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[ Happy Anniversary ]

I suppose we didn’t know what we were getting ourselves into. I suppose we were naive — I’m glad we were both naive. Perhaps naivety is courage for what’s to come, for what’s to come is always more than one realizes. More than one thinks one can take. And so I go back to this naivety; I hold onto it. I see our young, sweet, naive selves. I smile and hug us. I see our bright, blind eyes and then I say, you did it, you did it, you did it! And we are, we are, we are. We are doing it, though we made promises on love with little to no experience for what was to come. We made promises, arbitrarily, for love makes you do risky things, like get married, as if it’s so easy — seeing only the journey down the mountainside, but not what it took to get to the top. I’m so glad we took that risk. I’m so glad we didn’t see the storms that would hit us. The pain and the grief and the confusion and the loneliness. The arguments and the feeling of being so utterly let down. The stupidness. I always wondered if getting married on a boat in the water was a metaphor for what was to come. The waves. The constant motion. The instability. But at the same time, I was glad for that metaphor because I felt it at least realistic. I was glad that the moment we each said our I do’s was in no exact geographical location. Maybe we weren’t entirely naive. The sun was shining but we knew the boat was moving, our steps were swaying, the waves were crashing. The best things come with the hardest work. I truly do believe that. And so we held onto one another and together, we jumped into the water. Together is what we’ve done. Together is what I’m grateful for. I’m grateful that we’ve seen the darkest parts of each other. We’ve experienced the darkest things, together. We’ve seen the bottom of the ocean and guess what, we’re still here, together. And it’s really hasn’t been that scary. We’ve seen our demons and thrown them at each other and we’ve grown to know how to hold one another’s demons. We’ve seen selfishness and we’ve yelled. We’ve been desperate. We’ve been afraid. Still, I hold our old selves and say, it’ll be okay, it’s okay, it’s all going to be okay. Still, I hold our old selves and say, say yes, say I do, you’ll love it, I promise. And though this past year has been painful and we haven’t always been at our best, I still know why I married you. I still know what I saw in you and see in you. I still know why we’d thrive and I see how we are thriving. You’re still the person I love. Yesterday, today, tomorrow. And I’m still so glad we’re trying. I promise to never stop trying. I promise to have more grace. I promise to work on my ego. I promise to trust you. I promise to be faithful to you. I promise to do these next five years, however they come, holding you closer. I promise to approach us with gentleness and compassion. I promise to find laughter in the darkness. I promise to be patient. I promise to be kind. I promise to love you. Yesterday, today, tomorrow. I do. I still do. I will always choose you.