Ten years come and gone so fast, I might as well be dreaming

Ten years ago today, Mike asked me to marry him. (I didn’t say yes for a few more days, and I debated about whether to wait and post something on the 24th or to go ahead and do it now. Obviously now won out.)

We hadn’t actually been out on an official date at that point. Not because we were courting, but because he was my boss, and we were trying very hard to follow the rules. Because of that, I wasn’t completely sure how he felt about me. And then he asked me to marry him. I was, in a word, surprised. Everyone was surprised. But I knew (in a way that I couldn’t necessarily put into words without sounding cheesy, and I am not so good with the cheesy) that I wanted to be with him, even if I didn’t have a clue what “forever” might actually look like. So, three days later, I said yes. Ten years ago.

When we look back at that time, we laugh and say things like, “We were so young!” and, “What were we thinking?” There’s nothing else to say, really. I was 19, and he had just turned 23. We had no idea what we were doing.

It’s been ten years full of all sorts of things. There’s been family drama and graduate school and career changes and my dad’s death and fantastic vacations and lazy weekends and road trips and concerts and changing churches and moving. We have been through a lot together, and we have staked our claim: This is who I am, this is who we are together. Some of those lessons have been difficult, but we have learned them and changed and grown together. We are not those 19- and 23-year-olds. We both feel so much more confident, so much more grounded in many ways. He makes me brave. He gives me the courage to take risks like changing jobs and dreaming about the future. I hope I do the same for him. I am so thankful that 19-year-old me said yes, even though she had no idea what she was getting into, because I like where we are and who we are. I can see the winding path we took to get here, and I know I could not be me without Mike.

So, baby, here’s to ten more years. (And ten more after that, and ten more after that . . . for as long as we both shall live.)

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