On July 28th Matt and I will celebrate our 10th wedding anniversary. This is big. This is real big. A DECADE big. In ten years we have graduated college, lived in three different houses, had three children, worked full time, owned 10 different cars, 6 dogs, and 2 cats. Financially, things were difficult in the beginning- WIC checks, Save-A-Lot, chicken thighs, and Ramen noodles. Our house was a joke- drums in the living room, a leopard print covered couch, a white vinyl chair, green linoleum, white metal kitchen cabinets. Of course we now look back at those difficult times and get a little nostalgic. If you don't mind, I would like to journey back in time.
The year- 1995
"I don't want to be a cheerleader. I quit. I want to be alternative. Let's go to the thrift store and pick out some really ugly shirts. Then we will look so grunge."
Okay, so I set the scene. I was in the "I want to be different" phase, when along came Matt. He was so grunge. And all his friends were grunge. And they had piercings and blue hair and listened to Smashing Pumpkins and Nirvana. You get the picture. Then somehow, one day, Matt came over to my house. I guess you could call it our first date. We sat on my bedroom floor and watched a marathon of "My So Called Life." We connected. I don't know how many weeks we dated, but then I did him wrong, and his "band" went on to sing about what a "bleep" I was at the Battle of the Bands. I was there. In the crowd. Wearing the Hershey Kiss shirt he bought me from the thrift store. That was the end of us. Four years later, we reconnected.
The year- 1998-1999I don't know if you know this, but St. Johns River Community College is actually just a place where you pay money to smoke cigarettes and sit on benches. At least that's what is was for most of us. During my first semester at Smokers Community College, Matt and I started hanging out with some of the same people. Yep. There was definitely still a connection. Googly eyes, sitting too close, bumping shoulders. After a camping trip with friends, we couldn't hide our affection for each other any longer. Despite being burned by me in the past, Matt swallowed his pride, and decided to give us another chance.
The year- 2000Even though we had two more years of college to complete, we decided to get married. My mom will deny this now, but my curfew was 11:00 pm on school nights. I found this curfew to be ridiculous. I was a college student, not a sophomore in high school. I'm not saying that my early curfew was the reason we got married so young, but I will say it didn't help. Matt and I were inseparable, and we could not think of any reason why we shouldn't just tie the knot. So we did. Karl Flagg led the ceremony which was held in the Ravine Gardens. A family of raccoons watched on from a nearby oak tree, as our guests cursed under their breath for having to endure such extreme heat. I'm sorry by the way. The reception was held at the Golf Course. There was live music and dancing and drinking. A perfect night!
The year- 2002-2007Kids, kids, and more kids. I lost my mind a little bit. Sorry, babe. Hormones and all, not to mention, genetics. I got through it, thanks to him. We took vacations, we took pictures- lots of them, we bought stuff, we made stuff, we loved the kids, we loved each other.
The year- 2008-2010Things got easier. Not so many crises. The kids became more self-sufficient. Matt got more chill. I got more stable. Money, not so tight. We smiled more, we laughed more, we did more.
Present DayToday is just another day in our marriage. I am home with Josie and Lucas. Matt is out fishing on the kayak with Hayden. When he gets home, we will have lunch and talk about things. I'll ask him to build me something or sign something and he will give me that annoyed look, and I'll laugh because I know that I'm being annoying. But that is marriage. It is about annoyances. Like hearing your partner slurp his/her coffee. But it is more about love. Like saving enough coffee for your partner to have a second cup. And that is Matt. He loves me and saves me coffee and slurps his own. And I love him, more than butterflies:)