So I have to finally admit it's been kind of a tough year for marriage in our family. I haven't shared that Sean's parents have separated after thirty-three years. Among the numerous changes that have occurred, it has given us a chance to examine how much care and concern a relationship needs to be handled with.
Our anniversary this year feels kind of different. We don't have anyone in our family leading the way now. We have painfully learned how destructive a marriage falling apart can be. Most importantly, both Sean and I both know we are very committed to continuing to make ours work.
So with that in mind, on our twelfth wedding anniversary today I am going to celebrate a dozen aspects of relationship that really work. Granted tomorrow I could tell you the 100 things we still struggle with, so please don't misconstrue this list as an indicator that we have it all together.
1. We talk. And talk & talk...and then we talk some more. It's kind of impossible to be around me without that happening, but after all of these years thankfully Sean is right there with me.
2. We apologize. Okay if we numerically kept track Sean would beat me handily at this, but we both can be "I'm sorry" machines when we know we've screwed up.
3. We work well as a team. I think this is most apparent when we're in the kitchen...even though it can be a lot of work at times I love cranking out a meal or especially parties together.
4. We enjoy the same things. This continues to grow in our relationship. I fall deeper in love with sports and somehow his appreciation for crafting keeps expanding. I love that our individuals interests keep becoming mutual knowledge...and that we have found numerous things we enjoy to do together.
5. We get stronger. When our lives and our hearts have been put to the test we've been so fortunate to come out of our struggles with our connection strengthened.
6. We go...we make plans. Sean counted last night that we'll have been out of the house three nights in a row off doing fun stuff (thanks to summer vacation). No matter if it's errands or a big trip I love getting out of the house with him.
7. We encourage each other. Sometimes Sean might not totally want to hear my version of "encouragement" and actually sometimes I blow his off too. However we are always there to be each other's biggest supporters.
8. We give each other credit. The joke is when I say "we" I mean "Sean". I try to always make sure I point out his hard work and he is so good about doing that for me...even when he doesn't have to.
9. We critique each other. Yes, this sometimes doesn't happen in the kindest, most loving, manner. We both mean well though and we're good about challenging each other to try to be the best versions of ourselves.
10. We're affectionate. Again, Sean is much better about this than I am, and it certainly ebbs and flows. However every minute of hand holding or quick kiss means so much.
11. We laugh...I will laugh with him about things I would normally be mortified to share with anyone.
12. We balance each other well. I focused on this when we renewed our vows to each other two years ago...and it's even more true today.
Thank you Sean for the last dozen years...I love you to the moon and back.