Commentary by Heather Kestian
We recently cleaned the entire upstairs, moving around a great deal of stuff. When I say “we” I really mean my husband. He did the heavy lifting, while I was left with the daunting task of supervising said move. It was exhausting!
In moving things not moved for some time, I found a very treasured binder. It houses all of the hand-written letters between my husband and me from my husband’s days in Iraq. I was immediately moved to tears. We had been married and within a month, he left to go to war. It was heart-wrenching. What if he never came home? What if war changed him? Would we be the same when he came home? Would he still love me? The flood of emotions from our time apart hit me all over again.
Of all months to find this treasure, it was appropriate that I should find it in April. Some years ago, we shared our self-written vows, vows we continue to live by every single day.
Anyone who said being married is easy either has had too much to drink or is lying. I love my husband and I have no doubt he loves me, but marriage is work—hard work. It requires sacrifice, acceptance, and a willingness to change and adapt.
On our way back from our spring break trip, I looked at my husband and said, “Bad days are better with you than without you. I am glad we are together.” He looked at me, seemed a little puzzled, and then said “Thank you.” Yes, it is a compliment. It sounded better in my head and maybe it came out wrong, which is why I am writer.
At the end of our days on this planet, I hope we are able to say the ride was better because of the company we shared in each other along the way. We have both changed and even when he ticks me off (or on the rare occasion I upset him), at the end of each day, I appreciate his presence in our lives. He is a great dad to our children, enriches our lives, is awesome at trivia, and has a beautiful soul. We are lucky to have him. A very happy anniversary to my better half—I look forward to sharing some cake.