“I more than love you, I’m not whole without you. You are life itself to me.”

We’ve been married for 12 years today. Twelve years ago, we stood, facing each other, holding hands, and we promised each other forever. We were babies. Just kids. Unprepared, naive, and so unaware of what the next chapter of life was going to hold.

No one explains that becoming one takes time. It doesn’t happen in front of your family and friends just because you say “I do.” It doesn’t happen when your baby is born and in your arms. It happens every day, and it’s taken us every day of the last twelve years and will keep taking us every day for the rest of our lives. It’s hard to choose loving and prioritizing each other when there are bills to pay, bathrooms to clean, laundry to fold… and it’s even harder to remember that loving each other is separate and bigger than loving her. She changed our lives and made our world infinitely better, but we still matter the most. She is here because of our story. Becoming one is what happens in the tears and the laughing and the fighting and the forgiving. We’re still learning how to give up pieces of ourselves to make room for the pieces of each other, but that’s what makes this story ours.

Being married and staying married takes work and sacrifice and is the most rewarding miracle there is. Twelve years ago, we committed to the work and the sacrifice, not truly knowing the gift we were getting. I wouldn’t change a single second of that day and that choice to be yours. If our union has been anything, it’s been a testament to what God can do with two reckless (and maybe even a little foolish) kids.

(years past)

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