We were basically children when we got married. In 2001, digital cameras were just entering the photography world. Thus, enjoy pictures of our wedding pictures.
We couldn’t even rent a car for our honeymoon; we were so young. On this day, 18 years ago, we said “Yes” to each other forever. Saying “I Do” to Brian is the best “Yes” I’ve ever said. We’ve been partners since day one.
There have been a lot of chapters to our story that we never expected or planned. We’ve had our share of lows – heartbreak, disconnection, disappointment, hope deferred. That’s part of the gig.
But we’ve also shared the greatest of adventures together. We’ve traveled the world. We committed not only to each other, but to living an “only God“ story. We’ve intentionally built a family that reflects our love for the whole world and displays miracles. We’ve been committed to our own transformation and wellness in our unique ways. We’ve moved cross-country. Twice. We have fought big, disagreed, been in stalemates, and consistently worked toward oneness. We have honored each other, forgiven frequently, stood our ground, led each other, and sought to partner in every way. We have worked to figure out how we can each contribute our best to our partnership, leaning on each other in weakness, and pushing each other to grow.
We’re just getting started.
The day you say “I Do” you do so without any clue what you’re really committing to. You say “I Do” to whatever is to come. You say “I Do” to the person who’s in front of you and to whomever they might become. You say “I Do” to who you are now and who you will become. And you do so in the name of love and hope.
I was raised in a faith system that taught me from an early age that I was to submit to my husband.
Submission was a one-way street. My husband was to lead me and our family and I was to follow. Through a variety of messages, I absorbed that somehow women were secondary to men. Our voice was less than and our roles were prescribed.
Through a whole bunch of grace, I married a man who didn’t believe in any of that. He believed we were equals. Partners. Better together. Submission was mutual. Gifts, roles, and responsibilities weren’t based on gender. Equality was our posture.
Our goal was partnership.
We’ve flipped a lot of scripts in our marriage. It’s not “traditional”. My gifts are far more leadership and teaching oriented than Brian’s. I’m better with finances. He’s been a stay-at-home dad (most of the time). I’ve been the breadwinner (most of the time). I’m more people-energized. He’s a deep well of wisdom due to the power of his observation and discernment. He’s emotionally intense. As I am. He’s an Enneagram 5w4 and I’m an Enneagram 8w7.
And yet, our partnership works not because we’ve put on “traditional” roles and responsibilities, but because we’ve done the work to figure out how WE work best together. We’ve wrestled through how we best display faith, hope, and love to the world. We have listened to what we each can bring to our marriage, family, and world. We have actively shunned what the world — and church! — have told us we should be. (Can we agree to stop SHOULD-ING all over each other!?!?) We have flexed in different chapters of our story so we can serve each other best and help each other live life to the fullest.
PS. this may likely be my anniversary card because traveling last week plus a sick child this weekend has been legit. #reallife