It started like a bad novel, on a dark and stormy night. It was December. And after all these years, I still don’t know why we picked December.
She looked like a queen in a white dress with her hair done up in curls.
I remember that she looked so soft and like porcelain. Too valuable to be held. And yet all I wanted to do was grab her hand and run away with her.
There’s a photo of my expression when I saw her for the first time in her wedding dress. It’s completely true and honest if you ever have a chance to see it.
We met in 3rd grade. Well, I was in 3rd grade, I think she was in 5th. She tutored my brother in math. I don’t think I gave her a second thought then. But I knew of her.
As we grew up together in a small school in the Oregon countryside, our paths crossed more frequently. When I could drive, in 9th grade, I gave her rides to school. In my senior year, we took a trip to the beach. She fell and scraped her knee on a rock, and I fell in love with her completely.
We dated for almost three years before we decided that our next obvious adventure was marriage. She planned it all.
I still don’t know why, but we picked December 17, 1994.
It was a cold and stormy night…
Our families showed up and loved on us a lot.
I think about the person I’ve loved all these years. I worry about her wellbeing, especially as I’ve dragged her delicate heart all over the map in my mad quest to live this life and experience as much as I possibly can.
Do I believe there is one person out there made for us? Of course. How could I not? She is like a glove. The perfect fit for my heart. She is patient and demanding. She makes you love her and fights for what she perceives as justice.
If love is like finding a needle in a haystack, then my heart must have long ago been drawn to the right haystack in the right state, the right city and the right neighborhood.
So here we are, 16 years after we decided to formalize our love affair. It has not been easy, but it’s been fun, and I don’t think there is much more you could ask for than a life full of laughter and fun.
She has suffered every setback with me. She has forged ahead when I wanted to quit. She has loved me when I’m completely unloveable. She has weathered every storm by my side and given me the three most beautiful gifts a man can receive.
There are no words for the good love you find in your youth. The kind that sustains you and envelopes you. The kind that protects you and lifts you up when you fall down.
I only understand the great love stories through the life we’ve shared together these long years. And I’m enthralled with the possibilities in the years to come.
Beautiful, I can’t thank you enough for 16 wonderful years together. This love affair was born in a storm to temper us for times like these. And when the wind howls and the rain pours down, I always know where my heart is safest.