Wednesday, June 4, 2008

The Luckiest . . .

Joy and I danced, for the first time as man and wife, to Ben Fold's "The Luckiest" (I found this great a capella version of the song and here is Ben himself singing the tune) three years ago today

That's right. I've been a husband for three full years already. In a way I can't believe it has been three years (it has gone soooo quickly with all the changes we've seen since that lovely day) and, at the same time, it feels like I have ALWAYS been married. Regardless - I still feel, very much, like I am the Luckiest man in the world.

Joy was my first real love. I dated four women in the 27 years of life I lived before her but never actually loved any of them - at least not the way I love Joy and I am positive that I've never been loved by any one any where near the way Joy loves me.

She and I were laughing the other day about our relationship and how it has evolved since our somewhat awkward first date on August 2, 2003. We joked about all the weight we've lost and gained, the three times we've moved (including moving in together in Baltimore). We laughed at my insistence - when we first began talking/typing - that I would never get married or have children and yet how much I enjoy my roles as husband and father.

We agreed that we were proud of the fact that our relationship has always been about friendship and support and love instead of just hot, passionate sex. TRY to clear that mental image and enjoy the rest of your day, I dare you! We high-fived at the fact that we both undertook huge transitions from day one in our relationship to afford the other person comfort in our future.

We both shed a tear over how wonderful our friend Vinu is for having introduced us (even if his intentions might NOT have been for a long, shared life) and we both laughed at how much we resisted his efforts to put us together and how "us" might have never been.

Here's the thing - today, three years in to our marriage, is possibly the first day that I really feel like I am honoring my part of our commitment to each other.

We stood in front of 125 of our family, best friends and friends of my parents (smile) and we cried and cried and shook and twitched at the idea that we were getting married. We spoke vows that were filled with promises of things to come and we were as sincere as the day is long in those promises and hopes and dreams. Today - frankly, we are starting to live those dreams. Really live them. Really enjoy our marriage. Really hold our promises to each other.

I've lost 235 pounds since my surgery. I've finally gotten myself in a working situation where I can find true work-life balance and can handle the time commitments and demands of each. I'm finally at a point where I am comfortable in my own skin and I finally like myself. I finally love myself as much as I love Joy. The old addage that "Until you love yourself, you can't love someone else." MIGHT be true but I would argue that sometimes loving someone else is the only way to love yourself.

I loved the PROMISE of me for all the years, months, weeks and days between Joy and I meeting and the man I am becoming. I loved myself for my commitment to giving Joy the life I wanted her to have and for being willing to make whatever changes I have had to make to get our life here. I loved myself for being able to snag a woman like Joy and some how trick her in to spending her life with me (smile).

I am happy for the first time since I was a student in college. I am motivated in ways that I never thought I would find energy and draw and I am more ambitious about life than I ever was. That is all because of Joy, Ava and the influence they have had on my life and for the love I am lucky enough to recieve from them.

I FINALLY got something right the first time . . . I finally know what all the mistakes, wrong turns and stumbles in my life were for and all about.

Joy is living her life on her terms. She is a mother. She is a wife. She has a home she is finally happy with and she's kicking butt and taking the names of the same people she might have once allowed to talk over and step upon her. She is back in school. She's finding true balance between all the interests in her life and she continues to get more and more beautiful every day (she promised me to always be s-e-x-y (kidding)).

Anywho, pop tart, HAPPY ANNIVERSARY! Thanks for a wonderful first three years of marriage. I look forward to the next three HUNDRED years ahead of us and to continuing to be the man

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