Yesterday we celebrated our 9 1/2 year anniversary. Yes, we celebrated half anniversary's and half birthday's around here. Why not? We also just so happened to find ourselves reminiscing down memory lane as I apparently lost all of Sabrina and Malachi's birthday pictures from last year (don't worry, grandma has come to the rescue with pictures). So I found myself digging through picture files, just in case and coming across pictures I haven't looked at in years. Pictures where you could just see the young love in our eyes. Pictures that reminded me of the days before we were married and all we thought we needed was each other and we could conquer the world. We just NEEDED to be together! Pictures of our first year together and what a special time that was, just the two of us in our little home, figuring life out together. Again, you could still just see that we adored each other!
Then I began to wonder, do we still have that same look? Somewhere in the space of the last nine and a half years, something has changed. That carefree, love can accomplish anything attitude has somehow diminished. We have everyday stresses, a mortgage, bills, 4 children to raise, a career to build. We certainly don't look the same way we did back then. The gray hairs are slowly becoming more abundant and that metabolism doesn't quite bounce back like it used to. Our first decade together full of long hours at work, college, CPA exam, job layoff, financial stress, infertility, traveling the world to meet our first child, holding our next child 9 months later in the NICU, a year later facing weeks upon weeks of bed rest where all the responsibility was on one spouse, loving a birth mother together in a far away hospital as she said her goodbyes to a child she was entrusting into our lives. Many sleepless nights, sick kids, chore upon chore, constantly meeting the needs of the children who were so badly desired! It all has taken a toll and we just don't look quite as sharp as we used to. We've been doing a lot of living!
So is that twinkle still in our eyes? Yep, I concluded. It's still there and more twinkly than ever. Sure we might not have to hold hands every second we are together or kiss ALL,THE,TIME. But my heart still skips a beat when I hear the door open in the evening when my husband walks through it. We still send numerous texts and chats to each other throughout the day, just to check in and share "the little things" because waiting a few more hours is too hard. We still can't wait to be alone as soon as we tuck the kids into bed each night, and you should see the excitement in our eyes when we walk out the door for a date night! I still have all the faith in the world that we can accomplish anything we set our minds to because I've seen us move mountains. That hope I had about the man I was walking down the aisle to has turned into complete trust because I know the true man of character he is now! That head over heels love is still there, its just matured into something more wonderful than I ever expected.
And then I am left wondering, where we will go from here? What will we look like in another 9 1/2 years? Will that twinkle still be burning strong? Will it continue to mature? I have to believe it will continue to evolve as we continue down the stages of life together. After all, 9 1/2 years still just puts us at the beginning of this journey together. The journey of marriage is really quite wonderful! It hasn't all been perfect, but knowing someone has your back and you have theirs for this entire journey of life is pretty amazing! Creating a family together and a heritage together is a beautiful thing. Sharing common goals and dreams with another human being gives us a purpose that we could never accomplish alone! Knowing someone fully and being able to be vulnerable with another person and knowing that they will still be right beside you, no matter what is a wonderfully perfect gift! Yep, I'd say we still have it and it's just gonna get better!