You greeted me this morning with “By the way…” then gave me a passionate kiss.
My hands were full of dirty laundry. My heart was pounding frantically as I rushed to get us all out the door for an early morning dr’s appointment. My mind was overflowing with forms to finish and children to dress and snacks to pack. My hair was a frizzy mess. My glasses askew. My eyes still gritty with sleep.
I wasn’t my best me.
I’ll admit, my first reaction wasn’t entirely positive. I’m not a morning person. I have tunnel vision when I’m in a hurry. And I don’t like to be interrupted at the best of times. Which is why we don’t usually make out in the hallway in the middle of the morning rush.
As you grabbed me, I thought “What the…” As you leaned in, I thought “Really?!” I may have even growled under my breath.
I have so much to do. All the time. Most of it is important, or at least seems important at the time. And it never stops. Not when you get home from work. Not after “bedtime.” Not on summer holidays. I don’t get it all done. I don’t even try most days. But it’s always there, hanging over my head.
This is a particularly busy season of life. For people who once enjoyed sleeping in, lazy days and reading for hours, the past decade has been an adjustment. We’re often snappy and overwhelmed. We’re usually sticky and smelly. And we’re almost always exhausted.
We’re not our best us.
We’re parents. Parents of young children, at that. This isn’t a crisis or a problem, or even a surprise. This is just the way life goes. It’s easy to get stuck in survival mode.
But I kissed you back, in the middle of the chaos, and by the end I was smiling.
Because you are still so good at that! It wasn’t something I thought I needed or wanted right then, but, boy, was I wrong. It’s one of those important things, that doesn’t seem urgent, but probably is.
Sometimes I forget to kiss you. Or hold your hand. Or tell you the ways you are wonderful.
That just won’t do. This year, I promise to kiss you every time you leave me and every time you return. Because “being us,” even in the middle of chaos, is a habit worth pursuing. We need it more than ever these days.
18 years ago today we promised to love each other, at our best AND at our worst.
Not just when it’s expected. Or easy. Or convenient.
We have some pretty great moments – romantic moments, life-affirming-can-you-believe-how-awesome-our-family-is moments, inside joke/kindred spirit moments, laugh-until-we-cry moments… but I think it’s the not-so-easy ones that matter the most.
This is when I know you love all of me, the parts that aren’t so pretty or so fun (or so rational if I’m honest). Not in the gushy, I just-FEEL-so-loving-towards-you way… but in the I’ll-stick-around-and-won’t-just-take-your-crap-and-will-hash-it-out-and-forgive-and-apologize-and-hug-you-anyway.
And I love you that way too!
For Better or For Worse.
Happy Anniversary to the best man I know!