vows to the one I love so dearly. To laugh, and cry. To eat, drink and dance. And to submit ourselves to the One who loves us so dearly.
But so many of the days that have followed are also etched in my mind. Obviously the big ones – like the birth of our children, the day we bought our first house, the first days of our many jobs, and the moves we’ve made – but also the days that just held ordinary events. The days we’ve spent on road trips, eating Spitz and talking. The times we’ve tried to eat healthy, but one of us really wants to go get an ice cream cone. The times one of us has gotten SO frustrated at the other for doing the same annoying thing over and over…and over again. The times we would rock paper scissors over who had to do a mundane chore or task. The time our basement apartment flooded (ok, so that day wasn’t so ordinary). The days we’ve played Ultimate Frisbee. The many nights we’ve prayed together before falling asleep. And as I reflect today on what it means to be eight years married, that word “wonder” keeps swirling around in my head.
It is wonder-full to do the ordinary with someone that you love. It’s wonder-full to know there is someone who knows you so deeply and has spent so many days doing life by your side. It’s wonder-full to know that whatever comes your way, you won’t be facing it alone. And it’s wonder-full to know that I am who I am today, because I have chosen to do life with someone else, and inevitably that shapes who you become. Just stop and think about that. Isn’t that amazing? That fact is filled with wonder.
I am proud to be 8 years into this. It’s not a memorable milestone. I’m not even sure when we’re old and gray if we’ll even remember the 8 year marker. But today, it means something. Being a wife is not a task to be taken lightly, and truthfully, it’s not a task I would succeed at were it not for God’s grace. And that – that is the most wonder-filled fact of all.
So to Benj,
Happy EIGHT years. I can still remember the days even before I started counting the days. The days before we were married – when we had no idea what these years would bring. They’ve been pretty good to us haven’t they?
I don’t have much to say to you today that I haven’t said so many times before, but I did want us to remember that this year was by no means an easy one for us. Man did we ever have a rough patch in there didn’t we? Those days sucked. But I love that even in those moments where we were looking at each other with such anger and weariness, we both knew that there was no despair. We were burnt out from our jobs, weary from months of overworking and under-resting, and for a little while in there put some blinders on to what it meant to be servants to one another. But deep deep down we knew that our love and commitment to each other was far stronger than any circumstances that were causing us strife. And that is the kind of thing I mean when I talk about the wonder that fills our marriage. That we are together through the great and the terrible. And yes – I am so thankful to be through that time, and thankful for friends and family that were loving enough to pray for us, but gracious enough to know it wasn’t a dire situation and to treat us with love – but I truly am also thankful for the days where it seemed like we were going to argue one.more.time. Even then I could see how in love I was with you. You so often chose humility and grace and loved me in times when I know I didn’t deserve it. And on days when I didn’t want to show you love, those were the times when God would nudge me and remind me that this is exactly why we made vows to each other and washed each other’s feet.
And oh how I love our ordinary, but wonder-filled days. I love sharing a knowing glance across the dinner table when Ellie does something SO RIDICULOUSLY CUTE we can hardly stand it. I love playing cribbage with you, even though winning all the time gets a little old 🙂 I love when all four of us climb into our bed and have a slow start to the morning. I DON’T love our monthly budget meetings, but hey – you can’t love everything about each day now can you?
You are my partner, and I couldn’t ask for a better one to look for wonder with.
I love you.