Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Fourteen

Fourteen years. It feels huge and, on the flip side, somewhat insignificant when compared to twenty or thirty or sixty years. As marriages crumble all around us, it seems pretty awesome to have stuck it out. Believe you me, there have been days over the last fourteen years that have not been altogether happily ever after. The trend has definitely been upward though. We have learned and relearned patience. We have forgotten to focus on each other in the sea of children. We have gotten lazy and lax at times. We have moved and moved and moved and moved and moved(and moved), sometimes by choice, mostly not. We have done richer and poorer. We have done sickness and health. We have done better and worse. And we'll do it all again as time moves on. 

I hear people bust on young marriages from time to time. People change, they say. Young adults can't know their mind. Marriage at that age is a stupid decision and people shouldn't be held hostage to a choice they made at whatever age is convenient to their argument

If I knew then what I know now, I wouldn't have changed a thing. 
2001-2005: South Carolina
2006-2007: Phoenix/Seattle/Phoenix

2008-2009: Charlotte, North Carolina

2010: Deployed
 2011: San Antonio, Texas
2012: Rockville, Maryland

2013-2014: Dayton, Ohio

 2015: Virginia
 {insert photoS here. He has promised to take pictures....we'll see.}

We don't have this thing figured out. We don't have any upper hands. We're just two stubborn, sinful people who refuse to give up on each other. "I have found the one whom my soul loves," is the verse I put on our wedding invitations. My soul sometimes wants to punch his soul in the face, but when I get right, when I see clearly, when I put aside my own self...I see him. The guy I want in my corner, always. It's not about him and it's not about me, it's about something much bigger than ourselves. We're leaving a legacy. 

Our kids will not always see a perfect marriage. We may not always model what we hope for them. We fail every single day. We squabble. We disrespect each other from time to time. Our boys see what true life looks like. They see us argue, they see us make up. They see butt pinches, but probably not enough smooches. They hear a few slips of the tongue, but they see godly character that sometimes needs a bit of sanding and polishing. They don't always experience the humble, submissive wife, but they'll learn to navigate the minefield of a bullheaded woman. Above all else, I hope they see integrity, hope, faith. I pray they see that marriage is not what Hollywood has made it out to be. I want them to know that romance may fade, but true, lasting love can be rekindled day after day. With it will come the romance, perhaps sporadically. I want them to notice the times they play second fiddle to our relationship. I need them to understand that sometimes even they have to sacrifice for ole ma and pa. Perhaps they won't always get 100% of what their little hearts desire because that investment needs to go to a greater cause: Mom and Dad's marriage. 

I want them to see that there are times we could give it all up. Bicker away a covenant. Burn down the house that love built. I want them to see that the world gives us options, but given a choice, we choose each other. We choose them. We choose our family. We love them enough to give them a mother and a father. We choose to honor a word, our word, given before God and everybody. 

Reading over that again, I hope I don't make marriage sound like prison. Sean cracks me up. He's a nut. He's stubborn as a freakin' mule, but he gives in when it's important. He keeps me accountable. He loves me. He really, really loves me. And I know it, even when he sucks at showing it. He busts his tail for this family. He stresses out over things that I don't even think about. He is my perfect compliment and I'm so glad I didn't pick a pansy or a lazy man or a religious man. I'm so glad I didn't pick someone that I could change, because he's perfectly imperfect, and I would've screwed him up if I could've made him into who I wanted him to be. 

Sean has integrity. He is loyal. He gives 100% to a uniform he doesn't love because he's working for a greater cause than himself or even his country. He is a student of life and is constantly trying to make himself better, better our family. He is selfless and constant and the biggest fan of our unit. 

I only hope that he thinks as highly of me as I think of him. I respect him as much as I love him. I am proud to be his wife. 

4 comments:

Stephanie G said...

So sweet. I love this so much. You have written beautifully what marriage should look like. Happy Anniversary!

Anonymous said...

Wonderful. Honest, hopeful, true. We love you guys and miss you. Happy Anniversary! Love, Christine

Tracy Stanton said...

Happy Anniversary you two! I remember that day very well. Can't wait to see you for Jake's graduation!!!

Audie Pester said...

Well said, Chrissy! As Don and I approach our 32nd anniversary on August 1st, you have accurately described what marriage is all about. It is a journey and takes commitment from both sides each and every day. You and Sean are so blessed to have found each other. Congratulations on your anniversary and on baby #5 that is in the oven.
Love,
Mom