Nine years ago, Mattie and I said I do to one another. Before family and friends we made the commitment to be together through good times and bad, sickness and health, and the slew of traditional vows. I could say that it has all be sunshine and rainbows and unicorns, but that would be a lie and everyone would know it. Marriage is work. It is hard work. It takes sacrifice and humility and a lot of responsibility. There are plenty of times we have gone to bed angry. There have been plenty of times we have had, as my uncle who performed our marriage ceremony says, "moments of intense fellowship". There have been plenty of times that we have had to stop mid argument and confirm that while we are really upset or mad or angry, the commitment is still there, we are still willing to work together to make this work. The truth is, as we grow (as all humans do), so does our relationship. The hope is that we continue to grow alongside each other. Sometimes that means I grow a bit, like when I got my Masters in 2008. Sometimes that means Mattie grows a bit, like right now when he is getting his Masters. We have to sacrifice and take from one another, lead and follow, and take moments to walk side by side to enjoy the blessings we have. Our life has been work and will continue to be work. But it is good work. We have affirmed over and over again that we are willing to do anything to make our family work. Taking jobs, moving positions, rearranging our family responsibilities, giving one another time to pursue commitments that are beneficial for us all, carving time for the whole family, piecing together time for one another, it seems kind of messy in the midst of it all, but looking back at the last nine years, it has had a really good flow to it. We are not on the road we thought we would be on nine years ago, but this road is better than we ever could have imagined. I am excited to make our first steps through our 10th year together and cannot wait to see what is in store for us next.
On a more casual note, we really enjoyed dinner at Mark's tonight. The salad was ok, but the entrees and dessert were supreme. I had the prime rib/American Kobe beef rib special that was served with a loaded baked potato side. I have had Kobe beef before and didn't care for it, this was better. I like that instead of having chunks of marbling like a ribeye, the fat sort of coats the entire muscle fiber in an entirely delectable way. The loaded baked potato was diced potato that was combined with all the traditional fixings so it was creamy, but had all of the delicious flavors of sour cream, bacon, cheese, and green onion. Matt's steak was probably the best filet I ever had. A perfect cut of meat that was cooked to a perfect Medium rare. I enjoyed both desserts, but always like the raspberry shortbread tart that is crumbly, but soft and buttery, and love the pistachio ice cream that comes with it. It was also nice to be surprised with writing on my plate, even if it did say Happy 8th Anniversary. I forgave the pastry chef though because an iPad Mini, courtesy of Mattie came along with it!
It was a great day and I really hope (for more reasons than the food and gift) it sets a great precedence for the year!