Last week, February 15th to be exact, Dave and I celebrated our 20th Wedding Anniversary. I spent the afternoon watching our wedding video. I wanted to watch it before everyone got home so I would be able to better anticipate the parts I could fast forward through…the parts I thought the kids would lose interest in when I showed it to them in the evening. I was not prepared for how emotional it would be to watch this video I hadn’t seen in 20 years even considering it was filmed with old grainy VHS tape technology. To see my grandmothers still alive as well as other dear family friends who are no longer with us. To have all of my friends and family gathered in one place, all of whom I cherish, and many of whom are still involved in my life on a daily basis. To listen to my amazingly talented friends sing…my sister, the soloist. To watch my beautiful parents watch me. To see my brother so handsome in all his 16 years, escort my grandmothers out of the church. To watch my brother-in-law and sister-in-law cracking up at the kids getting married – a preview to the kids having kids. I couldn’t help but get teary over all of it.
And to simply stare at my husband…in absolute awe…that he is still standing right next to me. My handsome guy with the beautiful, genuine smile. The big hazel-green eyes that turn down at the edges in a self-deprecating, Hugh Grant, kind of way. My solid, driven, intelligent, committed, kind, thoughtful, and funny guy. My guy who everyday I appreciate and love even more. My guy who puts up with my energetic and bossy ways.
When you get married, especially, I believe, at the very young age of 24, you say those words “forever” and “for life” and “til death do us part” but I don’t think there’s any real context to them. You say them because that’s what you say at weddings. But when you find yourself, 20 years later, looking back you realize that what you have with your husband is something amazing. Something incredible. Something unique to just the two of you. You’ve built a life together. You’ve shared many firsts together – first car, first “real” job, first house, first pregnancy, first birth, first illness, first death. You now have three wonderful children together. Your favorite time of day is after the kitchen has been cleaned up, and the kids are in bed, when it’s just the two of you and you simply talk to each other, listen to each other, or just sit there in silence next to each other. And you know how amazing it will still be after the kids have grown and it’s just the two of you again…another part of your life to build.
My two eldest got a kick out of watching the video. “Mom, you’re so cute. You look so young!!” To which I thought, “And what do I look like now? Old?” I have no context. I look at that girl in the video and think I still look like her and yet I’m no longer her. They loved watching their grandparents on the video. My Mom so beautiful in her turquoise dress, my father cutting it up on the dance floor, my mother-in-law dancing with her son, and my father-in-law’s voice cracking as he gave the first toast. They loved watching my friends, dancing and singing, many of whom are now parents to their friends.
Thank you to all of you who were there on that beautiful day – especially to my parents who made the day possible – and thank you to those of you who’ve joined us along the way and helped make our life and our relationship what it is today. xoxo Carrie
Here’s a quick little trip down memory lane I put together with some highlights.
Thank you to Libby and her sweet Mom and my friend, Myreen – whom we miss so much – for capturing our day on video.