May 16, 2013

10 Reasons I Still Love You.

Happy upcoming wedding anniversary to my husband—and kudos to us both for forging a marriage that I would re-commit to all over again.

Living a life as a couple isn’t always easy.

People try to make it look easy, and a few of us certainly do have a less difficult time, but I truly believe that all (good) relationships take work.

Having said that, life as a duo should have a relative level of comfort, and, with my own wedding vows so close to my brain, I’m going to share with you a few of the many reasons that I still adore my man.

1. I’m still attracted to you. Call me shallow. I don’t care, but you’d be wrong—and here’s why. After all these years, I find my husband delectable—and that matters, to a degree, to all of us. Yet here’s the reason that I made this number one on my list (and it’s not vanity—although I don’t apologize for a little bit of that either). It’s because you should try to have a pleasing demeanor, attitude and lifestyle for yourself, much less for your partner. All of these qualities contribute to self-respect, and honoring your body is part of honoring your soul. (When you think of your body as your spirit’s temporary home.) So thanks, husband, for committing, not only to me, but to your daily bike rides and also to healthy eating. 

2. I get goosebumps when you call. Yeah, sorry, I don’t think I can tell you exactly how to recreate this one, because some aspects of a relationship are either naturally there, or they’re not. However, I can say that, without a shadow of a doubt, I get as excited about when he calls now as I did when I was 14 (yes, we began dating back in the dark ages).

3. You clean up puke without flinching. All right, I do find your strong body attractive and your loving voice sweet, but let’s get to the bottom of my heart—you clean up puke like you were a janitor in a past life. While I’m busy freaking out and jumping from tip-toe to tip-toe (my innate I-can’t-deal-with-this dance), and trying to figure out step one, I look over and our daughter, her clothes, and the floor are all good to go. Thanks for being the type of person who stays calm in any situation and tackles anything that needs handling.

4. You love me even though I’m crazy. Do I have to explain this one? Okay, I’ll try. I’m neurotically obsessed with expressing myself verbally; I have a monkey mind that makes a hamster wheel seem lame; I have a psychotic temper—and you don’t care about any of this. At all. You love me—who I am—which includes all of my (not) temporary insanity. Thanks again.

5. We love music like we were 16. If you’re not a music lover, then go ahead and straight up skip this reason. One of the very first things that drew me to my husband when we were children was that we both loved the same indie bands, and, to this day, we both derive a lot of satisfaction from learning about new music (although now it’s from NPR online rather than our old radio station). Music is an art form, art speaks from deep within, and, in my opinion, liking the same forms of expression might say more than you think.

6. You let me plan our wedding according to astrology. To some this might fall under the heading of number 4, but not to my husband. This particular reason probably doesn’t apply to most people, I’m aware. However, trusting the guidance of your partner and knowing when she has something to offer that you could sit back and learn from does apply to nearly all of us. (By the way, our wedding kicked butt.)

7. You support me. (As witnessed in reason 6.) Over and over again, you stand behind me and, more often than I’d like to admit, you’re holding me up when I question my own self. I cannot adequately show you the gratitude that I owe you for simply believing in me, always.

8. We laugh. I’m not sure how many other people would appreciate my love of Christopher Walken like he does; to the point that when we tried to watch one of his recent (awful) movies, my husband really got into it with me, and, while we might have stopped watching it after only 30 (way too long) minutes, we’ll always be able to recite those (few) memorable Christopher Walken lines like nobody else. Regardless of your opinions on actors, laughing together should only get more frequent after the wedding bells chime. I really believe in the power of sharing joy together, especially in simple day-to-day situations.

9. You show me love. You can say “I love you” ’til the cows come home, but it means jack squat until it’s shown. Thank you for cooking my favorite foods, for helping me parent our child as a loving union, and for worshiping the ground that I walk on (I kid, I kid). For real, though, you show up every day to our marriage with ample amounts of patience and kindness. Love is, unquestionably, witnessed in those tiny, seemingly inconsequential gestures that absolutely do add up.

10. You still think I’m cute. My husband loves to buy me clothes and jewelry, and not because either of us are materialistic. He loves to do these things for me because he still loves to see me rock them out. You know, I get so sick of reading and hearing about how women can improve themselves. The basic reality is that sexiness stems from confidence—and confidence can be helped along by appreciation.

11. (Bonus reason, how’s that?) I had to limit this list. There are literally thousands of reasons why I would marry my husband all over again every day of my life. Sure, there are some challenging days and some difficult personal attributes divided (unevenly) between the two of us (again, kidding), but there’s no challenge in writing a list for why this guy rocks. Can you do the same, and, if not, why not? Perhaps somewhere along the way you started focusing on the negative traits (that we all own) and sadly forgot all of the many, many reasons you married this person for in the first place? Well, I suggest flipping your perspective, and maybe writing a little list of your own.

Love isn’t always patient or kind or anything else that’s pretty to recite.

Sometimes love hurts. More often than not, love isn’t fair. The real reason to repeatedly re-choose your love is personal, of course, but it should, at the very least, be shared and experienced between the two of you.

Love is a joint effort.

When you’re having your moments of frustration or your days of bliss, either way, take a moment to stop and smell the roses; to remember to value what you have. Unfortunately, nothing in life lasts forever, but, just maybe, true love really is eternal.

“Where there is love there is life.” ~ Mahatma Gandhi.


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Ed: Kate Bartolotta

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