This weekend Sam and I will celebrate our 13th wedding anniversary.
I know what you are thinking.
Yes, I was a child bride. A divorced, child bride.
Not what you were thinking? Maybe more along the lines of "I can't believe he has put up with her shit for 13 years?" Yeah, well......that too. I can't really believe it either. He is a saint, I think we can all agree. It is important to note that besides being a total pain in the ass like it's my job, I also completely adore him and spend a lot of time telling everyone how hot he is. So I do have my benefits.
And marriage in itself has it's benefits - legally, financially, and emotionally.
One of the things I like most about being married is that I have someone to help carry the load, so to speak. And by that I mean someone to kill the really gross bugs, pull the plug if I'm in a coma, take out the trash and pick up the dog poop.
That list is in no particular order.
One of the things I like most about my husband (and this is separate from our marriage. These are things that I would like about him even if he hadn't made an honest woman out of me) is his willingness to go along with whatever the hell dumbass ideas I come up with.
For instance, the man has had to renew his wedding vows twice already.
With ministers and everything.
And the second time we renewed our vows, I actually interrupted the ceremony for some clarification. I wasn't sure what the minister meant by "respect". Did he mean respect like "Woman, you best show me some RESPECT." Or did he mean respect like "Honey, I have so much respect for the fact that you are willing to pooper scoop."
This year, I'm not going to make him reaffirm his love and devotion and legal obligations, but I am making him host a party - which quite frankly is a better way to test his commitment to both our marriage and pooper scooping than a vow renewal would be.
Tonight is our semi-annual anniversary party. We used to hold them every year, but for our 10th anniversary I had surgery scheduled, and then the next year I was sick again, and then last year....really we were too busy celebrating the fact that I didn't need anti-nausea suppositories to plan a party. Long story short, we took a break - just from the parties you understand, not from our marriage. And this year? THIS year I delayed what is now referred to as "my autumnal convalesence" until October and we are back on track. Lucky thirteen, baby! And getting right back into the swing of things means having a huge screaming fight in the front yard with lots of swearing and hand gestures like we did last night.
What? That's not how YOU celebrate your love?
Listen. The last time we had an anniversary party, we were in the middle of a home remodel. A home remodel that involved plumbing. And toilets. And a lot of swearing. But we learned our lessons, which is how truly great marriages go the distance. We can look at what doesn't work, and fix it, and then move on. Unless it involves plumbing. We can't fix that. Which is why we have made the decision to not allow plumbing to come between us. We now hire professionals to handle the plumbing, while we just handle each other.
(ba DUM dum!)
This year the bathrooms all appear to be in good working order. (But just in case, pee before you come, okay? And in this land of sun and fun we never flush for number one!) So with major home repairs out of the way, this year was all about the yard. The yard is actually not too bad these days - and I figured that with a little effort it would be great, and then we could have our friends over and everything would be just LOVELY. But the yard seemed a little plain. A little boring. It needed a little je ne sais quoi.
Which in English means water feature.
Which is how I ended up way out on the North Shore, driving down a road that had a sign that said "Water Lily Farm". I brought The Hawler, because she is my sidekick when it comes to driving down random country roads following signs and wandering onto private property without permission.
When we arrived at the farm, we walked through the gate and around back because we didn't really know what else to do.The property was quite extensive - several acres - and there were huge man-made ponds filled with water lilies. Hawler spotted someone and waved, and that person stood up and came over.
That person was tall, and very very handsome. And shirtless. He had no shirt.
And then he spoke, and he had an accent, and it was all just very, very lovely indeed. I don't know what his name is, I think I'll call him Fritz.
BUT THE WATERLILIES. We were there for a waterlily to add to a water feature that I was creating for an event I was having at my home that I share with my husband to commemorate the anniversary of the day I married him, my beloved, and OH MY GOD HE IS TAKING OFF HIS PANTS TO GET THE LILY OUT OF THE POND.
As if he had overheard the silent thoughts that were careening around my brain, the nice young man stopped and turned and said (in what is seriously the cutest accent ever) "I will go put on some board shorts, yes?"
YES?! No. No no no. Do not trouble yourself. No board shorts required. Please, don't change on our account.
But he went and changed, and then came back all....well, just all kinds of lovely. And we all walked together to the pond and we decided on a gorgeous waterlily and then he climbed right in that pond and fetched it for little ol' us, and carried it to my car and I handed him the cash - though I really wanted to stuff it right in his board shorts. We both thanked him rather profusely - we were very very grateful indeed.
And then we drove home, stuck the waterlily in a trashcan filled with water, and sort of forgot about it for a few weeks. Until last night. Which is where the screaming and hand gestures comes in. Don't worry, the party is going to be amazing. The water feature? Well.
The waterlily is now pretty much dead. (But the memories live on, Fritz.)
And the water feature is now a garbage can buried in my front yard with a dead water lily floating in it.
Happy Anniversary Sam. I really, really love you a lot and every single day I am grateful for you. You are hot and super sweet and incredibly funny and generous and you let me write about you, and us, and our family and you are a great husband and father and my best friend and incredibly compassionate and patient and loving. And the dog just took a dump by the gate. Could you take care of that? The guests are going to be here soon.
3 hours ago