What does a 14th wedding anniversary look like?
It starts with a 5:30 a.m. bootcamp class. When you get home, you spend 15 minutes with your husband before he heads out to work. It’s the only 15 minutes you will see him all day, but you’re a sweaty mess from bootcamp, and he is dividing his time between talking with you and finishing up his morning routine before walking out the door. You’ll spend the rest of the day doing laundry, running errands, then heading off to spend the night with your daughter’s girl scout troop before your husband even gets home from work. You’re the troop leader, and tonight was the only night that all the girls would be in town to have their final field trip. So 15 minutes with your husband on your anniversary will have to do.
It’s only 14 years anyway. Not a milestone. You can celebrate later. After 14 years of kids and marriage, you learn to not only put yourselves second, but that the course of a lifetime is more important than a single day. No biggie.
But then you check your Facebook memories and see the video you made for him four years ago, for your 10th anniversary. You watch it, sitting on the couch, STILL sweaty from bootcamp (core day is a killer), with your morning-drowsy 8-year-old snuggled against you as he watches cartoons. You realize you are finally starting to look older, as the much younger faces of your courtship and wedding days stare back from the screen.
You smile. You tear up a little when you see a glimpse of your now deceased grandpa alive and well at your wedding. Then you see the birth of your family, and all these pictures of the things the two of you have done together…have survived together…have made together. And you hear Dave Matthews singing, “You and me together, we can do anything, anything.” Suddenly you find tears streaming down your face. Well, you can’t really tell the tears from the sweat, but your face is definitely wet. This life he has given you, that he has built with you…it’s SO BEAUTIFUL.
Then you start lamenting the fact that you let life take over THIS day. Because it’s not just another day. It’s the anniversary of the day that got you to 5:30 a.m. bootcamps, and quick morning conversations, and snuggles with drowsy kids on the couch, and laundry, and errands, and girl scout overnights. Everything is sweeter, and harder, and easier, and fuller, and normal, and extraordinary because of this day. Yet here you are, treating it just like the rest.
But I guess that’s part of the beauty of a 14th wedding anniversary. It CAN be just another day. And you can both be okay with it just being another day. Because you’ve spent 14 years working, and building, and loving so you could feel secure enough in each other to let it be just another day.
Love you, babe. I’ll see you tomorrow. And I’ll skip out on bootcamp.