Family photo 2013

Family photo 2013

Monday, November 30, 2015

20 years down, a few more to go...

In October we celebrated our 20 year Togetherversary, which is, quite frankly, a whole barrel o' monkeys more fun than celebrating our actual wedding anniversary. (You may or may not recall that our vows uttered within the restrictive confines of The Cult were less than blissfully climactic. Oh, the regrets we weave when obliviously mesmerized by a charismatic speaker showering his dutiful audience with equal parts spit, promises and threats from behind the powerful pulpit.) 

Back to our togetherversary. 20 years! We felt it was worth celebrating so we did it up right with a single night at a local hotel in town. Can you say, indulgent? The hotel was booked strictly on its merits. The place had robes. Robes! Well, precisely a solitary robe hanging limply in the closet. Lap of Luxury, I'd like to introduce you to the Deutsches. Pleased to make your acquaintance. I think we'll pull up a chair and stay a while.

In true Bob and Tisha fashion, we shopped at pawn shops for a 20 year ring for me as my wedding ring is highly impractical and not something I wear on regular occasions...such as daily life. These hands, they work. They love the dirt and the kitchen and scrubbing the porcelain until it shimmers. A fancy ring with a million prongs just won't do. I wanted something practical yet pretty. Reasonable yet shiny. Sturdy and meaningful and elegant and appropriate for my days spent on the prairie as a devout homesteader wannabe. We found the perfect one to commemorate the milestone. The gratitude trickled beyond the rims of my eyes. 

It was a beautiful, brisk day. We had dinner at Jose Muldouns in our workout wear after hiking around Palmer Park to perpetuate the perception of lavishness we were so firmly establishing as part of our New Reality. Go sweaty or go home, that's what we always say. 

We filled up our carts and spent gift cards given to Bobby at work as performance bonuses throughout the year at Marshall's and Tj Maxx in greater amounts than we ever would had we been using our bank account. 

Truly, it was divine. One of the best 24 hour segments of my life.

It started me thinking about 20 years together and all that has happened and all that we've seen and all that we've endured and grown and suffered through. 

In 20 years I've realized he's not the man I thought he was and he's come to know I'm not the woman he expected. 

He is more, better, bigger and greater and more capable and willing and brave and accommodating than I knew. He can take on just about anything and maneuver his way through, forging a path where none exists. He can build it all and envision artful masterpieces in his brilliant, creative mind then turn them into reality and work like a horse night and day. His selflessness knows no bounds as he relinquishes the reins of his paycheck month after month, year after year to the hands of his family to devour without as much as a murmur of complaint. He has amazed me with his skill and his tenacity and his grit. 

We have disappointed each other too with our lofty expectations unmet and our ideals dashed and our tempers flaring and our weakest portions of frail, selfish, unrelenting, stubborn humanity seeping out all over the tapestry of our interwoven days. 

There have been tears of joy and tears of sorrow. We have said goodbye to beloved people and beloved pets and hello to setbacks and goodbye to money and hello to stress and goodbye to tranquility and hello to family life in its fullest. There has been mourning and rejoicing and exposing and owning our flaws and accepting what is and apologizing for what we are not capable of becoming because our flesh simply won't comply. 

Our friendship has flourished and faltered as we have faced down giants together and divided to foolishly conquer our ally by taking aim at one another. The lines have grown on our faces and we have smiled and laughed and danced and witnessed triumph and defeat, the darkness of winters and the renewed hope of first blooms and the sun sitting radiant on our skin. Barren seasons and flourishing green and bountiful harvests have been part of our landscape.

We have won and we have lost we have found and we have renewed and we have dug deep when we didn't feel like it and we have woken up to the smell of coffee, faces still blotchy with the battle of the night before and we have made the pancakes and kissed the kids' heads and decided it was all worth clinging to nomatter what. 

That's what 20 years has brought us. 

Life lived, love earned. The sweet and the salty. The mundane and the ordinary and the extraordinary.

Thanks Bobby for being my partner in this wild ride. Every time I think I couldn't love you more, I can't help myself, I just do.

(No selfies because they don't make sticks long enough for these 41 year old faces.)

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