He doesn’t fill some void within me, or make me whole. He’s not my best friend or my other half. He’s my husband. My partner, my equal, my rock. A whole separate person of his own who chooses to share his life with me, and I, mine with him.
We were married very young. We knew we wanted to be together, to do this ting called life together, so just one month after I turned nineteen we eloped. We had met when I was sixteen and been dating for two years at this time. We knew that we were ready to begin a life with each other. I know people questioned and even worried about our decision, after all what could we possibly know about love and life at the ages of nineteen and twenty? The answer surely must have been nothing. Close, but not quite. There was one important factor that we did know; we knew who we were. We also knew what path we wanted to go down. We decided to take that path together, for better or worse, to grow with each other by our sides. We made vows and we meant them.
No marriage is ever easy. No marriage is ever fully without trial or tribulation. Everything in life doesn’t always come up roses. Here we are, going on twelve years of marriage later. In that time we’ve experienced career changes, moves across country, and back, the buying and selling of homes, the birth of two wonderful children, and unfortunately the terminal illness and subsequent death of one of them. So here we are, going on twelve years later, and now I feel like I can say I know quite a bit more about love, and life in general, and most importantly, I still know who I am.
I am a whole person on my own. I was not looking for love in order to gain completion of my half-self. I was not looking for someone to make me the person I would be. I am who I am on my own accord. I have family, friends, and an entire community that does not revolve around my husband. I have my own mind. We have separate interests, and hobbies, and thoughts, and passions. Likewise, my husband does not need me in order to function (despite what I may tell people). Without me he would still have his career, his life and avocations entirely his own.
What we do complete, together is our family. Every day, we wake up and make the choice again and again to keep doing this thing called life together. To be Mom and Dad. We don’t always agree, we’re not always on the same plan, but every day, over and over, we choose each other and the life we have built together. We make time for one another. We make room for one another. And aside from just being Mom and Dad, we let each other be Becky and Loren as well. We encourage and celebrate each other’s successes and shoulder the burden’s of each other’s failures.
It is one of my greatest hopes for our family that in this way we will have lead through example so that our daughter will grow into a level headed person of her own who knows who she is and what she wants in life. Someone who will never let her individuality, or thoughts and opinions be swayed or suppressed. (who am I kidding, she already is)
We are strong, not because we have melded ourselves together into the single thought line of one super-person, but because we allow our individuality to exist so that we may each contribute the best parts of ourselves to our family and our life together. Where one has a deficit the other fills it in. On top of this and above all else we respect each other. We are present with each other, while still allowing each other room to grow. We communicate and make every attempt to follow the same strategies to be a united front, so-to-speak.
We argue and fight and get annoyed with one another from time to time because that’s what you get when two strong willed people don’t see eye to eye, but the truth is, I wouldn’t trade what makes my husband him any more than (I’d like to think) he would trade what makes me, me. There are a lot of people who’ve spent a good portion of their life trying to find such a person, and who’ve encountered several bumps along the way. I’m happy to have found my husband at such a young age. I’m happy with the life we’ve built in the time we’ve spent together.
My husband does not complete me, instead we compliment each other, and he does complete us.
Note: Remember how I mentioned at the top that we eloped?
The pictures embedded in this post are not actually those of our wedding,
but of the reception we held for our family and friends three months later.