That's how long Paul and I have been married. 19 years today. Yikes! How has that happened? 19 years have flown by--positively flown by. So today, we get a special 19th Anniversary Sleeping with Bread.
Just the two of us and a witness. Just the way we wanted it.
I was all for casual, but my aunt refused to host a BBQ reception.
In the last 19 years of marriage, when did I receive the most love?
Wow... I'm not sure my non-detail-oriented brain will be good at this, but here goes. Over the course of our marriage, I have always felt that Paul loves me 100%. (I won't say that I think he's always liked me. I've had my unlikeable moments.) He shows that love through his actions more than his words. He's that kind of guy. The guy who goes out to get your Starbucks pretty much on demand. The guy who loves you through thick and thin--literally. As my weight has fluctuated, I've never felt insecure about his feelings for me. His affection comes without demand for change. He takes me as I am. For better and for worse. And when Paul does choose to express himself with his words, there is not a man out there who can beat him for picking and writing in a greeting card.
It has been said that you go into your marriage with all of your emotional baggage. It doesn't get checked at the door. That was true of me to the nth degree. Paul endured much of my emotional angst as I wrestled with my issues. It hasn't always been pretty. I once saw an episode of Oprah in which there was a contest to find the most romantic man. Some of the men were pretty impressive, I'll have to admit. But, as I watched these couples, I thought about what they would be like years from now. Would that man still be there? I've seen marriages fall apart and I can tell you, the romantic gesture is not what matters. Its staying power. Will your man stay with you through the crud. Paul has and I know Paul will.
In the last 19 years of marriage, when did I give the least love?
Only every day of my marriage probably. In your wedding vows, you make a lot of promises. Promises you cannot keep for the most part. Every therapist will tell you not to make always and never statements when communicating to your spouse. But that is exactly what wedding vows are: a list of always and never promises. You're doomed to failure. BUT... it is the big picture that matters. Although I have lost my patience with Paul, tried to change him, made him the problem when I was the problem, I hope I have matured enough that it is more the exception than the rule--my failures. At the end of 19 years of marriage, I hope it can be said that I loved more than I did not love; that I cherished more than I did not cherish; that I honored more than I did not honor.