Dear Husband: after nine years

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This day, as was the past eight consecutive June elevenths, is always my favorite day. There is no party to plan or formal celebration. Unless this date falls on a weekend, I can count on you working this day. The great majority of our friends and family won't necessarily remember this date of significance, nor will they send cards or money or gifts like birthdays usually encourage. Today, with the exception of that very first June eleventh, has always been celebrated between the two of us; usually in a restaurant that, to us, is uncharted territory...never going to the same place twice, no matter how amazing it was. A restaurant that sometimes costs us more than our weekly grocery bill. But I never feel guilty about that. Because that's "our thing".

Every year you do the whole card thing, but I know that's not how you'd like to show love. I know you probably hate it and dread it, but know that I know that while you're never comfortable expressing your love in words or in written form, that I cherish the way you "don't have a way with words" as you say. I love it.

I know you're better, so much better than me, at showing love through doing. For example, I felt so loved because of how you selflessly and while extremely exhausted, you fixed up the laundry room this past weekend. I know it wasn't what you wanted to do, but yet you were determined to do so because you love me. You love me so much and so well.

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Our love may not look like it did originally. We don't always look at one another with starry eyes or get butterfly-filled tummies when we are in each other's presence. What we do have, is better. What we have is far past the surface of where we began. What we have is entrenched, entwined, embedded...we have made this massive root system and from it has come something more beautiful than most of the world will ever know. It's an forever establishment, solidified by both individual and collective relationships with our Creator. We will never have that picture perfect marriage, but I never want that anyway. I never want to be one of those couples who "never fight" because most of those marriages never last. I love that you have your way and I have mine and then sometimes we find that same exact path without meaning to. That's marriage, that's give and take, in and out, up and down, running and falling, you and me.

So may this be the happiest of June elevenths. The happiest because every year we grow both deeper and higher. The happiest because we have been given another life to symbolize both our love and our marriage and the graciousness of our God. How gracious He is to allow us this privilege once again. The happiest because the unexpected happened, and we are settling in our forever home. Our dream in tangible form. Our dream. Not yours. Not mine. But ours.

And may we never take this day for granted. This day is the most beautiful, meaningful day of every year.

You. Me. Us. We. Always.

Love, Alicia

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