our dearest kids,
Daddy and I have been together for eighteen years.
I have been kissing Daddy for over half my life!
This is not all that impressive to you guys because Daddy and I have been kissing for ALL of your lives, but believe us - when you grow up, kissing the same person for over half your life is a long, long time.
Now, we aren't claiming to be experts at love...but we do have a lot of the experience in the things that is needed to make one an expert. For example, that 10,000 hours theory? we blow that thing out of the water.
And have great mentors? yep, got those in our parents, grandparents, and lots of friends who have great love and inspire us to continue to work at it no matter what challenges pop up.
And we encourage each other everyday towards the 'deliberate practice,' living out love in more ways than just 'showing up.'
So, in those ways, we have a little bit to offer you, our babies about what we've learned about love.
Mainly, it comes down to two, big things: The first is that there are ups and downs in love.
let me say that again, there are ups and downs - no matter how much you love each other, no matter how amazing it feels in the ups - there will be downs.
Understanding this has been liberating for Daddy and I, because when we've been in the middle of a down, we anchor ourselves in the knowledge that the up is in our future; that we'll get out of this rut or argument or whatever it might be that has us questioning everything about our relationship and get back to a place where nothing makes sense without the other.
And, truly, knowing there are downs in the future has helped us to keep our ups humble. When we're on an up (like we are right now), it can feel invincible - which is amazing and makes up for any of the down parts in the past. it is the bit of life that makes everything better.
But, the ups can also make the downs feel worse than they actually are. So, knowing that the ups are part of a longer track that have lots more ups and downs up ahead, help us to cherish and soak in all that joy but with a sense that we've worked hard to get here and there will be more work to do in the future too. There is no 'we've made it' in love; no ending destination - that's why they say, 'in good times and in bad,' because that is what love is - a long winding path of good and bad.
The other thing we've learned about love is that it takes a willingness to bend. Lots of times on the ride, especially in the transitions to the ups, someone is going to need to be the one to adjust. It shouldn't always be the same someone who is making adjustments - but someone needs to give a little. Otherwise, if there is no bending, it breaks.
It's doing the thing you don't feel like doing because you'd rather bend than break. It's realizing and acknowledging and being grateful when the other person is doing the thing they don't feel like doing to bend rather than break. It's not holding all those bends in a grudge inside your heart to throw out later. It's sharing life's burden of constant adaptation with another person. And in sharing that little bit, you also get to share the incredible gift of life's joy (doubled!) and life's sorrows (halved).
So, babies, the thing about love is it's unpredictable in it's bumpiness but predictable in the way that there will be ups and downs, no matter who your riding partner is. And it's unpredictable in how much you will need to bend, and how often and how much and how often your partner will need to bend...but predictable in the fact that you will need to be flexible and so will your partner.
your parents' love is not perfect, it is messy and hard and beautiful and safe and exciting and familiar...but not at all perfect.
our love is not perfect and never will be.
and our life is not perfect and never will be.
but we will keep choosing to love each other
because sharing this unperfect life together
is worth all of it.
if you learn anything from our love, i hope it's that.
love you forever,
even when you get bigger than us!
mum & dad
mum & dad