“When you say those wedding vows at eighteen, you are committing yourselves—with all that you are and all that you have—to only each other because you are young and wreathed in glory and take up all the space there is. When you say them at thirty-five, you are signing on for something wider: a whole garden full of people to love and to cherish, in sickness and in health, in wheelchairs and sleepwalking and heart attacks, in arrogance and graciousness, stubbornness and forgiveness, stumbling and wisdom, in meanness and in kindness that falls like snow and shines brighter than the Dog Star. To love and to cherish, yes. Like a tiger. A hurricane. A family. Relentlessly.” The Precious One by Marisa de los Santos
19 years ago we said I do.
19 years ago we had no idea.
We were babies.
Good, bad, awful, amazing and everything in between lay ahead for us, and we had no earthly idea.
We have fought hard with each other and fought hard for this life together.
And even though we have not said our vows again – with formality and an audience and fancy dress, – we say them everyday with our actions.
When we show up, when we stick to it, when we choose again and again and again to love and to cherish in sickness and in health, in debt and in freedom, in dreams and in duty, in expanded waistlines and new eating habits, in extended family and chosen friends, in questions and in certainty, when we table arguments for our therapy sessions, and when we sit on the porch for evening cocktails while we watch the sun set, ignoring the dishes and the kids and the laundry, we are saying our vows louder and relentlessly, for what is, what was, and for what will be.
This is 19.
Worn, frayed, patched, sacred, beautiful, and amazing 19.