It's been five years of marriage. How did that fly by so fast? Sometimes I still feel like the girl with the crush on the quarterback in college.
But then one of our daughters (I won't name names) puts her hand down her diaper and gets poop on her fingers or the other one (again, keeping names confidential) continually asks, “Can we watch a show? Can we watch a show?" and I remember, I am now married to you and we live with tiny little amazing maniacs whom we created and love deeply and basically what I'm trying to say is...we're not in college anymore.
We are in the world of parenting young children together. A crazy world. But also a very a magical one. A world I'm so glad to share with you.
Since college, where we fell in love, our relationship has grown and changed and deepened over the years. It has challenged us and it has saved us. It has been one of the greatest gifts of my life. ?
I am lucky to love you.
I've loved you through the good times and the not so good times. The fun times and the difficult times. The happy and the sad. We've been through so much, and our love has been there through it all.
I have loved you when this was all brand new.
And every moment, every touch, every look was exciting. The butterflies! The anticipation! The passion! Our love blossomed quickly and it surprised me. I loved you almost immediately, and I don't even know if we were ready for it, really. But thankfully we accepted it with open arms.
I have loved you long distance.
When we both needed to pursue our own post-graduate adult life goals. You in Pennsylvania and me in Chicago. I thought I might die without you. I knew that if we could make it through the distance, we could make it through anything. (Which has been proven now since we battle tantrums together and being scolded for our pitch on “I Just Can't Wait to Be King" on the daily. ?)
I have loved you when we were trying to figure out how to adult.
When we both started working “real" jobs and started paying back our student loans and living in our own apartments and trying our hand at being responsible. We made it through figuring out how to balance jobs and friends and each other. We were clinging to our youth but also so excited to “grow up" and move things along with our relationship.
I have loved you when we committed to forever.
Oh getting engaged was exciting! We were over the moon and in love and ready to plan the party of the century. We got through all the details and planning and spending and family-merging weddings involve and came out *relatively* unscathed. It was the best day. A ceremony filled with love. We were so grateful, so proud of ourselves.
I have loved you through my first pregnancy.
Navigating being pregnant is crazy! Trying to wrap our heads around the concept of becoming parents was exciting and nerve wracking and very scary. But we did it. Together. We had each other's backs.
I have loved you through becoming homeowners.
Through figuring out where we'd settle down. What our budget was. How we were going to pay for anything. What color we'd (OK, OK...you'd) paint our walls. The stress. The choices. The moving. The excitement. What updates we would make. Prepping the room that would transform into our babies nursery.
I have loved you through new parenthood.
When we looked at our daughter together for the first time. When we were very, very sleep deprived (I mean...we still are, and I still love you.) When we were trying to figure out how to swaddle. When we marveled at this human we created together. When we couldn't soothe her properly. When we thought our hearts would burst with how cute she was. ?
I have loved you through growing our family.
By another daughter, and another daughter...
Through watching you turn into this amazing, thoughtful, caring, FUN father. I always knew you could be the best dad in the world, but watching you prove it to me has been an honor. I have loved you through my panic attacks about whether I could do this, whether I could manage three kids—you are always there to reassure me and keep my spirits up. You've helped me believe in myself like no one else ever has.
I have loved you through planning and dreaming about our future.
Through dreaming about our “perfect" next home and how we'd like to decorate it. Through talking about what our hopes are for our daughters. What vacations we want to take one day. How we want to parent our children. What we want to accomplish professionally, and how we can make it happen by supporting one another.
We're in this together—every single day. We're both in the trenches of parenting young children and tending to a young marriage and all the dreams we have. It's hard and demanding but it is worth it with every fiber of my being.
You are my rock, my inspiration, my best friend and my heart.
It's been one heck of a ride so far, my darling. Here's to more adventures together!
PS: I still have a crush on you.