We'll start with the most recent, last year on May 22, 2011:
Not to be outdone by the year before that: May 22, 2010
The biggest day of my life. 2:00 pm. I walked into a sealing room as Chelsey Savio, holding hands with my math tutor I met 9 years prior and walked out of those doors as Chelsey Seibold and it is the best decision I have ever made or will ever make. That doesn't mean that every second of the last two years has been us looking like this:
with photo shopped billowing white clouds and my hair curled with G staring longingly. I find it physiologically fascinating that men and women have the same shaped heads because their brains are so different. 2 years is the length of a mission. 2 years is the length of an elephant gestation/pregnancy, It feels so short and yet at the same time, it feels like I have always been married to G.
I have learned so much in these 2 years. I have learned how G likes his scrambled eggs, to save receipts, that the little lid on the top of the dryer is for collecting lint and needs to be changed (a story for another day), that it turns out exercise really is important, that scripture study and checking ESPN are essential and must be done daily, that Garretts prayers don't hit the ceiling and that he really speaks with the Lord, that men have way more gas than I ever imagined, that loft refers to a golf club not a room, that G prefers fruit gum to mint, that a king sized bed is a necessity.
I have learned that trust is everything in a relationship and that there is not substitution for integrity, that nuva rings don't work and that G still loves me even when I am a puking whale, that hitting a golf ball is secretly ridiculously boring but that G loves it so I tolerate it because I love to be with him, that G did not want to leave me when I lit the cookbook on fire or couldn't cook anything but french toast and that true love is so patient. I have learned when we got married that:
is a true statement. I have learned that the definition of responsible is Garrett Seibold, that making out is always fun, that Gar can kick my trash at bowling any day of the week, that you can still have a healthy marriage and be deeply in love and still have moments where you want to give your spouse a wedgie, that I love not scraping my windshield in the winter, that I could never be a parent without him, that men still laugh at the same things that are funny to pre puberty boys at scout camp, that G was so handsome when he would wear my favorite polo and cologne and play with my hair; but he is even more handsome when he is wearing his sweatpants and glasses and is pulling wads of my nasty hair that has clogged the sink out of the drain, smelling like drain-o and not complaining.
I have learned that that bowls are to be loaded from back to front, not front to back in the dishwasher, that LeBron James exists, that G can hold his own when we play words with friends, that Axe is better than Old Spice deodorant, that being held when you are crying for no reason is always the answer, that you can still be attracted even when you both get love handles, that men don't have any need to chit chat about nothing, that you never regret being thoughtful even if it's extra work, that going to JCPenny during the tie and shirt sale is helpful and 16 1/2 is the right neck size, that a happy marriage requires effort from your heart every single dang day, that laughing hard together is critical, that G has a far better sacrament meeting reverence stamina than I will ever hope to achieve in this mortal probation, that just doing nothing is still something when we are together and some of my favorite moments.
I have learned what is right is far more important than who is right, that G calls the hair on his chest his bear rug and it makes me laugh, that you really should get your oil changed, that we never naturally pick the same movie at Redbox, that betting for back rubs is great unless you lose too many game in a row and then your fingers cramp, that a large tater tots with fry sauce and cream slush are a must every time you pass a Sonic, that I inherited my own private Drivers Ed teacher on road trips. I have learned that true love is not romantic notes and tachycardic texts, but when G gets up with Liv at 3 am because she soaked through her generic brand Huggies impersonation diaper and when he comes back to bed, spoons me and kisses me for a minute even though he thinks I'm asleep. I always love that and it makes me smile in the dark.
I have learned that Garrett Seibold is so right for me, the biggest miracle blessing to ever hit my world, that I had no idea I could love someone so deeply and completely, with every cell in my soul. I have learned that there is nothing better than being married to the right person who you want to "do life" with day in and day out, the exciting thrilling days, the soul stretching trials, the boring blah mundane and everything in between, photo shopped billowing clouds or not.
I will never understand why I got to marry who I did. I think I am going to have to live the rest of my life worthy of the scam that I pulled because I know without a doubt that I didn't get to be Chelsey Seibold because of my own makeup merit and flirting skills. He really is a gift to me because Heavenly Father knew exactly what I needed and someday maybe could deserve. There is no relationship on Earth like marriage. None. It's a vulnerable thing to seal yourself to someone and realize that they will know every weakness, every insecurity, every dragon breath non mascara wearing morning you will ever have and still trust that they will want to be yours, and hold nothing back for the rest of forever. CS Lewis said:
"To love at all is to be vulnerable. Love anything and your heart will certainly be wrung and possibly broken. If you want to make sure of keeping it intact, you must give your heart to no one, not even to an animal. Wrap it carefully round with hobbies and little luxuries, avoid all entanglements; lock it up safe in the casket or coffin of your selfishness. But in that casket, safe dark, motionless airlesss, it will change. It will not be broken; it will become unbreakable, impenetrable, irredeemable."
Nothing changes you more than giving yourself fully to someone else and knowing that they are doing the same. That you literally offered over an altar, all that you are and all that you want to be, love handles, weaknesses, and all to another imperfect person that is going to spend his life trying to love you perfectly.
I love this quote by Erica Jong. I have no idea who she is but she said something cool, so here it is:
"Do you want me to tell you something really subversive? Love is everything it's cracked up to be. That's why people are so cynical about it. It really is worth fighting for, worth being brave for, risking everything for. And the trouble is, if you don't risk anything, you risk even more."
There is nothing deeper, more meaningful, more important, more joy bringing or effort requiring than marriage. Garrett Seibold isn't just something I added to my life, he is my life. If you think about it, who you marry is what your life is. Eventually Liv will learn to walk (hopefully) and fly away from the nest, go to college and seal herself to a suitor of our choosing; extended family is forever but it's not like we have Christmas or family vacation every day; living a good life and not killing people is important so we can see Heavenly Father but after we hop on some clouds and meet Him that will only take a few minutes because He has a lot of children and then He is going to say nice to meet you send G and I to be with...G and I. Garrett Seibold IS my forever and I am so thankful.