Sometimes I feel like you are the one without a voice in our relationship. You long ago ditched your social media, and even such a little thing makes me feel like I talk all the time in places you never visit. When we are with strangers I am the extrovert, making conversation and meeting new people while you smile and nod and speak when you can, mostly choosing to listen. Getting together with my family is a non-stop train of words swirling around you as you contentedly sit in the midst of the whirlwind.
Yet in your quietness you speak louder than I ever could. The thing I most appreciate about you from this past year is how good of a listener you are. You truly stop everything and listen - whether it's to me or a homeless man near Walmart or a wedding vendor, you tune out the surroundings and hear every word they say. You are concerned with one thing - the person behind the words - and it is truly obvious in every interaction.
In your quietness, you have taught me so much. From you I have learned to be abundantly generous, not only with our money but with our time, because where I can hold close the things I have, you freely give to whoever may be in need. From you I have learned to forgive quickly, because when I mess up you move on as quickly as it happened. From you I have learned to see the world in a whole new way, because you know and remember details far beyond my ability.
From you I have learned to live outside of my comfort zone, because for as many times this year as you've had to do something that would never be your choice, you choose to see the positive side of every situation. From you I have learned that doing things for people when nobody notices is far more rewarding than yelling my accomplishments from the rooftops. From you I have learned that my relationship with Jesus is the most precious thing in my life, because at the end of the day that is the best thing to have.
From you I have learned these things and so much more in our 6 years of marriage. Who would I be without you? I can never answer that question, and never would I want to. You have made me better, quietly and gently and without recognition or reward for all that you've done and all that you are. I love your strength and your smile and your laugh, but most of all I love the example of how to live a life that honors God above anyone else.
And I'm thankful for these last 6 years.
I love you,
Image by Chelsea Anderson Photography.