Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Happy Birthday to Boss

Today, the man I love turned 35. Nearly a decade ago we met. Me, nearly 20, him a bit older. Wiser. I could tell right away that he was a hard worker. And I liked the way that he smiled. He was shy, quiet, but confident. When he called me on the phone my heart beat faster, and when he reached for my hand I could think of nothing else. Only him. But after nearly a decade of loving each other, I have let some things slide. Too many things. Now when he calls from work, I often greet him with stress, frustration, or worry. Or I rush him because I am too busy. Too busy to talk to the man that I love? And when he reaches for my hand, I might give his fingers a quick squeeze, before separating to referee this or that with the children. The love is still there. I know this. It often just gets buried. Buried under responsibilities, and work, and children, and lists. Buried under life. So for his birthday, I decided to strip away some of the ruble and find the love again. The new love feeling. My gift to him, the man I love. I asked for a few days off from work. I sent the children off to my parents. A night on the town for the two of us. Just what we needed. The cell phones went away. When we talked over supper, we looked into each others eyes. Focused on nothing else. When we went to the movies we sat in the back, just like the old days. And when he reached for my hand? I held on, willing him to know how much he is loved. How much he is valued and appreciated, for the way that he loves our family. For the way that he works hard and leads our family. And in case he couldn't feel it, all of my love, I told him. Out loud. Because sometimes words of affirmation aren't said often enough. A night together, alone, was just what we needed. Because the feelings are still there. Sometimes we just have to work a little harder to find them. But that's okay. He is worth all of the work in the world. Our love is worth it. And I know that he would say the same. Happy Birthday, Ben. I will forever be glad that you were born.