Greetings, dear ones! I hope your holidays were cozy and delicious and full of quality time with your favorite people. I know it’s time now to look ahead to 2013, so I’m a little late with my reflections on 2012. I’ve been driving all over Texas the past few weeks, so I am just now taking the time to write about my look back at this past year. I guess that’s kinda my style. Someday when we have small children, my family will be the one sending out a New Year’s card for everyone’s fridge instead of a Christmas card. But I digress. First, I want to talk about my recent one year wedding anniversary. The following post was written before our anniversary on December 17th, but with what happened in Connecticut a few days earlier, it didn’t seem like the right time to share it. As we all were, I was shaken up by the news and only wanted to pray and reflect and hug my loved ones and pray some more. I plan to be back soon with more reflections on 2012 and aspirations for 2013. For now, here are my anniversary thoughts…
This is going to be sappy. (I wanted to let you know up front.) One year ago I married the love of my life surrounded by our family and friends in the beautiful church building that we call home. The holiday season will always hold a little more magic and romance for us now as we remember our wedding day and celebrate a milestone in our journey together. Looking back on that day and on this first year of marriage, it’s hard to put into words what I am feeling. How can you describe such a gift?
When I met Bryan, I experienced this unique peace about him that allowed me to feel safe very quickly and gave me the courage to open my heart…finally. We just fit. And as crazy as it was to be taking this huge step in my life when we were preparing to get married, it also felt very natural. I am an expressive person (aka…I cry a lot), and several people made comments after the wedding day about how surprisingly calm I seemed. Beforehand, I wasn’t sure how I would respond to the emotions of the day having never been in that situation before. It was, in many ways, an out-of-body experience. It’s impossible to process something that huge while you’re experiencing it (at least it was for me), but I had on my waterproof mascara just in case. As it turned out, I was outwardly pretty serene. Mostly, what I remember feeling was eager anticipation. I couldn’t wait to be Bryan’s wife. It felt like we had been looking forward to this day forever. Of course, my heart raced when my dad told me it was time for us to begin our walk down the aisle. A lot of my memories from that day are a blur. I was overwhelmed by all the time and energy that went into making the day special. So many people helped bring it all together, and so many loved ones traveled from afar to share our wedding day with us. I will never forget how grateful and humbled I felt by the outpouring of love for us during that time. I felt the full meaning of the verse, “Rejoice with those who rejoice”. (Romans 12:15)
Married life is truly wonderful with my “alma gemela”. We have learned so much about each other this year. We have had conflicts and frustrations, and we have shared so much laughter and joy. This is a unique time in our lives. We are more and more aware of the demands on our time that children will add someday as we watch friends become parents, so we try to cherish the evenings and weekends spent together. Quality time is my love language, so I take advantage of as many lunch dates and lazy Saturdays with my husband as I can. As cliche as I know it sounds, he really is my best friend. I hope and pray that we will be making memories together for many years to come and that YOU, too, will find your alma gemela if you haven’t already. 🙂
I memorized this beautiful poem by Elizabeth Barrett Browning for an English class in high school. She wrote it for her husband, and it’s been on my mind lately as I reflect on my own marriage…
How do I love thee? Let me count the ways.
I love thee to the depth and breadth and height
My soul can reach, when feeling out of sight
For the ends of Being and ideal Grace.
I love thee to the level of everyday’s
Most quiet need, by sun and candlelight.
I love thee freely, as men strive for Right;
I love thee purely, as they turn from Praise.
I love thee with a passion put to use
In my old griefs, and with my childhood’s faith.
I love thee with a love I seemed to lose
With my lost saints, — I love thee with the breath,
Smiles, tears, of all my life! — and, if God choose,
I shall but love thee better after death.
Happy anniversary, Sweetheart! Te amo. Thank you for moving thousands of miles to be with me and for asking me to spend my life with you. I can’t imagine it any other way.