Sunday, June 1, 2008

7 years

Saturday, the 31st, was our sixth wedding anniversary (and we did go out for a very nice "dinner and a movie", thank you very much!).
I never did get around to posting the obligatory mushy ode of love to my husband in celebration of the blessed day we were married six years ago... hehe.
I'll spare you all.

Instead, today I'll post a mushy ode of love to my husband in celebration of the day we met, which was seven years ago tonight...
June 1st, 2001.
Actually the story of how we met is not mushy at all. We both grew up in the Portland area, we both attended (he played, I was a spectator) soccer games for a team my friends played on for at least 6 months, and we actually had unknowingly been going to the same church for a couple of months before that night, yet had never met each other. There are a million little freaky coincidences about us knowing people who know people who are somehow connected. A million little misses on chances for us to meet; being at the same place with the same people at different times. It's rather ironic that we had managed not to cross paths before. But then one night in June -the first night of June to be exact- we finally met.
I'd actually had my eye on him for the whole soccer session since I found out he had split with his girlfriend. I didn't think he knew I existed, but it turned out he'd had an eye or two on me at one point as well... he just chose to look away as he thought I was there each week with my kid (which was really my friend's toddler, hence the reason I was at all the games... to help out with him while his momma played soccer) and Ryan wasn't really interested in what he thought was a ready-made family at that point.
Anyway, I found out he was going to be at a friend's bbq this one specific evening so I decided it was as good a chance as any to actually meet this guy face to face. Well, we met. And then said goodbye. And I thought that was it. Don't get me wrong, I was still very attracted to him, still very interested in him... I just felt like it wasn't reciprocated. We chatted a bit, no big deal, and didn't really talk for the rest of the evening. Then before he left for the night -he actually "left" his keys sitting on the table and had to come back up to get them- he oh so casually mentioned, "hey, if you want me to send you that link for that website we were talking about..." and I gave him my email address. He emailed me the very next day, which was a Saturday. And on Sunday we finagled a group of friends to all have lunch with us after church. Which ended up in all of us hanging out at his apartment all afternoon. And then we talked on the phone on Monday. And Tuesday I invited him to a comedy club with some friends of mine. And on Wednesday we got together again. And on Thursday we talked on the phone for hours. And that night, that Thursday night, not quite one week after we had met, I wrote in my journal (before my blogging days, sadly... we're talking plain ol' pen and paper here folks) that I knew I was going to spend my life with this man.

There's a saying that I think I read on a Hallmark card at one point that we have adopted for our own; I actually had a dream about it and remembered it word for word one of those early weeks in our relationship. It goes like this:
From the moment I saw you, I wanted to meet you.
From the moment I met you, I wanted to know you.
From the moment I knew you, I was in love with you.
From the moment I loved you, I knew I would share my life with you.
And from that moment, to this moment, and for all the moment yet to come
I will love you with all my heart.

But really, nothing sums it up better than that.
Long story short, we have spoken every single day since that first day we met. Exactly six months after the day we met he asked me to marry him. And precisely 364 days from that first night we talked at that bbq, we were saying our I do's in our church in front of our family and friends.

I always rolled my eyes at people who said that they knew right away that they loved someone. That they knew when they met that that was who they were supposed to marry. How can you know that, I thought. How can you know someone like that that quickly? How on earth? That is absolutely crazy. I had this timeline in my head of how it was supposed to be... dating, engagement, blah blah blah.
And then suddenly there I was. And in less than a month of knowing this guy, I was flying from Portland to St. Louis with him to meet his best friend getting married that week. And I found myself lying awake with him on the pull out couch in Mike and Mike's living room, talking in hushed whispers about how soon was too soon to get engaged. How long should we wait so that people didn't think we were crazy exactly like we had always thought those others were who rushed into this fairytale version of romance and marriage.
But that's how it was.
We met on June 1st and it changed my life.
I can't imagine these past seven years without him. I can't imagine these past six years not being his wife. I cannot imagine where I would be, what my life would be like, had I not met him. Crazy I say.

And it just keeps getting crazier... I mean, look where we are now!
If you had told me that June night, that a month later I'd be flying across the country with that man, I would have told you you were mistaken. If you had told me that night that a year later I'd be married to that man, I would have laughed in your face. If you had told me that two years from that night I would be married to him and be watching him with our baby girl in his arms, I would have seriously doubted your sanity. If you had told me that in the next seven years we would have two kids, have moved five times, lived in three different states and have ended up here in St. Louis, MO where I wouldn't have even back then thought I had any reason to visit...
Well it just goes to show you that any plans I thought I had for my life went right out the window after that night. And man, has it turned out so much better than I could have hoped or planned for.

Thank you, Ryan, for being at that barbecue. Thank you for "wanting to send me that link". Thank you for being who you are and for making me smile every single day. Thank you for making me feel so beautiful and so very happy and so unconditionally loved. Thank you for sharing your life with me. Thank you for asking me to be your wife. Thank you for this life we've created together. We are so blessed.
I thank God every day that it was His plan for us. And I can't wait to see what the next seven years -heck, what the next seventy-seven years bring...


K.M.L said... made me tear up a little bit! :) Love you guys!

Anonymous said...

Great post Heather! Happy anniversary!

I honestly knew when I met Tom I would marry him.. I literally feel that I felt it within the first 5 minutes. But I always feel stupid telling people that because I think they're thinking 'yeah, right.' So I'm glad someone else feels the same way. :)

Denise said...

Happy Anniversary! My DH & I just celebrated our 6 year anniversary on the 1st too!

jenny said...

aaah! happy anniversary! what an awesome post.

i think the way you met and how it all unfolded makes your love story that much more interesting! :)

Kristi said...

Great story, happy anniversary!

Nicole said...

Happy ANniversary

jessica said...

awwwwwww!!! happy anniversary! what was the link? ;)

Amie R. said...

Happy Anniversary! You were David's wedding surprise! :)

Ryan said...

very nice post heather...but you did leave out a few key points. you left out all the little "tests" that i gave you to try to see if i could scare you away. the website that you wanted was for playing tetris online and you could get a little "trophy" if you were in the monthly top ten. and if that didn't scare you off then when i invited you to come watch me at my bowling league that first wednesday sure should have. and if neither of those did, then inviting you to the midwest for a friend's wedding was just the thing to scare you off. i am glad that you passed those tests!
Love ya!

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