Happy 25th birthday to my soulmate, best friend, and one true love! To the man I’ve loved for five years – I’ve been doing a lot of thinking. I’ve come to the realization that there’s a lot I don’t tell you. So, before I get distracted by toddler screams and changing dirty diapers, I want to tell you what’s been fogging up my mind lately. And I’m going to be real… and raw.
Life has altered incredibly since my 18-year-old self met you. Over five years, we’ve had a falling out early on, rekindled our relationship, got engaged, married, bought a house in an amazing neighborhood, and gave birth to a beautiful 7 pound 4 ounce baby girl. One year has passed of being parents! (High five!)
And with that, there’s just one thing I want to express to you – I love you.
It’s pretty rare that you deny me your help with household chores or baby duties, no matter how bad you crave relaxation. I know you’d rather be lounging in the recliner, soda in hand, and fully indulged in ESPN. Meanwhile you’re thinking, what relaxation? I hear ya – wasn’t it nice being able to ACTUALLY Netflix and chill before parenthood took over our lives? Sigh.
Don’t get me wrong, I love being a mama. Let’s face it though, this parenting thing can be… well, hard. The transition hasn’t been easy on our relationship, although we do a damn good job at making it appear that way. The mental exhaustion of being a parent consumes this life we created together. Once upon a time, we spent our weekends socializing with friends over MANY Bud Lights and Goldschlager shots. We spent money on luxury items for ourselves because we were, well… kidless.
A mini version of you and I now occupies all of our time, with food-caked hair and peanut butter hands. Sticky floors, dirty dishes, and stained carpets add a personal touch to our home. A once neatly decorated living room has evolved into a disastrous toy room. Laundry tends to smell like wet dog from sitting too long in the washer. And the clothes never make it to our closet – hung up, folded and organized. The kitchen? I have officially given up on ever having a clean kitchen.
Thank you for supporting me and my OCD. I’m constantly picking up kids’ toys and placing them in their rightful places, just for the cleanliness to be destroyed within seconds. Our vehicle, with once shiny leather seats are now covered in dried milk. The stains in the carpet could practically make out an intricate puzzle. The center counsel is filled with receipts, loose change, toddler snacks, an old Culver’s cup, an extra sippy cup, crumpled up shopper’s news and the remains of my previously organized life.
Speaking of this mess of a stage… It’s even more difficult when our daughter never stops. Our daily routine goes something like this: wake up at 5am, make bottle, change diaper, put kid in high chair to quickly run to the bathroom, dart out to kid hanging halfway out of high chair, the recently cooked breakfast is scattered across the kitchen floor, kid blows out diaper, find out later it’s all over our bed, kid pukes everywhere, throw a load of laundry in, give kid bath… all before 7AM. Did I mention I stayed up late the night before “getting shit done”? Sigh again.
Being a parent means drowning in the daily chaos of parenthood, yet loving every minute of it. Life was so much easier prior to being a parent, but it was also unexciting, boring and to be quite frank – ordinary. Nonetheless, this chaos has brought us closer as a couple. We appreciate the short time we have together, which is usually crawling into bed at the end of a long day. Even though we’d rather scroll through social media admiring the perfect lives of our fellow kidless “friends” rather than talk about our deranged day. Someday folks, some day.
Sometimes talking takes too much effort. And thats OK.
You know what though? If I could choose a different life, one that’s more put together than the life I’m living now – I wouldn’t. We beat all of the odds to be together. So, I LIKE chaotic. Chaotic means I’m LIVING life with those I love the most. Sometimes we have doubts, times of trial and tribulation, moments of frustration and sadness. If there’s anything in this world that you doubt, don’t ever doubt my love for you. Chaotic means more spills, messes, and stains, but more importantly, it means more love, happiness, and memories.
Through all the chaos, sleepless nights, and early mornings – I’ll need you. I need your immense patience to make up for my lack thereof. You’re rarely upset about my underestimation of time, followed by my perpetual lateness.
Thank you for admiring me when I’m bumming in my sweats for an entire day, without a touch of makeup on my face, while singing to Mickey Mouse Clubhouse… and actually enjoying the tune. I FEEL the sincerity in your eyes when you tell me I’m beautiful through the dark stains under my eyes.
I need you now and I’ll need you for the remainder of my entire life. I’ll need you when our kids march happily into Kindergarten, leaving me alone in the hallway with arms wide open, eyes closed, and lips perched. I’ll need you when they’re ‘too cool’ for mommy’s kisses. I’ll need you when they come home crying from the mean kids at school. I’ll need you when I comfort them, then disappear into the bathroom for fifteen minutes – sobbing from the pain I feel for them.
I’ll need you when our daughter finds her first boyfriend and she’s pressured to do things detrimental to her healthy, wholesome little heart. I’ll need my partner in crime when we play detective by questioning the boyfriend on his entire life story before he steps foot in our house. Us mamas need that sense of security knowing we’re being good mamas, so I’ll need you to hold me and tell me I’m doing the right thing.
I’ll need you when we drop them and their 18 years of belongings off at college. You know I’ll want to stay, refusing to leave them and their naïve minds alone… without me. I know it won’t be easy, but could you promise to hold my hand through these moments?
When our daughter finds her Prince Charming and decides to start a life of her own, I’ll be here for you. As you give our first born baby away, I’ll dry your tears. I’ll hold you as our stunning bride vows to her best friend for eternal happiness. We’ll see the beautiful cycle of life through our daughter’s eyes, as she brings us the gift of grand babies. I know you’ll need me, like I need you.
The truth is: I’ll never stop needing you.
So, while we’re in this weird stage of life called parenting, let’s cherish every sticky mess and chaotic moment. God knows it won’t last long, but I want you to know that I will always need you. I need you now and I’ll need you 50 years from now.
Here’s to letting the laundry pile up and freeing the ungodly amount of toys from their designated storage. Here’s to having a drink together after the kids are in bed just to feel young again. Here’s to giggling while chasing each other around the house and putting our game faces on, when a playful game of dodgeball erupts in the living room.
At the end of the day, all that really matters is how much we love and how hard we laugh. We will be the living proof of our daughter’s definition on love; We need to be good parents, but even better role models. Here’s to us. Here’s to a lifetime full of a goofy, messy, unconditional love.
As my wedding vows stated, “I promise to remember that neither one of us is perfect, but strive to remind myself of the ways we are perfect for each other. I promise to love you and all that you’re yet to be.” You’re handsome, loving, strong, compassionate, and the best daddy I could ever imagine.
Happy 25th birthday to the kindest person I have ever met. “This life will go by, in the blink of an eye, but I wouldn’t want to have it without you by my side.”
With all of my love,
Your Wife <3