five years

8:20 AM

This past Saturday we celebrated five years as married people. Five years!!! How does that even happen??? That morning we lay in bed and looked at our wedding photos. Belle was tiny, I was smaller and papa bear was a bit bigger (he correctly noted that thanks to photos one can never be happy with one's weight, you're either wishing you were thinner or loathing the documentation of you being bigger, ugh...). We had to laugh too at how young we were, babies really. I had just turned 22!! I tell you 22 seems like a hundred years ago. Speaking of numbers, let's break things down shall we? Since we've been married we have:
  • moved three times (twice, literally, across the country)
  • lived in four different homes
  • acquired two pets (though sadly one of them does not live with us at this time)
  • been to Vegas four times (oh how I miss Vegas...such fun times)
  • run out of gas once
  • bought three sofas (one from Ikea naturally and two from Goodwill)
  • collected over half a dozen speeding tickets in VA (appalling) 
  • bought two bikes (that we never ride, I blame the dirt road we live on)
  • been to three weddings
  • bought Belle five different Halloween costumes of which she like none (predictably)
  • driven to DC at 2:00 am in the morning to celebrate President Obama's win in 2008
  • traveled outside of the country five times 
  • made one baby girl
  • killed two ginormous furry spiders at the cabin (still have nightmares...)
  • bought twenty-one boxes of books (that's the last count I've got from two years ago, I'm too scared to find out where it stands now...)
  • unsuccessfully bought and tried to use two different exercise balls that now reside in the shed
  • hosted two thanksgiving meals at our home
That's just a few that come to mind. These past five years have been really good to us. There was an adjustment period of course, especially since both of us were moving in together straight from our parents' homes but once we found our groove (about halfway through) it's really been quite wonderful.
I can't say we get it right every time. I can't say we've found the secret. I won't tell you that we've never gone to bed mad at each other (once), or that doors haven't been slammed and that certain individuals haven't locked themselves inside of rooms for prolonged periods of time... I won't tell you that we fill each other's freaking love tanks every day, sometimes one of us picks up the slack when the other one is feeling blue. I'm not going to tell you that we write eloquent cards to each other for every special occasion, in fact this is our system - we always buy the cards on time but our Valentine's day cards make it to it's intended recipient around April and our anniversary cards will hopefully be written sometime before Halloween (fingers crossed!!). I won't tell you I never pout, or get irritated with papa bear for forgetting to throw away the dirty diaper, or that we don't disappoint each other or make each other sad. No, telling you that would be disingenuous. But what I will tell you is that regardless of all of that we're in this thing together, through thick and thin, through silent car drives and pj dance parties and horrid postpartum periods and graduations and parties and tears and laughter and presents and stressing over bills and kisses in the moonlight and holding hands and dirty dishes and diapers and date nights... That is the one most comforting thing - we took each other's hands five years ago and we've never let go.
Marriage isn't easy (anyone who thinks it is please do share your secrets with me) but it is fun if you make it and it is for life if you believe it. There is nothing more precious or valuable to me than this family that we have built. These two people in my life bring me more amounts of joy than I ever thought possible. Papa bear has been my rock, my teacher, my guide, my support and my partner in everything. He knows me better than anyone in this whole world and knowing that and going to bed every night with him by my side has brought me so much peace and happiness. And as papa said to Valentina the other day "I thought I loved your mama so much before you came... But I had no idea just how much I love her." Tackling being parents together has opened even more and newer avenues for us to learn about each other, love each other and be there for each other. It can be challenging, true, but it's also improved our lives in immeasurable ways and for that we will for ever be grateful to our daughter.

Here's to the next fives years and many more!

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