It’s that time of year when I get to say we used to look like this:
And now we look like this:
Still smiling like goons.
Today marks the end of our first decade together. 10 years ago we set out on a snowy morning towards a church in Hove. Family and friends waited in the freezing cold to watch us say/cry to each other that this was it. The end of two separate stories. The start of another story together.
All the way through our very short engagement I had the image in my mind of us in a waiting room, one side made up of glass. Through that glass we could see out across a new world, hills, valleys, forests, mountains, rivers and lakes stretched out before us. The room had two doors. One back to the world we had come from and one forward into this new one. The forward door had a time lock on it counting down to December 19th 2009.
On that day 10 years ago we made big promises to each other as we opened the door to the future. For better or worse. Richer or poorer. In sickness and in health we would love and be for each other. We gave ourselves to each other. All that we have. For the other. We stepped through the door and entered this new land.
And what a land it has been. Full of wonder, sunlight streaming down, full of laughing, hoping and dreaming as we’ve walked through it together. And full of raging storms, endless fog, trudging weary moments. Full of waiting for each other when it got too hard, full of being joined by two small companions in the journey.
The land feels deeper and more real the more we have meandered through it together. The more we explore, the more we see how big it is. The more we journey together the more we see the depths and richness of each other.
I love this companion of mine. I am in awe of how we were joined together all those years ago. I am amazed that out of situations of lack and little hope that his hand found its way into mine. I am so deeply grateful for the ways journeying with him has changed me. I love his influence on my life, the ways he cares and encourages me to flourish.
I love his generous caring heart. I love his bouncy brain which loves new things and I love his deep need for routine and the safety of home. I love the complexity which makes him him. I love the way he helps make us more than the sum of just one plus one. I love his ridiculous sense of humour. I love his warmth, his optimism and his beautiful face.
I love that we are working on this life together. I love being team with him and I’m still in for winning the fight to be for each other. I feel like I’ve benefitted enormously from his energy in helping me own my voice, be more who I am each day and honouring me for who I am. I hope I do some of the same for him.
I love that our Maker brought us together, I have no other explanation for the bizarre way we met and the ways love was born. I love, and know, that our Maker has helped us love and hold on to each other in the ups and downs of these years.
I could say more but this is probably enough for you to get the idea that I’m very grateful for the last decade of our lives together and immensely glad of the next one ahead of us.
I’ll leave you with a somewhat left field choice of song to sum up my feelings at the moment. Teo Torriatte by Queen. It’s a song I’ve been replaying over and over again this year. It’s last chorus pretty much sums up all I feel.
“Let us cling together as the years go by, oh my love my love, in the quiet of the night, let our candle always burn, let us never lose the lessons we have learnt”.
Lots of the last few years have felt like clinging on in the quiet of the night and I think we are better for it. This song also has big wondrous loud choruses which express that the clinging sung about is full of joy and gladness. I too am full of joy and gladness because of the last 10 years of being married to my favourite and best. So raise your glasses to the lovely husbandface and here’s to the next 10 years.
Full disclosure: We also irritate each other, get grumpy, still have no idea how to manage or indeed have conflict and could do with many lessons on how to communicate. But he’s mine and I’m his and onward we go.