To My Husband
I am infamously bad at being affirming and loving.
I was conversing about love languages the other day, and I said that my husband jokes that I don't really having a love language that I give out to others. I know that I am quality time person, but I have to consciously think about how I let others know that I appreciate them and value them, because it doesn't come naturally to me.
My husband, Garrett, is richly blessed in this area. He has a thousand ways every day of letting me know how he loves me, and it is the most natural thing in the world to him. It's one of the qualities that initially drew me to him when we met at thirteen years old, and when we started to date, I realized how much he reminded me of my father in this regard: he was a man unafraid to show unconditional love to others.
With that being said, and being keenly aware of my tendency to rush through life's moments and people without acknowledging their beauty and value, and as we are about to have our kid, I would like to shout from the rooftops some words to Garrett, because words seem to be the best way that I can express how I truly feel in a way that sticks with me.
I admire everything about who you are. Above all, I admire the way in which you radiate God's gift of joy so authentically and in everything you do. I'm not joyful by nature, I look at the glass half empty and find humor in the dry and obnoxious parts of life. But you seek out and perceive the inherit goodness in everything and everyone around you. You see past another's flaws and acknowledge the fact that they are good and mirror the image of God, and you do it without effort. I hope that our son is also blessed with such a rich gift.
I appreciate the small ways that you have loved and do love me, even when they go unnoticed or unappreciated. You drove down in a crowded van to my college graduation and ran up the hill to hug me in my cap and gown, even though I freaked out about how you weren't dressed for the occasion. You wrote me letters constantly when I was studying in another country, even though you don't like writing and it took effort. You came to my Irish dance competition on Black Friday after working an all night shift at Kohl's, and never complained about the hours of accordion music. You spent an exorbitant amount of money to travel to see me dance at the World Championships and accomplish my dream, not once but twice, because you knew how important it was to me. You drove long hours to Ohio to visit me and slept in random dorm rooms with people you didn't know and followed the rules of a stricter college than your own because you valued the short time we could spend together.
You are endlessly patient with me and all of the drama which I pour into your life every day. You bear my odd and annoying quirks, like when I am loud in the morning or I tap on tables or am bad at washing the dishes. You affirm me with notes and words and hugs even when I'm too lazy or tired to reach out to you in the same way. You always support me, always encourage me, and I have never once doubted that you love me without reserve.
You are my person.
I am so happy and grateful that we decided to start dating after all those years being neighbors and slyly thinking the other person was hot. I am blessed beyond all describing to be bringing a new life into the world with you. I already have known for so long that you will be an amazing father and that our kid will grow up with a truly powerful witness as his role model.
As Twain wrote, “To get the full value of a joy you must have somebody to divide it with.” And that is what I have with you. Thank you.
Photo credits to Nat Marie Photography (you are lovely, thank you!)