He had gotten home late last night. I’d fallen asleep and never heard him crawl into bed.
We heard a thump, thump, thump of something banging the next morning. Kids must be up, we each must have been thinking. He came out of the bathroom and shrugged on his clothes. He walked over to my side of the bed and gave me a legit good morning kiss. I’ve missed you, I thought.
He headed out to survey the chaos outside our bedroom and shut the door behind him. Signaling the gift of me having the option to stay in bed longer while he managed the minions. Feeling incredibly thankful for him and his generosity, I got up and went to join him. He started a big pot of coffee, enough for my family who was staying the weekend, and I started breakfast. A tag team routine we have down even when it’s just our five.
It was Sunday morning after all so not too much lingering over coffee. Instead we all peeled off after breakfast to get ready. A large pack of freshly cleaned clothes hung in my closet. Without asking or telling, he had run to pick my things up from the cleaners. It must have been Friday before he left town, he’s the best, I mused again at how fortunate we are to have him.
We walked into church on time and minimally wrinkled and found our pew near-ish the back in case of a kid outburst. I assume we’re nearing the end of that stage, but we’ve become accustomed to our place in the sanctuary.
The sermon started and he put his arm around my shoulders while I held his other hand. This is a move that still takes my breath away after over a decade. I remember my entire 20s sitting in churches, single, and so longing for a relationship. I watched the couples sitting around me and found the men putting their arms around their girlfriends or wives one of the most beautiful and romantic gestures I could possibly witness. I dreamed of that happening for years. I can still remember the first time this man of mine put his arm around me. I couldn’t help but lean over to kiss him because I still find it a little unbelievable to be sitting in church with a man I’m in love with draping his arm around me.
We came home.
He and my brother set to work disassembling our current entertainment center (circa the late ’90s) and installing a flat screen t.v. on the wall while I made sandwiches for lunch.
I watched him work, patiently, methodically, accurately, and felt my heart swell up yet again. He can fix anything and will press through the complications and uncertainty until everything is done correctly.
He has a big birthday on Wednesday. This is the thirteenth birthday I’ve spent with him. On the first one, I styled a complex, poem-based, adventure with clues for the next birthday surprise waiting to be uncovered. We went to Hawaii right after his birthday the first year we were married. One birthday I was on bedrest and he waited on me. One year was a surprise 40th birthday party with all his friends and family.
I love him so much. We struggle. We fight. We have good days and bad days. But today I was reminded of how incredibly and impossibly in love with him I am. I love him the most in the small day-to-day moments that can go unnoticed if I don’t take the time to write them down and acknowledge them and thank him for all he does.
He is so generous. He is so patient. He is so sexy (seriously, I still think he is the hottest guy I have ever met). He is wise and funny and strong and good, and we are so blessed to have him at the helm of our ship of five.
Happy birthday baby, I love you.