Today, Josh and I turned six years old. I know that it will make him squirm that I posted a picture of us kissing, but it makes me laugh because it takes me right back to that altar, six years ago. In brief, I told Josh the week before we got married that we needed to practice our wedding kiss. We proceeded to perfect it throughout the week. When it came time for the actual "you may kiss the bride moment," I kind of got nervous and embarrassed and thought that everyone would know that we had practiced the kiss and I started laughing as Josh leaned in. (Fun fact about me: I laugh when I get embarrassed.) So Josh waited a moment and then tried to kiss me again and I think it worked the second time. I really have no recollection of the kiss from our wedding other than my laughing. So, the joke in our marriage is that Josh likes to sidle up to me when I'm laughing, kiss me on the teeth and say, "Just like our wedding day." And when I try to fake him out and shut my mouth really tight, he tickles me and makes me laugh and then kisses me and he still gets to say, "Just like our wedding day." It's so unfair.
I know six isn't a lot of years to be married, but this year, it seems like a lot to us. We've gone through so much heartache this year as we have watched several young marriages around us fail and end in divorce. Two of those people are very, very close to our hearts and let me tell you, we have shed many tears for them as well as for all the others. I do not pretend to be an expert on marriage, but this year, I have very much become an advocate of seeing marriages succeed. Marriage is hard work. Much harder than we can ever be prepared for. And walking away from it isn't an option. Communication is key and it doesn't come naturally. It takes a lot of costly work. A lot of sacrificial work. But the reward is worth it. Vulnerability in a community of people who love you is key, as well. And I don't ever want to think that Josh and I have it all together and that we can make it because we've perfected the art of communication and argument. We haven't....trust me. We're messy and we fight, but we've learned how to reconcile a lot better and forgive one another more readily and to back down a little bit sooner and then we continue walking forward hand in hand. Sorry for the soapbox, but my heart has been burdened with this for some time.
Josh, I love you, and let's look forward to 60 more years. We have a great family.