It was a hectic morning. Oliver had Cyclocross camp at 8:45, Hazel had to be picked up from a sleepover to go to dance camp at 10, baby Hawkeye had a doctor’s appointment at 10:30, Oliver had to be picked up at noon, and Hazel had to be picked up at 1, and taken straight to gymnastics practice. (Yes, I have been informed that my life would be less hectic if my kids would just do less things.) We were up late with the baby, and up again at 4am for another feeding. I usually do the middle of the night feeding, but last night Kullervo could tell I was ridiculously tired, so he fed the baby instead.
Kullervo and I both got up at 7 and did the usual divide and conquer of crazy mornings. We managed to get everybody dressed and fed, the bike loaded in the van, the lunch packed for the one who needed it, water bottles filled, coffee poured, and out the door in time. And we did it without fighting.
It wasn’t until I’d dropped Oliver off and a dear friend texted me to tell me happy anniversary that I realized. Sixteen years. I have been married for sixteen years. Considering that I still sort of feel like a 17 year old most of the time, that’s an awful lot of married life.
And it seems fitting that, with the crazy, hectic, overscheduled life we lead, that the day would sneak in and take the backseat. Like, that is the part of the love story—the part where the love story just is. We just live into it. It’s normal, we take it for granted, we live it, and when we realize the beauty of it, it is all the more special for how truly ordinary it is.
One day, the kids will have moved out, the dog and cats will have passed on, our house that currently feels too small will feel much too large for our needs. I’ll be able to sit on the porch and read a book while I drink my coffee without anybody asking me for a snack. At the end of the workday, we will look at each other and decide if we want to go see a movie and not need to do any advance planning. We’ll just be able to go. One day, we will eagerly anticipate the special things we will plan for each other to celebrate our wedding anniversary.
Today, we made it out the door without arguing. Kullervo buckled Fitz in the car, held open the car door for me, and gave me a kiss before I dashed off for a day of driving kids around.
Sixteen years, and that is probably the best thing I could have gotten—a crazy morning with my beloved, dancing the choreographed logistics of raising five little ones. Maybe it doesn’t seem romantic. Maybe it isn’t exciting. But for me, the pragmatic nature of being married to a man who will make the coffee and the breakfast while I make the lunches and change the diapers while I prepare the formula and water bottles is pretty damned romantic.