Coastal Collective Co.

An Open Letter To My Husband......

Marriage, Relationships, Valentine's DayAnneke McConnell

*This letter was originally published by myself on my previous blog.  With Valentine's Day just around the corner, I thought it would be good to revisit and share our experience (now married 13 years!) and hopefully encourage you in your marriage whatever season you are in right now.

xo, Anneke

 


 

It’s been 12 years, 7 months, 14 days and 22 hours since we stood before family and friends and said “I do”.

I was 19.  You were 23.

Both young, but ready to commit to forever…..together.

 

 

We didn’t even know what that meant.  Honestly…..

 

I’ve been writing this letter in my head for weeks….every since that stupid fight we had.  Those arguments that have miraculously over the years become a calm dispute, but still leave you looking each other in the eye and wondering, “Is this how we’re going to live the rest of our lives?”  You know it, and I know it.

 

Those kind of fights suck.  I hate the feeling it leaves in us.  It’s toxic to our marriage and permeates into every area of our life.  I’m not as good at anything when things aren’t right with you.  But if I’m being honest, this isn’t about you and this isn’t about me.  It’s about something much greater than that.

 

Isn’t it ironic that they say love is worth fighting for?  Seems more like it’s worth praying for to me.

 

You and I are like nothing else.  We’ve never been the oogly-eyed passionate lovers that selflessly serve each other at any given opportunity.  At times we butt heads and it seems easier to love others than it does to love each other.  We are both in our own unique ways equally stubborn, driven, passionate, and all consuming in our endeavors.

 

We’ve seen others give up on each other along the way.  And not because of awful circumstances, but because “life happens” and “people change”.  It makes me want to scream because we get it.  We’ve felt that way.  But we’re still here….together….and it’s worth it!  Marriage isn’t a bouquet of roses every waking moment.

 

 

I knew it would be tough, because that is, after all, part of life. The ups and downs are inevitable.  We promised before God to love, honor and cherish in sickness and in health, and in the highs and the lows.

But looking back all those years ago at the good and bad and sad and adventurous moments, I never understood what it meant to say what I said to you a few weeks ago at the end of that stupid fight.  A saying that could only be understood after 12 years, 7 months, 14 days and 22 hours of marriage.

 

I love you in the in between.

 

 

At those greatest highs and lows in life, we have made it through with our faith and family and friends.  But I’ve found........

 

................it’s the every day moments of life that have the capability of diluting love over time if you aren’t careful.

 

Until now, I never quite knew how to say that to you.

 

 

I love you in the every day.

The mundane. The simple.

When we’re stuck on the side of the road.

When the bacon gets burnt.

When the schedules collide.

 

 

I love you in the in between.

 

When there is no sickness, but we feel anything but healthy.

When things seem so routine….so monotonous and boring.

When we’re sleep-deprived parents of 3 kids under 4 and things are far from “sexy”.

 

 

I love you in the in between.

 

I love you because you are an amazing, and I mean, AMAZING dad.

 

You dance with our daughters and take them to the ballet.  You tell them that they are beautiful. That they are special. That they are tough, talented, and capable of anything they put they hearts and minds to.  You listen to them, hear their hearts and dreams, and encourage their personalities to shine.

 

You wrestle with our son, but teach him what a true gentleman is.  You teach him things I never could as his mom….from all those life skills about fishing and hunting to gross boy things like making fart noises in your elbow.  Which ironically makes me cringe and laugh simultaneously.

 

Remember that time when we had an ice cream fight in your old beat up truck so long ago.  It’s such a small thing, but I love telling our kids stories of silly little moments like that…..moments of life lived in all encompassing joy because we were simply living it together.

 

It didn’t matter if we were in our little starter home rambler, custom built craftsman or quirky beach house.

 

It’s just been one day, one step at a time, together.

 

Because of you, our kids have a father that is an amazing example of love, hard work, kindness, intelligence, compassion, fearlessness, boundaries, faith, joy, and persistence.

 

I love you in the in between.

 

The in between is the day to day of life.  The moments that make up the years.

 

Changing hairstyles.

Changing interests.

Changing homes, jobs, and incomes.

Changing food habits.  

Changing expectations.  

Changing dreams……

 

So. Much. Change.

 

But I love you in the in between.

 

All these years later and we know we’re so stubborn we would have given up on this thing called marriage a long time ago if it weren’t for our faith in Jesus.  The in between is not always easy, exciting, or even fulfilling.  And those not so hot “in between” moments can stretch for days, months, and for some…..years.

 

But I didn’t marry you so you could be the ultimate fulfillment and excitement for my life.

I didn’t marry you so you would be my end all and thrill.

I didn’t marry you because you were perfect…sorry to break it to ya. 

 

Even in spite of all those crappy moments, I LOVE doing this thing called life with you!

I LOVE being one with you in a world that says “It’s all about me”.

 

Every year, even through those disagreements, changes, decisions, and more……we fall more in love in a way we never knew was possible.

 

It’s a love that goes beyond butterflies in your stomach, flirtatious grins, and date nights in 120mm louboutins.

It’s a love that hopes and dreams, yet faces dismal challenges together.

It’s a love that forgives….even if it takes longer than we’d like to admit.

It’s a love that can be shouted from the rooftops or still and silent.

It’s a love that stands up for what is good and right and holy.

It’s a love centered on Jesus.

 

 

Thank you for loving me and all my flaws. For pushing me out of my comfort zone. For supporting my dreams.

Thank you for loving me in my incredibly weak moments and failures.

Thank you for loving our kids in a way I never even knew would make my heart melt.

Thank you for loving others and doing your best to serve them, truly wanting the best for them.

Thank you for loving life.  And for loving me amidst the in between moments that make up life.

 

I love you in the in between.

 

I am honored to be your wife….

 

xo, Anneke

 

 

****For a short time, I am making "The In Between Love Print" with gold infinity symbol available.

Click HERE for print details.

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