On this Valentines Day, I want to tell you how thankful I am for you. The realities life with 3 small kids, marriage, and daily routines sometimes prevents me from telling you how I feel as often as I should.
Once upon a time, when we were first starting to date, we left little notes outside our apartment doors. We might leave an invitation for a date, an Ikea catalog with cute stuff highlighted, or a small toy for the cats. I want you to know that even during those early moments in our relationship I knew you were someone special. I didn’t know how you’d be important, or even why I felt so strongly that you would be someone who would change the course of my life, but I knew then that you were the one.
One of the things I loved about you then, and continue to love today is your commitment to yourself and the ones you love. My first few glimpses of this quality came when you were committed to increasing your professional value through financial certifications for work. I know it wasn’t easy as I watched you study, turn down fun things with friends, and take training after training to pass incredibly challenging exams. I was so inspired by you then. I continued to be inspired while you I watched you pursue your MBA at night shortly after the birth of our first baby and up to the birth of our third.
You’ve shown me how to invest in myself, so that I can be the best person for our family. The best example of this has been our health journey, both yours and mine. You’ve never made me feel bad about putting the family out a little in search of something healthier, you’ve always fought for me to have healthier habits, and you don’t allow me to make excuses. For some, this might seem harsh, but for us it’s a reminder of our commitment to be better, healthier people for the ones we love. I’ll never forget our trip to Europe where you insisted we read every menu (mind you, in French or German) to make sure they offered food my allergies would allow, and something I actually wanted to eat. The easier road would have been asking me indulge or to sacrifice my health for a short period of time, but you’ve always been my champion. I want for you to know that you can expect the same from me.
As our life takes us to new places,I know we have big dreams for ourselves and our family and there’s nothing stopping us from achieving those dreams if we work hard. Today, we talk about a future where I can be an entrepreneur and you can pursue your passions. We have high expectations for life and we deserve to live out these dreams. I commit to you that I’ll fight for our future the same way you’ve always fought for me.
You’ll laugh when I say this, but outside of our marriage I’m totally an Analytical Solid. No, seriously!! For most of my life (prior to you), I was the one in control and felt like I needed to be on top of it all, have plan b’s and c’s for everything. I love that with you I can relax and enjoy the ride because you always have everything covered. I can count on you to come through. Hearing it now sounds a little awful, as if I’m taking advantage, but I cannot tell you how wonderful it is to have such a steady partner.
You know my history, where I come from and my family dynamics… Everyone is divorced. People cheat. Relationships end. People die. (I promise this part of the letter will get better) You however, have shown me that sometimes people don’t cheat. Sometimes people mean what they say. Sometimes a marriage lasts. I love that with you, I can count on the fact that you chose me. I’m the one you proposed to. I’m the only girl you ever bought jewelry for. And I’m the only one you ever will. I’m still a work in progress, but you’re teaching me to have faith. You allow me to be soft and to trust that it’s okay to be vulnerable, because you’ll never leave me. Just typing these words is literally making me tear up. You’ve given me faith in a way that I didn’t even realize I needed. I am so grateful to have a man like you as my husband, who doesn’t mind the burden of being strong, so I can be soft.
There was a defining moment in our relationship when I felt like I was walking down a path with an eventual fork in the road. Going to the right, meant that I could live up to all of the individual dreams I had before, I could count on myself, my ability to work hard, and to craft exactly the life I wanted, but it probably meant losing you. Going to the left held unknown dreams, it meant I’d have to trust in another person, I’d have to have faith in whatever was around the corner, that I’d only be in 50% control because you’d be walking down the path with me. I cannot tell you how happy I am that I chose you and this path. You’ve taught me to invest in myself, to work hard at my commitments, that is okay to be vulnerable, and to have faith. I love the person I’ve become with you, and I love the life that we’ve built. It’s been a remarkable journey and I can’t wait for what the future has in store for us.
I love you,