Last year we stood in a church unable to fight back the 105 degree muggy Nebraska summer, and as I fought to stay vertical, partly ecstatic and partly weak from having just moved and the 6 months of wedding planning (please, people, just elope), my heart was pulled in two directions--forward toward my fiancee, and back to my family sitting in the pews thinking about my grandmother; she was in a bad accident 1 mile from the church the day before, trying to make it to rehearsal. I won't go on about that, seeing her in the ICU at the hospital and the continuing rehabilitation, because in my mind this is a year full of fantastic possibilities, no, full of fantastic definites.
We're FINALLY getting settled in this summer and it feels so good. Grad school puts so much on hold during the academic year--and it shouldn't, but it does--taking a large mental and finally physical toll on you. But the house is looking good, the garden very good, and I'm lucky to be here with this person--even though I'm not the easiest man to shack up with. There's a lot you learn about yourself and the world when you're married, and sometimes the lessons are hard, sometimes blissful, but always worthwhile.
The above picture is certainly my favorite, not because of how we look, but because of how she looks. It's the picture we sent out on our thank you notes, and so I'll send my own: Jackie, thanks for finding me in Ohio only 3 months before I moved west, sticking out the rocky road of a two year long-distance relationship, moving out here to Nebraska and acting on faith, and for being my best friend (and for having the same taste in art, for liking my writing, for trying your hardest to memorize names of plants in the garden like you learned counting in French...).