Monday, June 17, 2013

On 15 Years

Aaron and I celebrated our 15th wedding anniversary last week.
He was in Spain.
I was here.
And I missed him awfully.
When I suggested he go on this trip, we didn't know the dates.
When we got them, I realized he'd be gone on his birthday.
And Davy's birthday.
And our anniversary.
And Father's Day.
June is a big month for us.
And he said, "I don't have to go."
We'd been dreaming of going somewhere special for our 15th.
But a trip like this comes along only once in a great while, or only once ever.
And we'll have lots, and lots, more anniversaries.
So I said, "go."
And I meant it.

It was harder than I thought to have him gone on that day.
I was sad.
And I was lonely.
But I was also so glad he was there--having the adventure of a lifetime.

Before he left, Aaron gave me an anniversary present.
I wasn't surprised that he remembered, that he planned ahead, and got me something special.
I was, however, surprised by what he got me.
I was fully expecting jewelry.
In the past few years I have fallen in love with this jewelry designer and he has gotten me several of her pieces.
I love them madly.
I wear them all the time.
And I thought, "this is a pretty special day--I wonder what piece he got me?"
I should have known that he wouldn't do the expected.

Still I was surprised when, minutes before he left at 3:30 in the morning, he said, "your anniversary present is in our room.  Why don't you go get it."
Sitting on the dresser was a folded, white, tee-shirt.
I picked it up.
On the front of the shirt was a pretty bad drawing of a pelican holding a surf board.
A piece of paper fell out.
It was a gift certificate for surf camp.
He got me a week of SURF CAMP!

I walked back into the living room with tears in my eyes.
"I know its not very romantic.  It's kind of random.  Do you like it?"
"I love it," I smiled through my tears.
"It's just that you've talked about wanting to learn to surf for so long, and you always say that you want to go to surf camp.  So I just thought you should go."

And then the tears came faster.
He listens.
He knows me.
After 15 years, this is the sweetest gift of all.

Aaron and I met when I was 17.
He was 19.
By my 18th birthday we had fallen in love.
We've been together ever since.
We tried to break up once when we were dating.
But it didn't last the weekend.
A few years ago our marriage almost broke.
But we are fighters.
And even when we were fighting with each other, we were fighting for our marriage, and our love.

Now we're at 15 years.
It feels like a milestone.
It feels like a victory.
It feels like a miracle.
It feels like a gift.

I have referred to this verse often, but it feels so true for us right now.

"Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.
Love never fails." 1 Corinthians 4:7-8
Our love hasn't failed.
Even when we failed, there was grace and redemption, and love.
Sometimes our life has felt like a fairy tale, and at other times it has felt like hard work.
And all of it has been worth it.
I wouldn't trade this life with him.
I love him so.

We have spent the last 15 years growing up together.
I'd like to spend the rest of our life growing old together.

Happy anniversary, my Aaron.
I love you for always.
Love from,
PS.  And thank you for surf camp.  I can't wait!!  Kowabunga!

*I've written before about marriage. It's one of my passions.
You can read my take on real life romance here, and about the worthwhile labor of marriage here.  Where ever you might be in your relationship, I hope my words can be an encouragement to you.

1 comment:

Betsi* said...

This brought tears to my eyes. I have been so blessed to watch you two walk your marriage out in faith, hope, love and yes at times, trembling. You are an amazing example of steadfastness, grace and humility. May The Lord bless you with many long, fruitful years of peace and joy and ADVENTURE! together! Love you both.