Friday, May 2, 2008

The Gift of Wood

Today is a big day for my husband and me.

It is our five year wedding anniversary.


We are actually about five hours away from home at a roadside motel. We are going to his cousin's college graduation this morning. As far as anniversaries go, this is definitely not the most glamorous.


For two of our anniversaries, we have been in Mexico at an upscale all-inclusive. For the others, we have gone to nice hotels, spas with massages and plush robes galore. We don't usually give each other gifts, considering the trips and hotel stays as our present to each other.

This year, his cousin's graduation fell on this particular weekend and, of course, there will be no Mexico trips during this pregnancy. The end result is that last night, we spent the night in a small double bed. As I was pulling back the sheets, there was the lovely surprise of a small black bug crawling between them. There is some suspicious yellow sludge on the wall. I am not a snob, but this motel is definitely not on the list of "will returns."

By now, you are probably thinking that I have already returned to my whiny pregnancy state. Actually, quite the opposite. I wasn't expecting a spa hotel, so I brought my own flip flops for the nasty shower and didn't even look twice when I stepped into it this morning. I brought my own pillow and blanket for the bed. I laughed as my husband gently captured what was most likely a bed bug in a plastic cup and brought it outside. It was almost kind of romantic cuddling in a double bed instead of sprawled two feet apart in our king sized one at home.

When we woke up this morning, on this day of celebrating five years of marriage, my first thought was that it can't possibly have been such a long time. It seems like moments ago that I woke up on another Saturday in May, flinging open the curtains to reveal a typical gray and drizzly Northwest morning. I turned to my three bridesmaids, who had shared the room and my last night as a single gal with me, and yelled, "It's a beautiful day! I'm getting married!"

And yet, sometimes, I feel as if we have been together forever. We aren't just husband and wife, we are best friends. We have laughed and cried together, and luckily, the tears have been outweighed by the smiles. There have been many wonderful highs and a few crushing lows, but we've made it through both. And it what I feel has been the true test of our marriage, infertility, actually brought us closer and made our relationship stronger.

The traditional five year anniversary gift is wood. So, my gift for my husband this year is a wooden picture frame with three pictures in it. The first is a picture taken just seconds after we were engaged, the second is a picture taken from our most recent trip to Mexico. The third is the 3D ultrasound picture of our son. I labeled the pictures with three simple words. Past. Present. Future.

We have been through so much together. From holding hands as we signed the paperwork, buying our first house, to holding each other in a small obstetrician's office and trying to come to terms with the death of our fifth baby, we have been there for each other for all of our past. We stand together now, still holding each other, as we prepare for the newest chapter in our lives together. This side of parenthood will no doubt challenge us as nothing has before. But I believe that like all of the challenges before us, this one will make us laugh. Make us cry. And make us stronger.

So even though we are in a crappy motel, this might go down as our best anniversary to date. To my husband, M, I love you with all of my heart. Thank you for our past, present, and future.

20 comments:

Jen said...

Happy Anniversary!

That sounds like the perfect present.

Kathy V said...

Happy Anniversary. That sounds like such a sweet gift with the past present and future. I teared up while reading. (but these days everything makes me do that.) But it really was sweet. Sorry you had to spend it in such a "nice" hotel but atleast the two of you were toghether and that is the most important part.

My Reality said...

Happy Anniversary!

Fertilized said...

Happy Anniversary Katie! SO touching!

Baby Steps to Baby Shoes said...

Awww, you made me cry. 'course it doesn't take much these days. Happy Anniversary to both of you and may your marriage continue to be blessed with much love.

Samantha said...

Happy Anniversary!

P.S. Hope you don't take any bedbugs home with you!

Susan said...

Congratulations on your five year anniversary!

BrownEyedGirl said...

Happy Anniversary Hun!!!

Waiting Amy said...

Happy Anniversary (bed bugs and all)!!

My DH and I did a similar thing -- going away for our anniversary weekend the first few years. Then life took over and we haven't really been able to do it again. But I really cherish those memories, and you will too -- no matter where they are made.

Geohde said...

Happy anniversary :)

J

Road Blocks and Roller Coasters said...

Happy Anniversary!!!

G said...

Happy Anniversary!

Adriane said...

Happy Anniversary! The story of bugs gave me the heebie-jeebies! Hope you get to Mexico next year!!! What a sweet gift to your hubby!

waitinginline said...

HAPPY ANNIVERSARY!!!

Ally said...

Happy Anniversary and many happy returns!

I loved your gift idea and I may have to steal it...I'll be at five years this December. (I'd totally give you complete credit for the idea and I won't do it if you tell me no!)

Tracy said...

What a sweet post!!!

And you are a better woman than me. I would have slept in the clean car.

Joy said...

How sweet! I love hearing love stories!!! Eew about the bed bug...

Mel said...

Happy 5th anniversary!

Laura said...

Happy Anniversary!

JuliaS said...

Happy Anniversary!