13 Years Ago

Thirteen years ago today we said ‘I do.’ I can’t help but laugh when I think of how young and clueless we were back then. Twenty three years old. Babies, really. WAY too young to be jumping into marriage. (Why didn’t anyone try to talk some sense into us?!?) It still blows my mind that somehow we lucked out. We’re still in this together. Still plugging away. Still just figuring it all out as we go. 
Thirteen years ago we were different. I was skinnier. He had a head full of hair. We were child-free. We were carefree. We went on dates. We slept in late. We went out with friends. We didn’t have a mortgage. We went on spontaneous road trips. We were still kids. We thought we were living the best days of our life. We were oblivious to the fact that the best days of our life were yet to come. 
Thirteen years ago we had no clue….How hard it would be. How much fun it would be. How frustrating it would be. How funny it would be. How to tackle challenges together. How much we could depend on each other. How dumb we could be. How smart we could be. How much life could change us. How lucky we were to have each other.
Thirteen years ago I started an anniversary book. Each year in August I fill up a new page. We take a picture and I write a little bit about what our year has been like. There have been new jobs, new homes, vacations, and babies. Flipping through the pages is a real trip. 
I see our photo from 2001. We look proud to have survived our first year of marriage. On our anniversary in 2002  we went to the state fair and had pictures taken in a photo booth. We had just found out we were pregnant…and sadly, lost the baby just a few weeks later. Our 2003 photo shows the slightest hint of a new baby bump, that turned out to be Ben. 2004 was the year we became parents and our world turned upside down. In our 2005 photo we were a family of 3…and seven months away from becoming a family of 4. In 2006 Jack made his grand entrance. And in 2007 we’re posing in front of our first mini-van. I’m pregnant again in our 2008 photo. And in the 2009 photo Anna made our family complete. Our 2010 photo is posed in front of the Golden Gate Bridge, just the two of us. What a fun trip that was. 2011 was the year of our big move to Minnesota. We weren’t getting along on the day of our anniversary…no picture. And last year on our anniversary my parents showed up unannounced to give us a card and take our family photo. We’re in sweats and flip flops. I’m not wearing make-up and the kids are dirty. But we’re all smiling. I love that photo. 
My husband and I are not a perfect couple. Not even close. God knows there have been days I’ve wanted to run away. He’s never let me. Got knows there are days when he’s wanted to shut down and shut me out. I’ve never let him. He keeps me grounded. I pull him up into the clouds. He is logic. I am emotion. We are polar opposites on so many levels. But somehow we always manage to find each other in the middle, even if it takes a while to get there. He puts up with me. He forgives me. He makes me laugh. I’m proud of our little family and this little life we’re making together. I can’t wait to find out how we’ll fill the rest of the pages in our book. 
Happy 13th Anniversary, Phil. I love you!
2013

Comments

  1. Congratulations on your anniversary! You have a beautiful family! I am so sorry about your lost little one though.
    We too got married young…I was 22, he was 24. We had no idea what we were doing. This year we celebrated 21 years. I think that young and not knowing any better sometimes works because you “grow up” together. Thanks for joining in the LOBS Link party!

    • Excellent poins, Michelle…it DOES seem like we’ve “grown up” together. Luckily (even though we’re different people than we were 13 years ago) we still like each other. Most of the time. ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. That’s beautiful story of your relationship, Marie – the ups and downs of life in thirteen years. We have just reached double that and still just as happy with our ups and downs. I’d love to have pictures from every year – what a great idea to do that – even the missing picture has its own story – I’m pleased you got through it all – and good luck with the next 13 ๐Ÿ™‚

  3. Absolutely LOVE this! I love your honesty about the fact that it is not always perfect, but that y’all make it work…because you want to! Great post! Happy Anniversary! :)-Ashley

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