This week my husband, Stephen, and I will celebrate our third anniversary, though it feels much longer than that. The more I learn of him, the more stories I hear and conjure in my imagination, the more I feel we’ve been circling each other’s hemispheres for the past twenty years. Our histories echo similar stories, jokes, places, even people, but always just missed intersecting.
Each day that we’re together I exhale relief that our circling orbs finally crossed paths. While I, of course, wish we had met sooner, I remind myself of all the years to come, the endless possibilities and swells of love awaiting us. I will treasure them all and recite vows to reaffirm I won’t only commit in the grand gesture of the wedding ceremony but in the subsequent everyday, ordinary moments.
I will snuggle up next to you in bed, even when I’m hot or feeling I should get going for the day, so I can savor a few more minutes feeling the warmth of your body and your breath on the back of my neck.
I will set aside distraction to look you in the eye and truly listen when you speak to me.
I will praise and support your efforts–large and small–to be a better man rather than criticizing your shortcomings. I want to build you up the way you do for me and the way you deserve.
I will gladly wash the pan with caked-on eggs after you make me breakfast.
I will hold your hand when we take walks even if it means adjusting my gait to be in sync with your stride.
I will thank you for putting up with me and loving me even when I make it extra difficult.
I will watch your movie picks without complaint because I know how they bring you such happiness.
I will trust in your word and intentions to be a devoted father and helpful husband to our soon-to-be newborn.
I will appreciate how we balance each other’s strengths and weaknesses, knowing we’re guiding each other to the best versions of ourselves.
I will kiss you in the kitchen, in the bathroom, on the sofa, on the stairs, at any time of day to remind you I desire you always and everywhere.
I will tell you I love you every single day because I do and because I will for my whole life and because every breath is worth the loveliness and truth of those words.