No. 36: With You, For You Love.
Marriage favorites and a 12 Year Anniversary love letter. Sort of.
I’ve written thirty-six newsletters here on Substack. Thirty-six, not including the podcast episodes. (Thirty six not including 100+ before the Substack switch.) This weekly writing deadline has shaped me into even more of a noticer than I have ever been and that, friends, is saying a whole lot. A paid newsletter has forced me to keep my eyes and heart open to listen, reflect and remember more than I used to. I can’t risk forgetting the song lyric that sparks a memory or ignore a phrase I straight up cannot get out of my head. Typically, this means its time to start writing. Scrap paper, the notes app, Zeameh’s paper towel from lunch, I don’t discriminate.
I still only have one designated work day a week (I love you, Wednesday) so these scribbles and scrabbles will have to do until finally, it’s time to piece it all together. I’ll revisit it on Thursday, schedule it for Friday morning and start all over again on Friday afternoon. It’s a system a life coach would gasp at and one that would be stamped “unsustainable” or “inefficient” by experts, but it’s all I’ve got. And truly, it works for me.
That is, until this week.
This week, the only thing that has sat next to the blinking cursor for days was “With you, For you.” Day after day, I tried to think of something impactful and inspiring. Maybe heartwarming. Maybe vulnerable with a mini mic-drop. Surely there was a story to share or a pivotal moment to dissect. But it never came.
See, this weekend, O and I will celebrate 12 years of marriage. That’s the sort of thing that calls for a beautiful essay. The sort of thing that should just flow right out of me in the shape humor and light. And the truth is, all the things that could be said are true. May to May was a particularly beautiful twelve months in our marriage despite being one of the hardest twelve month strings of our lives. Counseling was as life changing as everyone promised it would be and the tools we’ve learned there proved to be worth their weight in gold.
I learned the art of invitation vs. accusation this year. We walked with each other through unimaginable loss. We suffered alongside one another and stood firm as the other floundered at times, switching places when necessary. We waited month after month for healing and we were blessed with the baby still growing inside me. We stayed up late learning and listening and we tried (sometimes failing) to be servant-hearted over selfish. We messed up. We made up. We laughed so, so much. We cried too. And I can truly say that I love, desire and delight in the man I call husband more today than I ever have. That is a kindness of the Lord and something I didn’t know I’d be able to say at points between last May and now.
Surely there’s a story there.
Surely there’s an essay. Something beautiful. Something that sticks to the bones.
But it didn’t come.
Still, all I can think of is “With you. For you.” And I guess it’s only fitting.