Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Better Half

To Bob

February 12, 1994.  Exactly twenty years ago tonight, you pulled a fast one (I’m absolutely sure of the date because I called the GCC Alumni office and asked them to look it up in the archives.)  You snagged two hard-to-get tickets to the annual Faculty Follies show after overhearing that I was interested in going and then told me you’d meet me at the door.  So we’d have to sit together.  And perhaps it might look like we were a thing.  And maybe, just maybe, that would lead to another sit down.  At Rachel’s Roadhouse or Benjamin’s or The Iron Bridge.  (For the record, it was two weeks later at Rachel’s to celebrate my 20th birthday and that’s what I have always considered our first date.  But I digress.)  

Twenty years.  Exactly 7,300 days since we made that first public appearance among our friends and professors on Grove City’s campus and I’ve been your girl ever since.  It was fifteen days before my twentieth birthday.   So for more than half my life now, you’ve been my boy and there’s no question that it’s been the better. 

It’s not because it’s been the easier yin to a troubled yang or the worry-free fraction of the pie chart.  In many ways, it’s been the far harder and more exhausting half of my life.  On many days, I can’t believe we’re still standing.  The year of long-distance dating while I finished school and you started work.  The hard adjustments to early married life when I cried more than I laughed.  The 9 years of waiting for a baby.  The ultrasound that showed 3 beating hearts and nearly stopped ours.  The months of bed rest when you had to settle for being, well, just good friends ;-) The deflated income and the bloated grocery bill.  The days of minimal, minuscule, immeasurable sleep.  The skinny jeans and highlighted hair that gave way to the sweatpants and ball caps. (I might note that your hair, however, hasn't moved an inch in 20 years ;-)  

Then the quiet phone call that ended with the whispered word, cancer.  And the surgery and radiation and prayers for more quiet months between checkups.  And who could forget the chickens?  I think out of everything you’ve shouldered over the last 20 years, those 8 little fuzzballs might have been the most remarkable testament to your steadfast love.  I’m reminded every time I go to collect eggs of how very spoiled I am.     

Looking back on all of the twists and turns we’ve taken since that first sit down in Crawford Hall, I sometimes wonder if I had given you the playbill to our life together on that first night, would you have stayed for the show?  I think the answer is yes.  I think you would’ve said, “This is gonna be crazy, but let’s do it!”  ‘Cause I think you’re awesome like that.  And I think the next twenty years are probably going to make for an unbelievably better 2/3rds which will launch us into an incredibly better 3/4ths.  And it wouldn’t surprise me a bit if we decided to make a run at an astoundingly better 4/5ths.  

Thanks for blessing me as my better half and best friend.  I can’t imagine any other way forward.  

Love you most, 


Twenty Years in Review

The Grover Years:  Feb. 1994- May 1996

Whirlwind Months:  Engagement to Wedding in Aug. 1996

The Western PA Years:  Aug. 1996-Aug. 1999

The Eastern PA Years:  Aug. 1999-Oct. 2004

The Crazy Baby Years:  Nov. 2004-May 2007

The Crazy Kid Years:  May 2007 - present