This I know ten years later,

we laugh more.

We celebrated ten years of marriage last month, commencing a high season of feasting, reflection, and arguments over a shared phone charger.

TEN YEARS!!!

It’s become our battle cry of late. Our tongue in chcek response to the massive pieces of humanity keeping our marriage from being otherwise perfect.

We’re laughing a lot at our ability to take ourselves ridiculously serious, our brokenness, our aptitude for small-ness after all these years of growth. 

We got married young. Now, granted, one hundred and fifty years ago I would have had four children and be running a farm by 22, but in 2003, we were young in life.

Yet,  it was the new millennium!, This is America! and with our hard-earned LIBERAL ARTS DEGREES! we were confident our intellect and ability to think and write critically could more than compensate for any lack of relational experience. 

(Maybe we weren’t laughing then, but surely someone was…)

We were so young, we had to learn to trust the other with vulnerabilities we barely knew about, while facing the new reality of spending a full paycheck…on tires.

It got ugly.

Who was this person  I loved but seemed a constant threat to my ease, comfort, autonomy, and Large Selfish Dreams for My Life? (By the way, Spouses have nothing on children in this category)

We’ve weathered some storms, some change, some surprises, new jobs, new degrees, new homes, new babies. We’ve felt so much love it hurts and been mystified at the heavy silence possible between two overly-verbose people. We learned to ask for help early on, and learned to say sorry even earlier. And somewhere along the way, taking more years than it should have,  I stopped confusing Travis being “for” me, with Travis being “like” me. Funny, how that changed so much, and increased the laughter.

We got married on June 28, 2003 surrounded by hundreds of our closest friends. I will never have that many close friends again.  I currently have three. There was a stretch Hummer, a original arrangement of the Les Miserables finale, Puerto Rican cuisine, and almost a roasted pig (Downtown Marriot said no.)

Travis’s dad married us in a long priestly robe, not the norm for our church tradition, but we were classing it up for this event (read: Stretch Hummer). The ceremony was beautiful but mainly I  remember this: he looked at each one of us and  told us the other was our gift from God.

I felt that then, and believed it with my whole off-the-rack Vera Wang clothed self.

But only a fraction of how I believe it now.

This I know ten years later, I am so grateful for what’s behind us and even more grateful to keep moving  forward, solitary phone charger and all.

TEN YEARS!

 

The Truth About…Summer

Whenever someone asks “How’s summer going?” I respond the same way: “Good, I just haven’t found our rhythm yet.”

I think I need to accept that this is our rhythm. I had forgotten how much stuff an eight month old required and that her ability to endure any activity is equal to her age in months. She lasts eight minutes in the pool, eight minutes in the high chair, eight minutes in the shopping cart, eight minutes in the stroller. She  does still loves the bjorn…dangling there, high and seemingly independent. But I have to be moving forward, making progress. She is not fooled by any form of bounce in place.

The older girls are learning the joy of boredom and I’m learning the discipline of letting them discover it.  Reading children’s literature written pre-1980’s helps – stories of children playing with rocks and dirt, etc.  It’s true.  If I leave them alone long enough, they start creating and playing and building and then fighting and crying. There’s an ebb and flow. A rhythm.

This afternoon  I laid down on the living room floor to let Leila crawl all over me and Sophia and Olivia were next to me and we laughed and stared at the ceiling and felt for just a moment what it’s like to all be the same height.

Summer.