Sunday, 20 September 2009
12 Things I love about you
12 Years ago today, your trembling hands took mine, and you rubbed your thumbs across my knuckles. Sometimes gentle, sometimes firm, your touch centred me and helped me forget the 250 people staring at us. Your caress kept me locked on you, staring into your eyes. I saw love and hope and sheer happiness reflected back at me. You swore to love me for better or worse, in sickness and in health for as long as we both should live.
So, here, on the 12th anniversary of our marriage, I once again (as though I don't do this constantly anyway) reflect on my good fortune, the blessing of you.
1. I love your smile. I love the way your eyes crinkle when you smile, the way your eyes shine. Your smile takes up your entire face. You have different smiles. You have a small smile, when you're having your photo taken. You hate cameras pointing at you, there aren't nearly enough pictures of you in our home, my love. Let's remedy that.
(My mother laughed when she saw this photo. She just knew you were ready to kill that photographer! Much as I love this pic of us, it's totally you're fake smile).
You have a funny smile lips pursed, eyes darting, when you're trying not to laugh after you've snarked me. You've got a smile when you're trying not to keep a straight face after some more of Sam's cheekiness. You (and I) try so hard not to laugh, but damned if he's not freaking cute.
You've got the most tender smile for Alexander - one for when he says something sweet, one filled with pride as he reads to you, or shows us some new concept he's picked up. You're so proud of him, and your smile shows this. You have a smile when you pretend you just did not brazenly hit on me. You have a cocky smile that makes me laugh when you've clearly made me....happy.
2. I love your hair. I know that sounds like a silly one, but I want to get this one in before you cut it. Oh, how I wish you'd keep it right where it is now. Still neat, but just long enough to run my fingers through. Perfection.
3. I love the way you smell. It's a hint of soap, a hint of Obsession, and something that is just..you. You never, even after a 12 hour day, ever smell anything less than wonderful. I could breathe you in and just be entranced.
4. I love listending to you playing away on your bass. I love hearing you making music up, because I know it means you're totally relaxed. It's "you" time, and it's so deserved. It makes me calm.
5. I love your work ethic. I know sometimes it drives me mad, when you won't take a day off when you need it. But I admire this in you, I admire your honesty and how hard you work for your employers. I love that you are reliable, dependable. I love that you give your work everything while you are there.
6. I love that you give us everything while you are here. I love that we are clearly your priority. I've never, in our 13 years together, had cause to doubt that.
7. I love how considerate you are. I love that you would help anyone with anything if it were in your power. I love that people told me that about you before we'd even met. That people told me that you were the nicest person I'd ever meet. I love that they were right.
8.I love that you cry when you see something sad on the news. I love that seeing a child in pain, or sad, or hungry affects you so deeply. I love that you care so much.
9. I love that even though you hate how upset I get about things like this and this or this, you understand my need to expose myself to them. You understand that I believe that they deserve more attention than they get. I love that you tolerate my soapbox, and the smile you get on your face.
10. I love that my mother loved you. I love that she knew you were perfect for me. I love how well you get on with my Dad. I love that when my mother was ill, it was your suggestion that we move in and that I take care of her. I love that you were prepared to do what we swore we'd never do - move in with family, for her sake. I love the support you gave us all when she was sick. I love the gentleness with which you treated her, that you knew exactly when it was time to take Dad out for a beer, that you knew when I just needed you to hold me and let me get it out. I can never thank you enough for that.
11. I love the way you parent. I don't think it possible for a woman to pick a better man to parent with. You are gentle and loving with them. You make sure to spend as much time with them as you can. Not a weekend goes by that you don't take them off on your little adventures - to the river, new parks, bushwalking, swimming.
You are as involved as I am, and there is nothing I can do that you cannot. You do homework, nappies (though you cannot seem to match colours to save your life) discipline and the world's best cuddles.
Both of your children adore you, and deservedly so. You are helping to create two good, humble, loving men. You do this with your words, you do it with your actions. I could not be more proud.
12. I love that right now, when I am at my most difficult and screwed up, you seem to know just what to do. You are accepting and loving and strong. I will never, ever be able to tell you how much moments like this mean to me.
You are the love of my life. We were so lucky to find this so early, Joel. 21 years old and we had found the person we wanted to spend the rest of our lives with. You are my best friend, my lover, my closet confidant, my teacher, my soul mate. We are very different, yet somehow a perfect complement to each other.
I will never love anybody the way I love you. You were my first love. You are my forever love. I don't deserve you, but I'm never letting go.