We married with a plan; we continued with none. It was easy to tell ourselves that the next step was to have a baby, to grow a family, to show that indeed we were moving along a perfectly calculated timeline. But that didn't happen, of course. Things don't always go our way, of course.
And looking back at the almost two years we had to just you and me, I'm ever so grateful that life brought us somewhere else.
If I squint, I can find ourselves on our wedding day and remember exactly who we were in the folds and creases of our bodies and our souls: such wide-eyed, ecstatic newlyweds with a perfect image of each other, hoping and expecting nothing but the best. It was adorable; we were immaculate. And then life happened and hit us like a truck. On day one, the newness enveloped us; beyond that, it was the swirl of married life that carried us day to day. There were job resignations, family dramas, travel adventures, kitchen escapades, new friends and old ones, photoshoots and blog entries, sleepy afternoons, ungodly mornings. There were many things. But no matter what the affair or the circumstance, it was always you and me, Raffy and Deanne.
Dear husband, you have been my world. You were perfect to me on the day I married you. But as time passed, I peeled off the layers and realized how imperfection is actually miles and miles more beautiful on you. The past two years have shown me the person that you are, the person that no one else can see but me: you in your quiet moments during breakfast coffee, you in your element pounding on the keyboard working on spreadsheet after spreadsheet, you in your attempts to write letters and have those hard conversations, you in staying patient with me and my ever-changing moods, you being the humble aide to everyone around you. I have been the witness to the amalgamation of all this and more... and oh how lucky I have been!
Then there was the unfolding of you and me, the fusing of two lives, two souls, two everyday routines. I look at the tapestry we have weaved with our own hands and stand before it in awe. This is not the work of romance and sparks but of decisions, service, and love - much more difficult but infinitely more worthwhile. It has been so beautiful - walking side by side in new cities, sharing our story with others, creating brunch traditions, fighting and making up, dealing with pregnancy woes and celebrating pregnancy wins, building our home and doing everyday chores, rising in the morning with prayers and winding down at night with books and conversations. There are times when I look at you, still in disbelief that I am interwoven with someone so intricately. Such is the wonder of a marriage.
I have to admit it: I will miss having you all to myself. I will miss the wedded you and me. I will miss doing everything together, just Raffy and Deanne. But the Big Guy Up There has decided that it is time for us to grow another way, to serve in another direction, and to love another one. Let's take the ever treasured past two years and build on it, creating an even bigger and bolder tapestry - this time, with an additional pair of precious and little hands.
So forward march, dear husband, with my hand in yours, always and forever. On to our next great adventure.