n a day like today, my husband and fledgling tennis partner, I wish you the happiest of birthdays. Despite those bad things I said that one time when I was really really upset about that one thing... I love you with heart, mind, body, and soul and I wouldn't change who you are or what we've become for anything. You've been my husband for s-e-v-e-n years (this month!), my fiancé before that, my missionary before that, my boyfriend before that, and my best friend even before that. I love that you'll play tennis with me, even though I'm pretty awful, and you're rather terrible. We lose half the balls we bring, and our two brains together are barely intelligent enough to figure out the scoring. On the court we are nothing short of disastrous. But you play with me anyway, and you cheer when I win, because you know it makes me insurmountably happy to swing wildly at things with a racket. That pretty well sums up the kind of man you are, living with the kind of woman I am, and why life with you just seems to work (even if you have to duck now and then). If your mother were alive today, I'd kiss her on the mouth and thank her repeatedly for carrying you safely into this world some 29 years ago. It's strangely comforting to think even though you were nearly 10 years overdue in your parents' eyes, you were born at exactly the right time and in the right place in order for me to stand right behind you in the 2nd grade luau while your mom filmed us completely pummeling the Hawaiian hu ke lau. With that, we don't need any more proof that it was always meant to be. Even today, I am still right behind you and your mother is smiling so proudly from a short distance. Your family is cheering you on and your friends are going through the same motions you are. You are becoming more like your dad with every year, and I am just fine with that because it's obvious to me where your entire arsenal of endearing qualities comes from. To celebrate, let's fly far far away and get lost in the woods.
P.S. When we have children, I will refrain from embarrassing you like this and will aim to devote our entire blog to diaper blow-outs and the first day's of kindergarten. That's a promise.