Oh, the pressure's on, to write something so romantic and overwhelming to honor the love of my life turning 40. My creativity is faltering a bit, so I will start with the words from the card that I bought for him and see where I'm led from there.....
ONE OF MY FAVORITE THINGS
ABOUT BEING MARRIED TO YOU
IS WATCHING TIME DEEPEN
THOSE QUALITIES THAT I FELL IN LOVE WITH
RIGHT FROM THE START.
IT SEEMS LIKE EACH BIRTHDAY
FINDS YOU EVEN RICHER IN
THE GENTLE STRENGTH
AND EASY KINDNESS
THAT HAVE ALWAYS BEEN
THE HEART OF WHO YOU ARE.
YOU ARE A GOOD MAN
WHO JUST KEEPS GETTING BETTER
AND YEAR AFTER YEAR,
I KEEP LOVING YOU MORE.
I almost feel like this card is a little understated in what I wanted to communicate, but on the other hand, it's oh so true. John embodies "Gentle Strength and Easy Kindness" - you see it every day from the way he laughs with the Starbucks barista to how he firmly, but lovingly reprimands Brayden.
I fell in love with John because of how he encouraged me, how he continuously set my gaze upon Christ, for how he made me laugh, and smile, for how I felt like I was the center of his universe (apart from God), for how I trusted his goals - and what I believed he would be like as a father, for his humility - and the many life lessons he'd triumphed through by the age of 23, - I've said it before, but to consider any other man besides John Riley would have felt like I'd have forever settled for less (and yes, frequent dreams of such a thing still haunt me to this day). And now, nearly 13 years later, I find this list of things I love about him even longer, even richer, even deeper.
Without sounding "full of myself" - I am SO PROUD to be married to this man. I am so proud to be at his side, for folks to know - "Oh, YOU are married to HIM!" And to be able to say that - Wow, how blessed I am.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY, MY LOVE - and just as Jeff toasted at our wedding day, may my biggest gift to you be the knowledge of the pride I have in being your wife......
P.S. HAPPY 40TH BIRTHDAY TO YOU, TOO, JEFF!!!!