Twenty years ago. You were my hero. My best friend. I didn’t think you’d like me like *that*. The high school senior; student of your mother. You teased me. Encouraged me. You couldn’t possibly like me.
Nervously, you ask. Would you…could we…I said yes, with condition. You amazingly, still pursued. Always encouraging. Patiently waiting.
They told you I was too young. They told you that I was the wrong person for you. They told you that it wouldn’t last. We didn’t listen. Secret plans were made. Dress was rent. Suit bought. In a simple ceremony with three of our closest friends, you and I became WE.
Promise to love. To Cherish. To honor. To encourage. To help one another grow in our faith. To be faithful. ‘Til death do us part. Words that would remind us during hard times to not quit.
On this day I didn’t know what the future would look like. I didn’t care. I was in the moment. Your wife. My forever gift. Years went by and we became a family. One. Two. Three. By the end of 10 years we were five. Houses bought. Sold. Jobs left. Business started. Life changed. Our differences became harder. We wanted to quit. Silent determination to not quit.
More changes. Death. Your business. Your father. Our church. Our identities. My father. My sanity. Flee. We wanted to flee. Far away. Still we stayed. Together. Holding firmly to the “”til death do us part.”
When did challenging become a bump? When did the struggle become a quiet resistance? When did life become harder and love easier? We could have quit. We could have been a statistic. We could have found more compatible companions. But, as we are quietly celebrating our 20th anniversary this scripture comes to my mind.
…but I found him whom my soul loveth:
(Song of Solomon 3:4, KJV)
Yes. The road could have been easier. The days sweeter. The moments delightful. But, we would have missed this. The joining of our souls. The moments of completeness as we worship and pray together. The moments where I feel your spirit whisper to mine. After 20 years of life. THIS was worth every moment. Every tear. Every sorrow. To be one with the one my soul loves. There is no greater joy in the world.
Happy Anniversary! I love you my friend, my husband, my love.