It is easy to transport myself back, almost 10 years ago, to the BCM House. We met in the fall of Freshman year, but you were quiet, unassuming, and in the background. In the spring of Freshman year, I started to notice you and the more I noticed you, the more I wanted to be around you. I didn’t know why exactly and at the time, I wasn’t even sure that meant I liked you really. I just needed to be around you.
You would say it was your dashing good looks.
While I have a deep appreciation for your handsome appearance, I feel sure that wasn’t it. And upon further reflection years later, I think I know now. You had something I didn’t and I wanted it. You were the guy who jumped in and did the things that no one else wanted to do. I was the girl who stood to the side and hoped that someone else would get to it first. And I noticed you because I always know the things that need be done and procrastinate doing them. I usually notice the servant things that need to be done and do them if no one else will, begrudgingly.
But that’s not you, no. You were always the first to clean the tables and put things away after program finished. And I noticed because I wasn’t doing it. You were doing it happily, quietly in the background, with a real servant heart, not looking for any thanks or affirmation. A quality I have never had.
And here you are, 10 years later, wiping tables. Not of the BCM house, but of our house. The home that we’ve made together with the sweetest little girl we could have ever dreamed of. Our love isn’t as easy or free as it was then, things aren’t as simple as a walk home or scavenger hunt across campus. Love is harder now. The concepts of love as a choice rather than an emotion and fighting to protect your marriage aren’t just ideas for us anymore. They’re real.
Despite the fact that we knew that hard is a part of life, and especially life together, that doesn’t change the fact that it is, well, hard. An argument could be made that medical school and parenthood sort of exacerbate the hard, but that doesn’t really matter to us. Something I love about you and our life together is that we never avoid the rocky road just because it is rocky. If the rocky road is the one God has called you to, you’d rather be dead than not take it.
But what the hard work of everyday life together has taught us is that there is a deeper and more soul satisfying love to be found there. As we witness day in and day out God’s common grace and simple provision for us, it would be hard not to be thankful for where we are today – the good, the bad, and everything in between.
The funny thing is that 5 seems like such a small number compared to the life I hope we get to live together. I can only imagine how much we still don’t know and have to learn along the way. But I hope that one day, 60 years from now, we will be sitting next to each other (maybe in an assisted living home in Williamsburg) laughing and smiling about all the life we’ve been blessed to have together.
There’s no one else in the world I’d rather love than you.