Through chronic illness, miscarriages, infertility, business failures, surgeries and recoveries, moves, seasons of writing where words outrank housekeeping in my priorities, family health needs, extream latex allergy that often dictates our plans, six strokes, rigors of therapy life, and the ongoing realities of living with a no-longer-driving, brain injured spouse with PTSD, depression, compulsive spending, and short term memory loss, you have remained faithful.
Though the grit-our-teeth and stay-together seasons when we stayed only because of the promise we made to God, thank you for staying, for trying, for doing, for persevering, for providing! For acting out love when it was purely a decision and not a feeling or emotion.
Through the joyful blessed seasons when feelings of love abound, thank you too. Winking. The wedding of my dreams. Opening my eyes to new places and experience. All the sushi! ;) Waves lapping. Sea otters (and otter earrings). Bears. Feeding geese (and "not feeding" squirrels). Stocky. Sterling. Butterflies. RVing. Tickle fights. Pulling just a few long hairs. The births of three miracle babies (and fighting so hard with me to get them here). Parenting adventures that caused us stress at the time but now are woven into the laughter that is our family's unique collection of stories. Learning to appreciate each other's parenting strengths. Carving train track. Flying kites. Providing for the kids and I to enjoy a decade of home education together 24/7. Checking to see if things in the fridge were available or science experiments for school. Watching these children grow and prepare for their futures. All the driving you do to provide for us all.
Always making God a priority in our schedules, plans and lives. Not giving up without finding the church that meets our needs in each season of life.
A sweet first home. The fish pond you dug by hand. Weekends spent choosing fish. A move to a beautiful, big second home in a neighborhood beyond anything I ever dared hope for. Steady jobs and an amazing work ethic. Being proud to introduce me to your co-workers. Medical provision. Avocados. Roses (the plants, the hole digging and planting, the yard space dedicated to my garden, and the occasional surprises delivered to our front door or carried home in your own hands).
|I wrote the above sentence BEFORE you totally surprised me with two dozen roses for 24 years this weekend! Thank you!|
And then a surprise dinner date too!
Family photos, trips, memories. Meals around our table with the t.v. turned off. Chocolate. Gummy worms. Supporting my latest eating adventure, be it a new diet or a Pinterest recipe.
Reading together. "Potty Paper" folds. God's transportation provisions you have obtained for us, starting with Kermie and Flower, all the way to Lander. Dressing up and Date Nights. Relaxing on Lazy Saturdays with no plans. Grocery Outlet and Sam's Club specials. Monterrey. Plenty of fresh fruit.
Artichokes. Birds. Orchids. Stanford getaways. Books and an introduction to with Christian publication market. Wedding Rings and the Mediterranean Sea. Hot Air balloons. Lake Tahoe. Computers and your technological cutting edge and know how! Learning to paint together.
Neighborhood walks. Unexpected texts, email or phone calls in the middle of the day. B12. Pushing for therapy, then bringing me home from the hospital when the doctors were ready to write me off and ship me to a nursing home. Bringing our kids back home. Domain names. Making me laugh at every doctor's appointment, even when you are feeling stressed. Belting out Amy Grant songs all the way to CBD that year. Getting safely over the pass in that blinding blizzard. The hills up and down all around that CBD expo and the fun we had with my wheelchair. Underground Atlanta. Cherry tomatoes. Mowed lawns. Bills paid. "Warming the covers". Hitting the snooze alarm for 9 minutes to cuddle. Handing me your teddy bear (who smells like you!) when you need to actually get out of bed.
For everything, THANK YOU! Happy anniversary, my love.
In the hospital you frequently would say, "We will get through this. We will figure this out. We are..." Then you would wait for me to fill in the words "a team".
I am blessed to be your partner. Thank you for being mine.