Monday, September 9, 2013

Happy Cotton Anniversary, Chelsea

Chelsea and I got married two years ago on 9/10/11. Happy 2 years of marriage, and 12 years of being a unit. I love you, Bug.

Apparently, the traditional second year wedding anniversary gift is cotton. Meaning, for your second anniversary, you are supposed to present your significant other with a gift made out of cotton.

Chelsea and I chose to broaden "cotton" to "textiles" and "textiles" to "sneakers".

I got her a pair of Reebok Crossfit Nanos. She got me a pair of Reebok Crossfit Lifters.

I think that getting each other workout shoes as a gift is fairly emblematic of our relationship. Chelsea and I are workers. Our...family mission statement...if we have one...is "Stronger than Yesterday". Everyday, we get up, and we grind out a day. We each work 9+ hours at our jobs, go to the gym, engage in an (often grueling) Crossfit workout, and go home- make dinner- and I mean "make dinner"- like, from scratch. At the end of the day, we usually have exactly one hour of "casual time" which we generally use to eat dinner and watch an episode of some TV show (Breaking Bad right now). Then we go to sleep and do it all over again. On Sunday, our "day of rest", we clean the house top to bottom, go grocery shopping, and prepare a week's worth of lunches and breakfasts.

So our anniversary gifts to each other are basically....things to facilitate the process by which we are helping each other get stronger on every level. We are a team with common goals, and a focus on making those goals happen.

Plus they kind of fit the theme.

Cotton.

That's us now. Here are some fun little stories about the early days of our relationship.


-The first time I can remember thinking that I was in love with Chelsea: There was a bomb scare in the Fine Arts Center at UMass Amherst where, as theater majors, we basically lived. Because of this, all of our classes for the day were cancelled. Chelsea, Mike Carr, and a few other people went to the Hampshire Mall to go to the movies. We saw "Hannibal". Chelsea and some other people went to Orange Julius to get some...Orange Julius. I remember watching her order and thinking "Holy shit, I think I'm in love with this girl." I kept it to myself. We had been dating for one month.

-The first time we said we loved each other: It was November- about a month after I had first had the thought that I was probably in love. We were in my dorm room on the fifth floor of Van Meter- I had the best view of any dorm on campus. Van Meter was at the top of "the hill" and you could see the Pioneer Valley stretch on forever from my window. We were watching the Appendices on "the Fellowship of the Rings" Extended Edition DVD set. The moon was full. I'm not sure how we got on the topic, but we both said we loved one another. It was at this time we decided that if (when) we got married we would honeymoon in New Zealand. 9 years later, we did. We even visited the Shire.

-The first time I told other people that I thought this was it for me- Mike Carr, Beth Cartier, Ryan Murphy and I were driving from Amherst, MA to Manchester, NH to pick Andy Hobgood up from the airport. Andy had moved to Chicago a few months before and was flying home for Christmas. None of us had seen him for a few months, so we had arranged to be the ones to pick him up at the airport. On the way there, I mentioned that I thought Chelsea was the one. Like, "the" one, and that I was positive that I would marry her. Ryan, Mike, and Beth all told me I was crazy. It turned out that I was not.

-When Chelsea told me she would follow me halfway across the country- I had decided to move to Chicago in 2003. I figured this would be the end of my relationship with Chelsea, even after all of that other stuff. What I mean by that is I figured she would break up with me because 1000 miles (the distance from Massachusetts to Chicago, roughly) is a long way to go. Instead of breaking up with me, Chelsea told me that she would spend the next year in Amherst finishing out her degrees (she got two of them) and then would move to Chicago to be with me. Despite a very tough year apart, this is exactly what happened.

-Last story- the first iPhone came out in 2007 and Chelsea really wanted one. She knew that we didn't really have enough money to afford one- they were going for about $500 at the time, and we were young and fairly broke (or younger and broker than we are now. But I scrimped and saved and bought nothing for myself for a few months, and when Christmas rolled around, Chelsea had an iPhone under the Christmas tree. She was shocked and delighted. It's still probably my favorite gifting experience of all time.



And that's that. A few little stories. Chelsea, we've come so far, and I can't wait to see where we go next.

I love you.

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