Sept. 27, 2013 02:03

Appreciating the life we're given


The other night it was around dinner time. Mike had just arrived home and I let Wilder run out in nothing but his diaper and t-shirt to greet him. Wilder, of course, escaped and headed straight for the shallow ditch in our neighbor's yard. Mike scooped him up and the sun was all setting kind of and everything looked kind of gold and Mike was laughing and Wilder was really laughing. It was an Under the Tuscan Sun moment. It's one of those moments that time kind of slows down and you wonder what you were so worried about five minutes ago and you definitely forget that anything is imperfect.

And I thought "Dear God in heaven, you gave these creatures to me. To me?! Thank you thank you thank you." It's something I don't think I do nearly often enough. Definitely not as often as they both deserve.

Today is Mike's birthday and we've celebrated 11 of them together now. His birthday, in fact, was our first non-date date. We met at work. We were working late. I found out it was his birthday and insisted we go for sushi. I was hoping for a kiss and maybe a good front hug at the least. I got a side hug. But, more than a decade later I got the husband, the father to the child. And frankly I got the whole package. I made a lot of mistakes along the way. I can't really ever know how many people were praying and how I ended up so very blessed with this man. He's kind of beyond. He is as imperfect as I am. Our marriage is as imperfect as our two flawed selves. I get caught up in all those little everyday ridiculous naggy imperfections. Then I step back and know with certainty that beyond all and above all and through every single thing it's him. It's always him.

There are large periods of time leading up to and during Wilder's birth that I don't remember at all. But, I'll never forget driving to the hospital, it was nearly nine o'clock and totally dark. We were pulling onto Pinhook and I looked at him and said "I'm so glad it's you." He smiled. I smiled. I don't think I'll ever forget that moment. I always knew about Mike. Long before he knew. But, that night as we headed for the birth of our child I had a kind of clarity that was beyond anything I'd ever known. A realization that I would not be me without him.

I often say Mike and I don't complete each other in the way most people consider their spouses. I don't believe it's a healthy thing to wander the earth half a person only to feel completed by a man. I believed and still do that we were two whole people with full lives that met and fell in love. And now our lives and our life stories are intertwined in a way that makes it hard sometimes to see where one of us ends and the other one begins.

Life is hard. Love is even harder. Whoever said 'love means never having to say you're sorry' wasn't married. They definitely didn't have kids. And while I'm no expert on marriage, I'm working to be an expert on my own marriage and more importantly on my own husband.

And today I'm feeling thankful for a life I don't deserve. Thankful for Mike on his birthday. And working on being more thankful for him every other day of the year. And loving him with my messy imperfect heart. Because as much as I know he is mine mine mine. I know that I am his. Beyond everything else and through everything else.

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