to fall in love.

You know the one’s.  The kind of people you meet who by their very own nature, inspire you to do more and to be more.  The kind of people that change the world and somewhere along the way you’ve been lucky enough to let them change your life too .  He is one of them.  Him, up there, my husband.  Before him I often wondered what it would be like to be in love.  Any prior taste of it came from my family and from lousy college relationships that in some such way I’ll probably always be thankful for.  But this kind of love is more than that, it’s more than I ever could have hoped for actually.  It’s the kind of love that isn’t looking to be saved or fulfilled.  It is not needing nor impressive.  It is not unbreakable or free.  In a wondrous way, however,  all of these things are exactly what it ends up being day after day.  It is bigger than oceans and stars.  It is bigger than me.

This is love,and what it’s like to fall heavily into it.  These words are for all of you lovers and this moment is my chance to celebrate one year of marriage with the man I adore.  To my angel in blue jeans, this is for you.

You laugh and it’s my favorite sound.  A deep-set vibration that fascinates and captures me all at once.  Your smile is hesitant yet comforting.  Your eyes are soft like the water we stand in.  And then magic happens:  you laugh again and it makes me wish that moments like these were more prominent in all the world.  It’s full of emotions that are completely unexplainable.  But love, real love, doesn’t need to make sense because it’s everything.

It’s befriending a stranger with no questions asked.  It’s taking risks.  It’s tiny cafes and driving under the moonlight before the story begins and then it’s continuing to do it long afterwards.  It’s spontaneous but consistent.  It’s colorful but balanced.   It’s forever.

For me, it’s like holding your hand one thousand times but feeling something new with each and every touch.  It’s the way you dress, the scuffs on your boots, the tears in your jeans, the fact that you have a better sense of style than I probably ever will.  It’s the music you listen to, the beer you sip, the kindest of words you consistently choose to use not just because you love me, but because they’re who you are.

My love for you is unconditional.  I try to be better because of you and somewhere in a world of chaos I’ve found myself completely grounded.  I shine brighter, I smile bigger, and for the first time in my life I am unexplainably a different kind of complete.  I have fully discovered myself as a person not only because you exist but because you’ve become this part of me.  The part that a woman searches for her entire life.  The part when she feels like she is the person she knows she wants to be.  Patient, driven, thoughtful, like she can do anything in the world.

As a girl and a writer, I want you in one hundred different kinds of words.  I sit here, early this morning and look out into our tiny yard.  I think about you working - hours of labor just to keep us strong.  It’s 7 AM and you’re probably singing now because that’s what you do in the mornings.  I think about you driving home, sawdust flying out of your windowsill landing amongst the fields that I know you dream of one day exploring.  You pull in the driveway and our one year old pup rushes to the door to greet you.  Filling our house with the fresh scent of lumber, you bend to kiss her forehead.  I feel your chest press against my back while your salty arms surround my frame and I realize that you’re not just standing next to me.  Your pain is my pain.  Your dreams are my dreams.  As you walk to the fridge you ask me about my day, so simple yet so fantasy like.  I smile, settle into your arms, and read aloud from my journal as I smell the Budweiser melting off of your lips.  Like our interlaced hands, every day is the same, yet in a way, so brand new.  Moments like this, dreams like these, being in love is loving it all.

Today is our first anniversary.  We’re young.  You’re young and I am too.  We’re at the very beginning of this journey and as much as we think we are starting to know who we are and what we want, life has a way of changing people.  But just like the time when summer meets autumn, we adjust to it all.  I’m beginning to believe that being in love is getting to spend all of life’s changes with the person that makes you strong enough to handle them.  It’s dreaming, it’s soul searching, it’s wanderlust moments but it’s steady.  So this beginning I speak of is one that I will keep sacred in my heart.  For it was during this time that life and love became real to me.

Every day you remind me to express my dreams and to chase hard after them.  You teach me to spend more time working on the dreamer rather than the dream.  You’ve gifted me with a hopeful heart and a purpose.  You’ve taught me to listen and to trust.  You smile.  You Pray.  And you’ve given me a voice.

And for this, I thank you.  My dearest husband and friend, I am finally home.

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