Kids are asleep. House is a mess. We’ve hardly been here this summer. Our dear, dear friend has gone home after an impromptu visit. I love when people visit. It feels more like real life to me, not the numbed out, “finances are too tight to buy a kayak” kind of life. You know, real/real life. OK, I don’t know which one is real, but I know which one I prefer, and it’s the one with a kayak or two.
We’ve been together 13 years, and married 9. Our marriage has successfully outlived one cat, one dog, and 3 homes. Our longer relationship has survived long distance, military reserve service and all that entails (grateful, though conflicted I was never deployed, but that’s another story), and even one more move – to Alaska – bringing the total to 4.
We’ve had countless other adventures and mishaps – a near drowning, horse accidents, hypoxia, hangovers, lots! of vet bills, and a big bowl of ramen noodles that was dropped on the floor once, very late at night.
We’ve rolled through the addition of, and constantly present needs of two small, vulnerable, and helpless beings, who demand our very best selves. We have survived both of us being self employed, and in humanity-serving fields (read – low pay, or work so hard you can’t stand to do it enough to make the money there for the taking). One of us has been an actual working artist. (It turns out an artist can make as much money as a teacher, but no benefits, blah blah.)
We’ve handled “stay-at-home-dadship,” “I-want-to-be-at-home-momship,” and “who-the-hell-is-keeping-this-house?” levels of chaos. You could interpret that last one a couple ways. I meant, “it’s a huge mess in here!” Then I reread it and realized, we’ve had other discussions about who would keep the house, too. That is when I chose to “call a lifeline,” to tap into the wisdom of an older, wiser, and yet very human couple we hold dearly. It helped.
I’ve sat, very still, and very late at night, and thought through what it means to meet someone sparkly, get to know them, see all that they are, and commit to all of them, and then, when the going gets tough, to sit in that same way, and remember that, and recommit to all of them. Every single part. I have that privilege because I married a good man.
I’m in the middle of forging, or maybe just following, a path toward what feels like my “true calling.” You may be able to imagine what that looks like. I won’t belabor the details, but suffice it to say, it’s disruptive
My life is messy, full of love, and often totally chaotic. My marriage is enduring it. We are doing it. I still love my husband every day. I’m still feeling those butterflies, almost every day. Some days I think he’s annoying. He doesn’t blog, and he thinks Facebook is terrible, so he’ll just have to get even another way. It will likely involve a “look,” that only he and his father can give, and that both pretend is imagined by its receiver. Happy Anniversary to us!