Happy Anniversary!

Wedding Day
July 17, 2010

Dear Danny,

Happy Anniversary. Today we celebrate 9 years and I have been thinking a lot about what I wanted to say for this anniversary. Two things have come to mind that I seek to both cherish and celebrate during this season of life: our chosen bravery and how selfish I feel. Curious right? Here goes…..

Over the course of our marriage we have done incredibly brave things, but they were experiences that we had no other choice. We either weather the storm or succumb to drowning – so we sought courage and weathered it. But really, what choice do we have for two people that wanted a full life together and are as stubborn as they come? We would fight and from the moment that we said yes to marriage, one income living, moving in with family, moving out under uncertainty, double lung transplant, adoption and infertility, job losses and gains – we stood against them with bravery. These were things that were dealt in the cards we were left to play and we played them. Truly, no matter how many times we shuffled that deck, these were the facts and there was no other option besides be brave and walk. So we did.

However since January 2018, we have chosen to be brave. We have looked at things we had hoped for or even dreamt of – several of them seeming impossible. And if they weren’t downright impossible they were likely incredibly unwise – and sought after them. When you spend the first 7 years of your marriage/ the majority of your adulthoods navigating uncertainty at so many turns, it would seem the prudent thing to do is seek a little certainty. Take a breath, take stock, and really make a smart plan for the future. Don’t jump into plans just because you can… jump in because the time is right. This is the story we told ourselves years 2010-2017: we will get to “those things” when the time is right. But truly, it was like we woke up in 2018 and decided that the right time may never come and certainty has never really been a part of our story either. So we chose to do the things we were scared of, the things that were crazy, the things that left folks speechless or imploring us to “be realistic”. We did big things and little things and a bunch in-between. We lived brave out of choice and not force.

And I love that what we found was serious joy, happiness and contentment in the uncertainty. It was a lot of hard work, some heartbreak, and a few things we are still waiting to pan out – while others the door of opportunity has slammed in our face. But whether it was our health, our home, looking to expand our family, our careers, our finances – not a single one was wasted time. I know some days it doesn’t feel like that (especially the days where you suddenly find yourself back in IV treatments or watching the class of recruits you were slated for from the sidelines) – but just think how we did thrive through both wins and losses. We have juggled more, managed more, conquered more, and lost the least amount of ground of progress in years….. and like true fighters who grow stronger as that muscle memory kicks in, we aren’t stopping. Somehow when we are given the chance to take something off our plate – we don’t anymore. We couldn’t afford that life before between health, medical needs, finances – we had to be careful and smart-but now we are more comfortable and yet we have not stopped. And the pain and hard work has only made us happier….. who knew?!?!? That perfect time may never have come and we have succeeded as couple in the imperfect, even when things didn’t go as we thought. Our life isn’t slowing down one bit with uncertainty – but our mix of chosen and circumstantial bravery isn’t either and I am so proud of us.

So to the selfish part…. as funny as this may sound, especially from the least private of the two of us, I have felt this huge need to be selfish with how I share us. Whether its the updates of what is going on, being open on #BessetteDaily, how much bigger things feel or how much busier we seem – but the time we have together feels so precious. For the first time I have not been so eager to post what’s going on or even be as social. It feels so strange coming from an extrovert, who thrives on relationships, but this new bravery has also made me want to protect our little world. Maybe it’s the outside thinking we are bit crazy to do it all. Or maybe it’s that we have to spend a lot of focused time being good team members so we can make it all work. Or maybe it’s the reality that with some of the recent challenges our world feels like it could get even harder before the good stuff. But whatever it is, I have been surprised by my need to keep the world at arms length a little more and be in the safety of just our reality. At first I worried what it meant – but instead I have chosen to embrace that it’s a sign of our chosen bravery…. I want to celebrate it with just you and we know what it takes to keep life going despite, dedication to each other above all.

Danny, I am so proud of us….. I love you more than words can say – try as I might – and I have learned the truest meaning of “Have a little faith in me” . I could not be more grateful.

All my love,

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