Saturday, June 11, 2011

23 Years

The other day Alexander and I were talking about expectations of others vs. following your heart.  I shared how when I was 20 and his dad was 21, we got married.  Many people felt we were too young and weren't afraid to share the expectations that we should date longer, we should have more experiences, and we should finish college first.  Getting married and being together felt completely right for us.  It didn't prevent us from having new experiences, we just had those new ones together.  And it didn't prevent us from graduating from college.  I told Alexander it was the right choice for us, even though when I look at 20 and 21 years old adults now they seem so young.  I told Alexander that I know it was right for us because after 23 years of married life, I still feel excited when my husband walks through the door at night.  I still feel like I am married to my best friend.  After 23 years together, I am still married to the love of my life.

Steve told me once that when people ask him what it is like to be married to the same person for this long he says, "it is like being married to ten different people."  I laughed because it is so true.  Although our core being is probably very similar to who we were when we got married, we have both grown and changed so much in 23 years.  Our secret seems to be that we have been able to grow and change together.  It hasn't always been easy and I am often reminded of a card we received at our wedding from an older couple that has been married for over 50 years now, "marriage is work".  It is true.  At times it takes a lot of work remembering not to take each other for granted, remembering the other one has different feelings and thoughts than you do, and remembering that everything isn't just about you.  The fun part is that if you continue to share and learn about each other, you learn to know what to expect in the other one and then all of the sudden they surprise you and you learn something new about that person.  It is fun. 

So as we celebrate our 23rd anniversary today with seven teenagers (two of our own and five who are coming for Sophia's birthday party), I am glad that after all these years and "being ten different people" that my husband still loves me and enjoys being with me.  I am truly a lucky to be me!