True love is not the kind of thing you should turn down
Don’t ever turn it down
—January Wedding by The Avett Brothers
Tomorrow we will be married for 4 years. Not a lot for many, but it has been quite a ride for us. What makes tomorrow extra special is that for the first time since we got married we will both be able to take a day off from our jobs and spend time with each other. If you have been following our blog or it is the first time you read one of our posts, you might ask yourself why I decided to write a post like this on a parenting blog. Well, because parents have wedding anniversaries too and sometimes we just get caught up so much in our daily lives, especially when having small kids, that we really postpone celebrating. But our wedding is the very reason we are now parents with two kids under the age of two, and, yes, a celebration is very much needed this year, vomit-free!
I mainly wanted to use this post to go down memory lane, so here I go.
It starts the day I fell from a horse and I broke my spine.
It was the beginning of January 2009 and because of it I had to postpone my travel plans to Central Asia. I was supposed to be there from March to June. I still remember the doctor looking into my eyes and saying, “You won’t be able to get up and use the restroom. You are certainly not hopping onto a plane anytime soon.” I was devastated. After months of recovery (and I want to use this post to say ‘thank you’ to my family who cleaned me, fed me, and looked after me, and to my friends who were there as well in many different ways), I was finally cleared to leave at the beginning of September.
It happened that Scott had just landed in that same very country a couple of weeks before I did and that at the last minute (literally the day before I boarded on the plane), I was told that I was not going to be able to live in the apartment where I’d planned to stay for the following 4 months, but that I would be staying on campus, in the very same dorm where one September morning, while I walked down the stairs to go to class, I saw Scott for the first time. And I saw his tattoo. Love Your Enemies, it read. “Yeah, right.” I thought. “Who do you think you are? Jesus? What an idiot.” And I went to class.
But not long after, I truly found God and true happiness, or as I like to say, “God found me back” at the foot of the breathtaking mountains bordering the city. And I found that I started liking Scott. A lot. But I was afraid of the long distance thing. We decided to go for it and once I went back to Europe to finish my graduate program, we would spend entire Sundays Skyping and getting to know each other. Many long emails, texts, laughter and a lot of tears leads us to July 2010 when, with a random piece of green ribbon as a ring, he asked me to marry him while he visited me in the Netherlands.
And I said yes.
Then a lot of drama happened. But we still got married. We had to leave our home and become separated once again while waiting for my visa to get to the United States. It was a roller coaster. I accidentally worked for a human trafficker. (As crazy as it sounds, it’s true. When asked at job interviews, “What is the most difficult situation you have had to face, and how did you tackle it?” I usually smile and make sure not to mention this part of my life. Because it would not land me the job. They would just think I am crazy.) I had to leave a lot of family and friends to be reunited with my husband in a country I had never imagined I would move to. Now, four years later, here we are. And that we is not just us. We also have Oliver and Margot. Our very own sweet babies. Yes, it has been an eventful 4 years. Would I change it? Not at all.
I am married to the best guy I know. He is not perfect, and neither am I. But relationships that last are not ones where no one fights. Au contraire, relationships that work are the ones where we never stop fighting for each other. Where deep down you choose your spouse everyday, warts and all.
And that is precisely what I want to do tomorrow: choose once again to be married to you, Scott. Warts and all, hoping that you will keep choosing me. Year after year.
But for now, let’s send the kids to daycare and celebrate!
Happy 4th anniversary, Scott!