Tomorrow Martha and I will celebrate our 22nd anniversary together. It seems impossible that we are old enough to be celebrating a number that big.
Of course, I use the word "celebrate" rather loosely. Martha does not have a romantic bone in her body. I doubt she’ll even remember, unless she gets the mail when my mother’s card arrives. My mother always remembers.
We are expecting phenomenal weather here this holiday weekend, sunny in the 80s. We have not yet closed our lake cabin and we are planning to go there and enjoy the mountain fall foliage. I will remind her of the anniversary and we will go to a nice restaurant in town and toast each other with our water glasses.
We will sit in our Adirondack chairs overlooking the now quiet lake like two old friends and reminisce about our years together. We will remember my father who died on the same date, six years ago. I’ll cry. She’ll hold my hand until I stop. And we will snuggle up together and comment on how fucking lucky we have been.
We have had some very good years. We have also had some very trying times. We have argued and fought and made up. We almost broke up but instead did the work to heal the wounds. We have raised two amazing daughters, or more accurately, they raised us. We have survived some serious health crises and suffered a few difficult family situations. We have shared profound intimacies, enjoyed friends, travelled and grown. We have taken care of each other and supported our separate and joint dreams. We have loved each other and kept each other warm through it all.
I am sometimes sad when I acknowledge that she is not the love of my life. Not my soul mate. Not the person I had planned on spending my life with. Yet she is the one who I have shared my life with. And I have enjoyed all that she has brought to my life and everything she has made possible for me.
She still makes me laugh.
She is still my best friend.
And her kiss still makes me swoon.
The universe has been very generous to me and I am exceedingly grateful .