This past Wednesday, the Mister and I celebrated our third anniversary!
This year, I’m going to write about something a little different.
As you may know, the Mister and I are expecting our first baby in a little over a month. It’s exciting and strange to think that this is our last anniversary as “just us.”
It’s tempting to think our family is just now starting out, but then I remember something the priest at our wedding said during his sermon:
“People will start asking you when you’re going to start your family,” he said. “When they do that, you tell them, ‘It started today.’ Because from now on, the two of you together are a family.”
That stuck with me. And when I look back at the past three years, I realize how much of it has been focused on building the two of us into a strong family.
After all, what’s being a family all about?
- Patience. No matter how much you love somebody, living with them requires patience. I’ve always been on the hot-tempered side, but I’ve chilled out a lot since Year 1 of being married, especially about domestic stuff. It’s made the little daily frustrations a lot easier, and I can feel it shaping me into someone who will be a better parent.
- Making Time. The Mister and I have LOTS of practice at this one, what with the two and a half years he spent going to grad school and working full time. And yet, we know that finding time for each other after children—and spending meaningful time with our children amidst the demands of daily life—is going to get a lot harder.
- Sharing What You Love. We have a tradition that every year on our anniversary we go to our local Brazilian steakhouse and eat like kings (Seriously. Fogo de Chao. It’s the greatest.). However, even though the food is amazing, the food itself isn’t the point. The point is to celebrate an important day doing something we both love (we share an abiding passion for good food). This year, I was super excited that Baby got to share in the tradition, and if the wild kicks in my tummy were anything to judge by, Baby was excited too. ^.^
- Making a gift of self. Marriage challenges you to approach life with a new generosity of spirit, but parenthood flat-out demands it. When I got married, my life wasn’t just about me anymore. And when baby makes three, the sharing will stretch even further. Motherhood is definitely a gift of self, but it’s building on a lesson that marriage taught me first.
- Creating a Home. I’ve always believed that the difference between a house and a home is the difference between a place and a person. I loved our first little newlywed apartment, but I wasn’t that choked up when we left. After all, my reason for loving it was moving right along with me. Soon, I hope our baby will able to share in the feeling of home that the Mister and I have created with each other.
Long story short, I’m pretty darn proud of my two-person family, which is part of why I’m so excited for it to grow! So when our first Little Miss or Little Mister makes their appearance come January, I’ll remind myself that my family isn’t beginning—it’s getting bigger. And I think I can speak for both the Mister and me when I say: