Dan and I celebrated our 5th anniversary last month. It's crazy to think that only 5 years ago we took each other's hands, I took his name, and we got ourselves hitched. Since that gloriously freezing day we've had quite the ride. 2 babies, loads of trips, a few heartaches and a lot of fun. So for this Valentines Day I'd like to commemorate my valentine. He is my one and only and the most amazing husband a girl could ever want.
Dan and I met at a party in April of 2007. I went on a whim with a guy I really didn't want to go out with. I decided to make the most of it and struck up conversation with a cute skater-looking boy. He was funny, and we ended up swapping YouTube videos on his laptop for an hour or so. He got my number from the guy I was with (what a stud) and called me up a few days later. We got together for Mexican food and talked for 5 hours that first outing. I knew something good was going to come of it.
A week after we met we both headed off to Europe. I was going to live in Spain for 2 months on a BYU study abroad. Dan was going to tour around with a friend. We emailed back and forth while we were both having our European experience. I printed off all those emails after we'd been married and still have them.
When I got home in July of 2007 we met up right away. Our first kiss happend 3 days after I'd been back in town and after that we were together 24/7. I always think back on that summer with such fond memories. It was a good one. We went on so many adventures together; camping, hiking, Sliders marathons, late-night 7/11 runs. It was wonderful.
Once Fall hit we both started feeling a little more serious about things. We didn't really know what to think other than we loved each other and wanted to be together all the time. In October of 2007 I was at a sort of crossroads; I was either going to move to Colorado to live with my brother's family while he was in Iraq or Dan and I were going to get married. When I put it to Dan in those terms he suggested I should move to Colorado and we could see how things went while I was gone. Having tried a few long-distance relationships before I told him if I left we were most likely not going to stay together. A few days later, after a long discussion, we both felt like marriage was what we wanted.
It was an amazing and stressful time. I wanted to get hitched before my brother left for the Middle East at the beginning of January. We both felt like we didn't want to wait until the next summer so we set a date that was less than 2 months away. Our families were thrilled...if not a little stunned. A few days after we had set a date Dan and I were walking to his car to go out to lunch. He stopped me, pulled a box out of his pocket, and officially proposed. I let him pick out the ring and I was so happy when he put it on my finger. Things were official!
We were married for time and all eternity on December 20th, 2007. It was one of the happiest days of my life. Dan looked so handsome; he shaved for the wedding and it was the first time I'd seen him all smooth! The day we got married it snowed and snowed and snowed. It was epic. Our reception was still a blast and we saw so many friends.
I've always been amazed that we knew each other for such a relatively short time before we tied the knot. I can honestly say I've never in my life met another person with whom I am so compatible. I remember telling someone after we got married that I knew Dan was The One because I always felt so comfortable around him. Our personalities have always just clicked.
It's been 5 years now since that cold December day. Each day I learn new things about my husband that impress me. He is, without a doubt, the best father I have ever met. He is patient, kind, understanding, and above all else, loving and tender.
Dan has been present and very involved in both the births of our sons. With Eli he was able to see him come into the world and saw him take his first little breath. When we went through all the drama with Sammy and had to have a c-section Dan was there with the doctors checking him out and making sure he was ok. He gets up in the night when someone is crying. He plays on the floor with the boys for hours. He loves them and they worship him
I can't imagine what my life would be like without Dan. A few months ago we took a long road trip to see his family. On the way home we had a few hours where Sammy was sleeping and Eli was watching a movie and there was peace in the car. I was amazed that even after 5 years Dan and I spent that time making each other laugh so hard we were crying.
To end my long, sappy ramblings I'd just like to say this; marriage is hard, and can be a struggle sometimes. Trying to mesh 2 people's personalities, interests, goals, and priorities takes time and patience. I am so eternally grateful that I hitched my wagon to a man who is willing to work on things together. There are hardly any problems we've encountered that we haven't been able to overcome with discussion, laughter, and love.
I love you my valentine! Here's to many many more.