Seven years ago on this date, I married the love of my life. We got married at a local lake in the gazebo on a warm and beautiful day. It was a very small wedding with just a few family and friends there. I was there early and had to fend off a few people learning how to do fly fishing right beside the spot we were to get married at. I was never a suit guy up to that point so being in a tux walking around was quite the change for me. That morning when I got up, I spent time nervous and excited.
Pretty soon the guests were there and I was waiting for my wife to pull up and come forward. It (other than the birth of my daughter) was one of the most surreal moments of my life. It felt almost like an out of body experience, like I was watching the events from the outside, unable to believe it was happening to me. Before long the moment came that my soon-to-be wife pulled up and made her entrance. I will never forget watching her walk up the aisle toward me; so incredibly beautiful, and when she smiled it was hard to think of a moment that I had ever felt as happy.
The ceremony went without a hitch other than a few ducks that were quacking behind us for most of the wedding, but something stuck with me from that day. It was the vows that I spoke to my wife and how much I meant to live up to the promises I made to her on the day I placed the ring on her finger and looked into her eyes.
Now, seven years have gone by. We’ve had our ups and downs, our good times and bad, but one thing remains from that day. That is the love I have for my wife and the vow to her that I still hold special. The thing that has changed from that day is that I now love my wife even more than I did then. Now, not only am I in love with my wife, I truly understand that I love her.
People tend to get so wrapped up in the ‘puppy love’ stage of a relationship that when it ends they become bored or look somewhere else to hold on to that feeling. Although it is a great time in any relationship, it also isn’t true love. Only after spending years with someone; do you fully appreciate them and understand that love means much more than just holding hands or making out in public. Love is much more than pet names and PDA.
Love, when it is real and good, is many things. It is being there and supporting your partner in the highs and lows. It is about the comfort of being yourself, even at your most exposed and vulnerable, and not being afraid to do so. It’s about the knowledge of having a best friend who you know will understand when others don’t. It is also still about being able to lose yourself with them in a kiss like when you first met them. It’s the in-jokes that only the two of you share and that smile and glance across a crowded room, letting them know you are still checking them out after the years have gone by. It is a fullness that can’t really be explained. When they say that ‘two have become one’ it really is a true sentiment. You may be separate individuals but you can also share a common mind and heart. Love is about fighting for the person you love even when times are tough. Love is also about sharing together as equals.
After these years have gone by, I still look forward to seeing my wife and my best friend every day. When she is gone I miss her. When she is sad, I am too. I try with all my power to give her the best and happiest life I can possibly provide her with. I have never met anyone as beautiful, smart, funny and perfect as her. Never in my wildest dreams could I ever have imagined finding someone who makes me feel the way she makes me feel. She is everything to me and I would do anything for her.
To this day, one of the most beautiful things in the world to me is simple: It is looking into her deep blue eyes when she smiles, and the way they light up and sparkle. It really is magic with this confounding ability to hold me captive underneath that gaze. To make me weak and strong all at the same moment. When I see that smile in her eyes it takes me right back to that woman that I fell in love with years ago and it makes me appreciate all the more how lucky I am to have her in my life. She has taught me so much and made me feel loved. She has given me the greatest gift, my daughter. She has no idea how much she truly means to me because I don’t know how to write something that could capture the beauty of what she has given me.
I can’t wait to spend my life with her. To share in it together until my time on this earth has ended. I will feel lucky and proud to have been able to spend it with such an amazing woman as her.
I love you Melissa, and I always will.