Words to Live and Write by

I am willing to fall Because I have learned how to rise.

I craft Love from heartbreak, Compassion from shame, Grace from disappointment, Courage from failure.

I am among the brave and brokenhearted, and I am rising strong.

(credit to Brene Brown)

Monday, August 10, 2009

Four Years and Counting

This week, Anthony and I will celebrate our 4th anniversary. It's a little crazy to think we've been married for four years already, and then that we've only been married for four years.

I love looking at our wedding pictures, in part, I admit, because I'm really not photogenic and our photographers somehow managed to make me look pretty good in almost every picture. This is especially impressive because I'm always next to my naturally photogenic husband. One of my favorite pictures is a candid shot where Anthony and I appear to be "gazing into our future.”

I wonder sometimes, what we would have thought if we could have known what even these four years, both long and short, would bring.

We’ve had more than our share of difficulties, including
• 1 year of daily migraines
• 2 ½ years of college each, and therefore 2 ½ years as starving college students
• 3 years of infertility struggles, including 2 miscarriages
• 1 year of intense puppy training
• 3 moves, 2 of which were between states
• 2 (soon to be 3) family weddings
• 3 new nieces and nephews and 2 more on the way
• 7 different jobs
• 10 church callings
• 1 lay-off
• 8+ months of unemployment

Now, I know what you're thinking: those are only the negative things! And you're right. But sometimes it is too easy to focus on the negative things—especially when they just keep on coming. It seems like we've never had an "easy" stretch of time in our marriage.

But with all the bad, we've had a healthy serving of good, too. I guess you can't have one without the other. Unfortunately, the blessings we’ve had are not as easy to list as the trials. We've been extremely blessed with a marriage full of love and kindness. In the four years we've been married we have never once had a fight, despite the ample opportunities you can see above. I blame that mostly on Anthony: he is the most patient and compromising person I know. And instead of life's misfortunes coming between us, we feel we are growing closer together.

So while it's hard to focus on the positive when there is so much else going on, I think if we'd been able to see these past four years before we got married, we wouldn't have traded away this much joy for anything.

Thanks for a memorable 1460 days, Love! I’m looking forward to the next 4,998,540 days with you!