“These are the hands of your best friend, young and strong and full of love for you, that are holding yours on your wedding day, as you promise to love each other today, tomorrow, and forever. These are the hands that will work alongside yours, as together you build your future. These are the hands that will passionately love you and cherish you through the years, and with the slightest touch, will comfort you like no other. These are the hands that will hold you when fear or grief fills your mind. These are the hands that will countless times wipe the tears from your eyes—tears of sorrow and tears of joy. These are the hands that will tenderly hold your children. These are the hands that will help you to hold your family as one. These are the hands that will give you strength when you need it. And lastly, these are the hands that even when wrinkled and aged, will still be reaching for yours, still giving you the same unspoken tenderness with just a touch.”
Three years ago today, we held hands as these words were spoken to us in a forest with a path leading to the ocean. Three years ago today, we officially stepped into this adventure – together.
Since we first connected over six years ago, it seems like we have seen everything together. Your life-threatening illness – cured. Going through six rounds of donor egg IVF, and the loss of our baby at 9 weeks that tore a hole in our hearts. Finding out the day before our sixth round fail that the international adoption program we’d been in for 2 years was suspended, and realizing that if we want to be parents now, it would require a lot more money and a huge precipice to leap from. We’re not sure what’ll happen next, but our hands are clasped together, tightly. Holding you as you received the call from Australia to learn your father you hadn’t spoken to had died suddenly, and finding out afterwards that your mother had lied to you for decades about him, making up stories that made him seem like a demon when he was actually missing you terribly and had your photo on his desk. Dealing with my attempt to reconcile with my mother, and you holding me as I realized she would never be an iota of the mother I needed after she chose to spend the night at her new boyfriend’s house instead of come be with us during our miscarriage at home, then not as much even picking up the phone in the weeks that followed. Watching me start my business, see a lot of success, and learn to live with the ups and downs that self employment brings. Adopting our sweet Mastiff, Ruby, from the shelter and deciding to keep her or even though they had lied about her health and age. Raising four ducklings in a cardboard box til they were ready to go into their very own coop that we built with our own hands. You learning to drive and getting your American driver’s license after a few tries, and in the meantime falling in love with bike commuting. Painting our house, building our kitchen counters, doing the demolition to remodel our bathroom, ripping out half the driveway so we could have a bigger garden You building the changing table and the mobile made from seashells for our baby that never came. You dressing me when I couldn’t after my back injury, and rushing to be by my side when the miscarriage destroyed my heart and tore through my body. Me learning to ask for what I needed from my friendships and learning to walk away when they ghosted me. You learning to stand up to family members who lied and insulted, while also learning to reach out to those who were reaching out to us. Me learning to make bagels and croissants and brioche, while you learned to butcher a pig and cure the meat, and us both falling in love with all things charcuterie. Understanding and constantly learning how to enjoy life more and to get through the darkest of times, closer and more committed than ever.
We have evolved. We will continue to evolve. And every day we are stronger. Every day we are more love than the day we met. Every day I’m grateful for you and shout it from the rooftops on this day, our third wedding anniversary, May 22nd, 2017.