Happy 5 Years, Chris


Happy 5 year anniversary, Chris! Every single year together has been wonderful, but, wow, this is one for the books….

We started the year on a northwestern road trip, our babymoon. I thought this was going to be the last of our fun trips because I was scared. I was only 18 or 19 weeks pregnant at the time, but completely terrified of what lied ahead. We tried to listen to a book on tape to prepare us for pregnancy and childbirth. You were comforted by the statistics that showed that issues were rare. I ended up with my head between my knees, convinced that “someone has to have the problem, it’ll probably be me.” Statistics never comfort me, but you did. You turned off the tape, let me freak out, and attempted to comfort me. You didn’t begrudge me, though you did (and still do) have a few laughs. After 5 years, you understood me and knew that we’d face whatever we needed to as it came.

As we got closer to my due date, nesting started to set in. All the sudden, there were projects that needed to be done. You rolled with it. We hired a few people for a major project, but you also got your hands dirty building cabinets for us “to hold all the baby things!” You committed almost every evening after work and weekend to build it, despite the fact that woodworking isn’t exactly your favorite hobby. But never once did you complain. You’re just like that – a go with the flow kind of guy. You may not love projects around the house, but you love me and making me happy, and in that 37-week pregnant moment, that’s what I needed.

Then the big moment came. After a few weeks of “I better not be pregnant this time next week” tears, Rosemary was finally born. You calmly listened to my complete meltdown when I learned that a c-section might be in my future. During surgery you helped me talk through my favorite vacation to keep me calm, holding my hand through the whole thing. And might I add, you took wonderful photos of the whole thing, even in the recovery room before I got back there, because you knew it would be important to me. I consider my need to take photos of everything one of my more annoying traits, but you are always willing to go along and help me document every moment.

Since Rosemary got here, we’ve had what I consider two stages of having a baby. The first is what I call the hormonal meltdown phase. Oh and what a meltdown it was. I was always scared of having a baby, worried that I wouldn’t love it or be annoyed by it stealing my precious time. But once Rosemary arrived, my world turned upside down (yes, Hamilton reference for the win). I didn’t want ANYONE to touch her but you and I. Seriously, I fell off the rails. At least once a day, I’d burst into tears exclaiming that I had squandered my time alone with her during my pregnancy. I was scared that people were going to make her sick or that she would love them and not me. Or something. I can’t even fully remember now, but I know I hurt people’s feelings during that phase by not wanting people to visit or not wanting them to hold Rosemary. To them, I say sorry. But to you, who supported this crazy train, I say thank you. I felt like you were my advocate. At this point, I’m realizing that all these stories sound like “I was crazy and you kept calm,” but I think most women who have had a baby before can relate. You’re not quite yourself anymore (because normal me is 100% rational, right cutes?). But you stood right there with me and rode out the storm.

Eventually the hormonal wave subsided and it was time to figure out life with a baby. There have been times when you’ve been busy at work, and there have been times where I’ve been angry at that, but there has never been a time when I felt like your expectation was that I was the mom, so I needed to do everything. It’s been a strange transition this year going from working a full time job, to pursuing a photography career, to wanting to be a stay at home mom. There have been moments where I’m overcome with guilt for not keeping the house clean or not contributing enough financially, but you remind me that we are partners and that I’m keeping our child alive and healthy. I often feel like a 20 year old who doesn’t know what they want to do in life, but you comfort me by reminding me to just enjoy my time home and that I have time to figure it out later. You never once pushed me to stay home, but you never once pushed me to go back to work. I feel like I’m starting to ramble here, but the point is that you let me be my own woman, as undecided as that is, and you support it. Isn’t that all any of us want in life?

And, finally, on that note, I want to note that I am so proud of the role model you are for Rosemary. You are a wonderful model for how she should live her life – reserved and never looking for the spotlight, but always wanting to reach your personal best. You’re also a great modelĀ for the type of partner she should look for in life – someone supportive and kind.

Thank you for being you, the best father and husband I could have dreamed of. You keep reminding me that you knew I’d love our little Rosemary the whole time. That I wouldn’t want to go on vacations without her, which is now true. You always see theĀ the soft side of me even when I can’t. Five years is just the beginning, and I can’t wait to explore the rest of our lives together. I love you!


(photos by Brita Photography)

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