Seven years. That’s seven years of marriage. I’ve known Kim for eight and a half years.
The intensity of the first couple of months of knowing her, having her open her heart to me, getting to share myself with her, if our seven years of marriage had been that intense, I probably wouldn’t have survived. So many incredibly late nights, watching movies, talking, laughing, playing games, enjoying each other’s company, figuring out what we both had a pretty good idea of from the beginning, that we were right for each other.
When Brad and Jil (friends of ours) got married, another friend, Troy, asked, when Kim had left the table, “Is she the one?” It wasn’t even a matter of thinking about it. I knew that if there was a “the one,” it was Kim.
We complement each other very well. She is the dynamic one, coming up with new ideas. Are her ideas dangerous? Sometimes. Are they uncomfortable, usually for me? Definitely. Hell, we’d probably still be living in the condo if she hadn’t said she wanted something else. I am the steady one. I don’t initiate much, but I can be depended on to get the job done. We accomplish so much through discussion, through understanding and communication, that it’s really surprising when we don’t connect on something, or when we disagree. I’m not going to say that there have never been arguments, or hurt feelings, or misunderstandings.
I clearly remember our first fight. I remember thinking, ‘This sucks. Are we broken up, now? I don’t want to be broken up.” I remember wondering if I had to emotionally distance myself and get ready to leave, then we talked about it, and we made up, five minutes later. Amazing.
Since this is our seventh anniversary, I will try to come up with a single highlight from each of our years of marriage.
Year one: The wedding day. This one might be a little obvious, but just because it’s obvious doesn’t make it any less valid. It was the day we promised ourselves to each other forever. It definitely got our marriage off to a good start, having all those friends around, celebrating such a great day.
Year two: Lillian was born in the hospital, September 11. Another obvious one. I bet you can guess what year five is going to be, too. The fourth person entered our family and our lives have been enriched so much by everything that she is, from her kind and caring heart to her off-the-wall sense of humour.
Year three: Our new house. Three days into the third year of our marriage, Kim and I moved into our house in Minchau. So much changed then. Sure, we had more space in the house, and we had a bigger mortgage payment, but we also had a place that was our own, and felt way less like a rental. No need to worry about downstairs neighbours, no need to concern ourselves with the heavy foot traffic just outside our door. A close contender was the decision to homeschool. I can’t decide whether that goes into year two or year three, and all of these things are highlights, so they’re all getting in, no matter what. I’m writing this post, after all.
Year four: My work project falls apart. I know this doesn’t sound much like a highlight, and it isn’t. But with how supported I felt by my wife and my family, I knew that my professional life was only a tool to provide for my family. It helped me to prioritize my life and know that my professional career definitely comes after Kim and the kids. It also helped me to transition to contracting.
Year five: Olivia is born in the kitchen. Of all the sentimental reasons I have for wanting to hold on to this house, even when I know that we will only be here a short while more, the night Kim and I spent, waiting for Olivia to come into the world, is the biggest. I really do tend to wear my emotions on my sleeve, and this is no exception. I get weepy in the eyes, just thinking about that night, and to turn and walk away from the site of this miracle, just the thought of it hurts.
Year six: Toward the end of year six, we tried to pull the trigger on an acreage. The timing was lousy, the house was structurally unsound, and the finances didn’t work out for paperwork reasons, but for what almost was, for what we let ourselves dream of, I have nothing but good memories.
Year seven: Our family. With Olivia maturing into full toddlerhood, with Lily becoming a big kid who has big opinions, and with Nick stretching forward into preteenhood and with puberty knocking on the door, we have a family dynamic that works wonderfully. With a wonderful wife and mother to my children, and with the beautiful kids I have, as cheesy as it might be to say, every day has a highlight that I could put here.
Happy Anniversary, Kim. I love you,