Sorry I've been MIA for a while - Ceej's sleeping schedule has been a little erratic and with me working a few hours a day from home I feel like I can't keep up with everything! Thank goodness less than a month to work and then I'm officially a free woman :)
Anyhoo…this post is very special for a different reason. Yesterday Chris and I celebrated our 10 year wedding anniversary. 10 years…excuse my language but holy shit! Where did the past 10 years go?
In case some of you don't know - we met in college - at Purdue in West Lafayette. I was a little sister and he was a pledge at his fraternity - Theta Tau. It was the house's halloween party and we may or may not have had a few too many drinks. It was the end of the night, lights on and a few os us were hanging out on the stairs. Chris had dressed up as a girl along with his pledge brothers and let me tell you they looked hilarious! Mini skirts, shirts that said FLIRT, fake boobs - the whole package (I must find that pic somewhere). I was, at the time, a micro-biology major so I had some pretty advanced calculus classes that I wasn't doing all that well in. Chris swore in his drunken stupor that he could tutor me and I would get an A. So I said sure. Never thinking I would hear from him. The next night I was at the house during study hours, so was he, and we set a date for him to come over and the rest was history!!
Our first official date is still one of our favorite memories. We went to the Olive Garden and we literally spent about 4 hours there. We ended up closing the place down (crazy I know) because we were just hanging out talking. I remember our waiter finally saying "I'll leave you alone, just let me know when you guys need something" because he felt bad bugging us.
Chris and I were inseparable from day one - from the early days of our dating - as bad as it may be - we never spent a night apart if we were in the same city. Even if he had things with his pledge brothers till the wee hours of the morning - we would eventually end up together. We just genuinely wanted to be with one another. We dated all through college and were so in love. The summer we were engaged - the summer before we graduated - Chris lived at home and I lived in South Bend for an internship with Honeywell and we would spend every weekend together and also meet halfway - in Merrillville - and stay the night together at La Quinta Inn and have dinner at Bakers Square. No joke. :)
Chris proposed to me on July 25th, 2003 in my apartment that Honeywell had put me up in. I came home from work expecting Chris to be there sometime that night and as I walked up the stairs to my apartment my roommate was rushing down them with her boyfriends dog who we were watching at the time and was acting super strange. I thought nothing of it until I opened the door to our apartment and it was filled with rose petals and hundreds of candles. There Chris was in a suit and he got down on one knee and asked me to marry him.
We were married on campus as St. Thomas Aquinas Catholic Church 51 weeks later and had our reception at the Elks. It was amazing - I know I'm partial but seriously one of the most fun weddings I've ever been too - it was a crazy dance party all night long. We went to Grand Cayman for our honeymoon and a few short weeks later moved halfway across country to New Jersey to start our lives together. We were there 365 days until moving back to Illinois. I'm a midwestern girl at heart and Jersey was just too far from our families.
Over the next 9 years we would travel the world, we'd move from the suburbs to the city, we would celebrate professional accomplishments, cry over lossed love ones, reminisce about the good ole days, we would go to Cubs games and concert, festivals and fairs, we would do big things like ride elephants and get in cages with Tigers in Thailand and watch lions eat their latest kill in South Africa, we would do small things like Friday night Mexican, sunset bike rides, drinks on our patio, and Sunday afternoon yard work. We would learn we weren't capable of having kids on our own and would walk the infertility journey together. We would realize that no matter how good things seem - it can all change in an instant and you are so much stronger than you could ever imagine. I would conquer my fears of needles and anything medical with Chris by my side when I gave myself injection after injection as we worked towards our dream of becoming parents.
Big or small - makes no difference - we did these things together and that is the key. Everyone has asked what is your secret to making it 10 years. And we just talked about this last night - and we both agree - it's never stop fighting for it. We aren't a fairy tale, Bachelorette type couple. We fight and bicker, we have big disagreements and small ones, we've been through a lot of shit - that may have torn other couples apart - but we have fought like hell because we believe in us. We promised to love one another forever and that's what keeps us going and fighting. Communication is key for us and even though I'm not the best at it sometimes - Chris always manages to get it out of me.
We are exact opposites of one another - I'm an outgoing, outspoken extrovert and Chris is a quiet, introvert so we balance one another out very well. He brings me back to earth and I bring him out of his shell. He challenges me - everyday - to be a better person. He has such a kind heart and is so sweet and honestly puts others before himself always. I cannot imagine my life without him in it.
This past year was our best yet when he made all my dreams come true and made me a mom. Every single day when I look into Ceej's eyes I see Chris and it makes me fall in love with him over and over again. Seeing him with CJ is probably the sweetest thing in the world - he's head over heels for that little boy and it melts my heart.
Anyways I'm totally rambling so time to wrap it up. Chris - you are my soulmate. I truly believe we were put on this earth to be together - through thick and thin. You make me a better person every single day. This year has been simply amazing - every up, every down, every shot, every tear - all of it - brought us our sweet baby and I wouldn't change a thing. Thank you for standing beside me through it all - through hormonal cries, crazy rants - all of it. You are my rock. You are an amazing husband and an even more amazing Dad. The love that I see in your eyes for CJ gives me chills sometimes - I can't wait to watch you guys grow together. I can't wait to see what the next year brings for our little family of 3 - Happy 10 years QT - here's to many many more. And always remember - I will love you forever.