“You can make anything by writing.” ― C.S. Lewis

Posts for An Anniversary Category

A Letter to My Husband on Our Third Anniversary

Dearest Shaun,

I have promised us that this year, for your anniversary letter, I will keep it short – what with both of us working, and Ariadne, all the demands on our time, and the fact that I’ve written a whole separate post for our anniversary on how we met.

And I think we both know me trying to avoid being long-winded is just not really likely to happen.

I’ll try. I’ll try to keep this short.

On the day we were married, we spent the entire day preparing for the ceremony and party, and then celebrating – a day of cool weather and fall leaves and wine and laughter and kisses and hugs and dance trains and bliss. On our first anniversary, we got to sleep in, and then drive across the river to the Encampment, to gorge ourselves on Ye Olde Timey Food and giggle at the terrible announcer for the battle reenactment. Last year, on our second anniversary, we were with Lance and Tara at Seahorse Ranch, and we walked down to the river, and all over the property, and then hiked at Munson Lake, and cooked dinner together – a beautiful day of family and peace and nature.

This year, on our third anniversary, things are a bit different. I was up at four thirty in the morning, and I got you up briefly at five. I was up again at six fifteen, and I got you up again at seven thirty. I was at work all day, and you were home in charge of child care. We spent most of the day apart. We contemplated going to a nice dinner tonight – but now it seems we’ll wait until the weekend. So much has changed, and we’d both rather be home in pajamas, snuggling our girl, than out and about after spending most of the day with our family in two different places.

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How We Met

An Anniversary, Laureny, My Little Family, Our Marriage, Shaun, Will - Emily - October 18, 2016

It is October 2009. I am 22 years old. I have had what most would call an Interesting Year.

2009 is the year I go through so many changes and life lessons, my head is constanly spinning trying to keep up.

I graduate college after the most soul-sucking, insane semester of my college career. At one point, I actually consider quitting the semester. Between my four upper level lit Classes, the usual German workload, running dance company, editing a creative writing journal, and dabbling in theatre — I am already exhausted and stressed with a ridiculous work load. That is before my grandfather passes away and I must watch my mother grieve, before I “break up” with a best friend of years after a stupid fight that took place during my 22 birthday party, and I have to mourn and struggle with that lost relationship, and then there are other family members in extreme emotional situations I won’t discuss here.

By the time I graduate in May, I feel like a shadow of myself. Absolutely running on fumes. And yet — I don’t know that I’ve been prouder of myself. As I walk across that stage to accept my diploma, I am delirious with pride and shock. I seriously consider quitting in March — and I stick it out. I pass all the classes and pull together all the shows, turn in my final portfolio and write the last German Aufsatz. It’s not all my best work. Most of it is not my best work. But I get it done. I graduate in May, and I come home with a nervous twitch in my right eye, and a determination to rebuild my family ties and have some sort of new adventure.

I go to Germany in July. I love it there, and I hate it there. It is everything and nothing that I expect it to be. On the one hand, I feel like I make deep connections with a few people there. On the other — I feel like a complete outsider, and I realize, I have never done anything this hard without my emotional support system before. I realize this is a great idea but a bad time to do it. It is a damn brave thing to do, moving to Germany alone. Turns out I wasn’t ready for it yet.

(And you know what? That’s OK. I was 22.)

So I come home, in late August. I feel more empty than ever. I feel like I failed. I feel like I have no direction in life. The plan was a year in Germany, then grad school — but in August, I feel like I have completely lost my way. I don’t feel confident I am able to do anything, at all. I feel like I have embarrassed myself and everyone I love.

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Two Years, Six Years.

My love, my husband, my boy —

I’m sitting here, writing this a few weeks early. The way life has been going lately, I know if I don’t take advantage of a few still moments to write, I might not have time for it later.

Evening is just starting to settle in, the light pouring in the big windows in the den is sharpening, taking on that amber hue that lets me know the sunshine is fleeting. Our fur baby, your kitty-daughter is snoozing on top of a stack of our stuff, some T-shirts, a few scraps of paper — because why wouldn’t she stake her claim on all of our stuff, mark us as hers?

You’re at work, and I miss you. It feels like we haven’t seen a lot of each other lately, although I’m proud of how we work to make time for each other, and each other alone. Maybe it’s just grabbing lunch in between both of our work shifts, maybe it’s the five minutes we nestle together in bed before I drift off. Maybe it’s those fifteen minutes on the couch as we’re winding down from the day — my favourite time of day, when I snuggle into your chest and you wrap your arms around me, scoot lower in the couch so you become my body pillow. How you pet my hair, drop kisses on my forehead. No matter how hard either of our days were, no matter how stressed or drained we feel — those fifteen minutes seem to cure it all, or at least make the pain and the exhaustion fade long enough to get up and do it all again, the next morning.

So, I’m writing this in the few quiet minutes I have, because our anniversary is in two weeks. When the actual day comes, we’ll be in Florida, our first vacation since our honeymoon, hopefully riding horses or walking down to Blackwater River. I hope we are holding hands, I hope we are laughing, I hope we are breathing easy.

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SuhWeeks Wedding Extravaganza!

In honor of our second wedding anniversary, I’m reposting some of the journaling I did in the days directly following out wedding. Below are my immediate impressions and memories from our incredible wedding day — despite any stress or worry I felt in the days leading up to the actual ceremony (including our dear, sweet eldery pug passing the night before our rehearsal dinner) — the day of our wedding was a beautiful, perfect day and I love rereading this, looking at the pictures, and remembering how deeply loved I felt that day, by my sweet husband, and by all of our friends and family. Enjoy!

These are my people, the night before our wedding. We are insane, and we are insanely in love with each other.

These are my people, the night before our wedding. We are insane, and we are insanely in love with each other.

SATURDAY, October 19, 2013
It’s Your Wedding Day, Girl

I BARELY SLEPT. I was convinced I’d sleep like a rock because I was so tired and so emotional the night before, but NOPE NOPE NOPE. I laid there and laid there, drifting off, nearing sleep – but then would jerk awake, thinking, OH SHIT GOTTA DO THE THING and then I’d drift off and then OH SHIT THE OTHER THING. Over and over and over, all night.

I woke up completely, in the morning, to Mom whispering in my ear, Well, it’s kinda cold and rainy but it’s going to clear up.


Luckily, after at least a little bit of sleep, I was in a WAY better mood than I had been the night before. I think I just felt better about finally being able to do the work I had been anticipating for so long. For months, I had been planning this wedding, making lists, piling up decorations — and I couldn’t actually complete that tasks. It felt like it weighed over me, and we were going to be on a time crunch since we couldn’t decorate until the actual morning of the wedding. So once I was able to actually make progress, that went a long way to making me feel more prepared, less behind schedule.

The girls and I got up and puttered around, slowly waking up, eating some fruit and packing up the car. We went down to the winery and LORD HAVE MERCY, it was cold – no warmer than 50 degrees. All along, as we planned this wedding, as people said, well, wait if it rains? – I held to this sense of certainty that it would not rain. That no matter what, the weather would be fine by the time of the ceremony. I told Mom and the girls that morning, either it will clear up, which it WILL, or it won’t, and when it comes time that we HAVE to decide, we will. Until then – let’s plan on an outside ceremony.

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