Thursday, May 8, 2008


The other day, someone in an online community to which I belong asked this question: What makes your relationship so great? I made a reply immediatel, of course. The same superficial answer everyone gives: We love each other. Ever since the question was asked, however, I have been contemplatin what my answer should have been. It is not easy to sum up a relationship that has consumed the better part of a decade of one's life. We are not the same people who took the plunge all those years ago. Many people seeking divorces will claim that their spouse has "changed" over the years. Well...Yes, I should hope he or she has changed in some capacity. The events of our lives leave a mark on us whether we with for them to or not. Lessons are learned. Wounds heal and scars form in their place. Some of the things that have happened in the time we have been together have left a sort of stamp on us. Some is for the better and some is not. Regardless, after all of these changes have taken place it is hard to wrap up into a neat, concise statement what it is that makes John and I so special together.

I can say that to the average onlooker, our relationship would seem troubled. Pardon the cliche, but we fight like cats and dogs. This man has within him the ability to upset me more than anyone else ever has been able. He simply gets under my skin, knowing exactly which buttons to press. This is only the case because, at times, I believe he knows me better than I know myself. He sees all there is of me.

I don't see the arguments as a weakness like most would. In spite of them, we are fiercely loyal to one another. And we love each other madly, almost to the point that sanity is thrown right out the window. I cannot speak for John, but I can say that he has a large piece of me that will always be his. Whatever happens to us, wherever we go, he will have this.

But back to the original topic: Why are we so special? I can certainly tell you it has nothing to do with sunshine and roses. Someone looking to marriage as a source of all things romantic will either be perpetually disappointed or setting themselves up for failure. There is a small amount of romance, but most of a lifetime together is wrapped up in the triviality of day-to-day life. The secret is to find those seemingly trivial bits that connect you as a couple. For John and I, there are many.

Almost eight years has been composed of the little moments that have bonded us tighter as more and more time passes. If this were a movie, this would be the part where a montage plays to moving music. But this ain't no movie. This is indeed my life. So here you have it: The kaleidoscope of what makes us so special....

Scrambled egg pie and the infamous trip to the grocery store. I lo-uhhhhhhhh! Backrubs. "Marry me and put this on your finger". Cake up the nose. Two pink lines instead of one. Suviving preterm labor and hospitalizations. Hearing that first cry together. His first step/ first word/ first everything. Belting out "She Thinks My Tractor's Sexy". I love you more. Wrestling matches. Junky cars and crappy apartments. The speed at which he can load a truck alone. Those eyes. That smile. That life. Crying on the baby's first day of school. Hearing "That's my WIFE" when my name was called at graduation. His hand on the small of my back when we dance in the kitchen to no music. The way our hands fit together. The solidity of him when I need a rock. The softness of him when I need to cuddle. The way his eyes have started to crinkle in the corners when he smiles and gray hairs have turned up on my head. Dreaming together. The softness of his breath when he sleeps. Being able to draw a map of the freckles on his shoulders. Giggling over bad movies and funny faces. Making fun of ourselves and each other. Laughter. Reading bedtime stories together. The sense of forever.

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