Letters are my favorite way to express words of love to the people I care about. I’ve never been great with spoken words; I often fumble my way through important conversations, and I sometimes miss moments to speak words of life, because I just don’t know what to say. Usually the words come to me after that fact, and I write them in a letter or a text or an e-mail. I’m much better at sharing how I feel when I can give my feelings the weight they need, when I can consider and choose each word carefully.
Two of my consistently most popular posts over the past several months have been the letters I wrote to my husband for our anniversary and to my mom for her birthday. Honestly, I almost didn’t post these, because I was afraid they were too personal to do well on a blog. I knew my friends and family would enjoy reading them, but I wondered if other readers who don’t know my husband or my mom personally would be able to relate. I shared these posts anyway because I wanted to publicly honor these special people, and I was pleasantly surprised when they took off.
It got me thinking that this idea could make a great series, so I’m getting started today. This new series is called Love Letters, and they’ll be to all kinds of people — some specific and some not. You can bet there will be more than a few to Selah, perhaps a letter to tired moms everywhere, one to my baby sister, and maybe even one to faithful dogs.
Here’s the first official installment of Love Letters, this one to my husband during this ordinary season of marriage.
My dear husband,
We welcomed our baby girl into our lives, our family, our home just over 11 weeks ago. Since then, our lives have been far from ordinary, but I’ll admit that our marriage has felt quite ordinary. Disconnected, even.
Some days it feels like we’re on two totally different frequencies, as you leave the house in your crisp pants and clean sweater to go to work, and I’m wearing the same yoga pants as yesterday, which are still stained with spit up and covered in dog hair. When you get home, we eat a hurried dinner while we bounce a crying baby, then we put her to bed and watch about 30 minutes of TV before I fall asleep and you give up to play video games. We go upstairs and fall into bed, then repeat the whole thing again the next day.
We’ve always been a pretty low-key couple, choosing a game night or TV marathon over fancy dinners out. We prioritize adventure, sure — we spend a lot of time outdoors and travel as much as we can. But most days, our life together isn’t grand or fanciful.
Even so, you show me love in the most ordinary, everyday ways, and that means more to me than any grand gesture.
I love the way you choose me every day, even when I’m donning the same nursing-momma uniform I’ve been wearing all week.
I love the way you always clear my plate and do the dinner dishes without even thinking twice about it.
I love the way you’re never too tired to rub my aching back and legs.
I love the way you bring me flowers and wrap me in a bear hug when you know I’ve had a hard day.
I love the way you listen patiently and respond with empathy when my heart is breaking and pouring forth in the form of sky-high emotions and worst-case scenarios.
Our love is ordinary but not dull, comfortable but not complacent, well-worn but not worn-out. Our love has carved deep grooves into my heart, the best kind of ruts to be stuck in. We are perfectly predictable, and every time I call out exactly what you’ll say next, we laugh like it’s the first time that’s ever happened.
When we said I do and danced to the words “there will be days and days and days that feel the same,” we knew what we were signing up for. We said I do to sweatpants, changing bodies (we aren’t exactly in our prime these days), and a pace of life that’s often a gentle sway. We said I do to serving each other in the trying times, loving each other in the painful times, and keeping our spark alive in the same-old times.
Someday our life will be exciting again. Someday it won’t be all about tracking nap schedules, washing bottles, and clawing at every extra minute of sleep. We’ll see the world and chase those scary dreams. We’ll liven up and go on dates and be able to see beyond the fog of tomorrow. I’m grateful that I can rely on your steadfastness, that when the fog of being new parents fades, you’ll still be standing beside me, holding my hand and ready to move forward into a season of our marriage that’s a little more technicolor and little less gray.
Our ordinary love may not be the stuff of romance novels or fairy tales, but every day that ends with me exhausted but curled up next to you, my cold feet pressed against yours, my head on your chest and your arm draped over my side, is a happy ending in my book.
I love you today and every day,
Your devoted wifeA love letter to my husband on an ordinary day of #marriage. Click To Tweet