Friday, July 1, 2011

Five years

Five years ago today, my wife and I were married. It feels like we've known each other forever, but maybe that's because we've lived a few lifetimes' worth of stuff to get to this point.

After we married, my wife moved to be with me in Missouri, where I was just finishing up my master's degree and starting my PhD. Almost 3 years later, we were packing and moving to Bethlehem, where we signed papers on our first house and then I started my new career as a professor.

Our wedding day has bittersweet memories. It was happy day because we'd waited so long to be together, but there was some sadness. My wife's father missed the wedding because he was in the hospital battling cancer, so it's like there's a hole in that day despite all the good friends and family who were there to make that day special. A mere three months after the wedding, he passed away.

The first year was hard because of the sadness that we experienced, and due to the fact that it was attached to what is supposed to be the most unequivocally happy day of your life. The first year of marriage was the kind of hard that tests what you're made of, where you realize that the lovey-dovey feelings are great but not the thing that will sustain you. I don't mention this story to solicit pity but maybe instead to give someone out there hope that you can make it.

Since that first year we have taken some time struggling with how to be appropriately happy and mindful of the sadness around that year. It feels like there should have been an easy answer, but there wasn't. But we've found our way, and it starts with talking it out and realizing that when we promised all of those things during our vows they weren't just words. We really are in this for the long haul, sickness and health.

That's not to say it was all downers. We've had a great time these five years getting to know one another and building a life for ourselves. My wife is a fantastic partner and really represents the better half of me. And she is the kindest person I've ever known. I love traveling with her or just sharing a relaxing evening on our patio.

In a couple of months our two will become a three. I've been thinking a lot about fatherhood lately and what it will mean for us (and blogging about it, obviously!). The one thing I feel like I know is that the parents we will be is determined in part by the sum of how my wife and I choose to tackle life together. We don't give up, not ever. It's the kind of stuff you hope you pass on to your children.

It's the kind of things that makes the good times great.

The kid is kind of a next step for us. I feel like the past 6 months have been interesting as we've entered this new phase. Change without some big negative thing looming in the background to steal the joy of that moment. It's a new thing for us, but I kind of like it.

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Post #16 in my 90-in-90 blog challenge. Blog with us and join the fun. I'll be blogging both here and on my professional blog for the challenge. For more about the 90/90 challenge, read about my call for participants. The blogs participating are on the list at the right, or follow us on the #LUBlogTribe hashtag on Twitter

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