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I’ve changed my mind about almost everything but you.

When I was a little girl, I couldn’t pick my favorite Spice Girl. I loved Baby Spice, but was also a big fan of sports. So what about Sporty Spice? And all their outfits were so cool, I couldn’t make up my mind about which one I hoped to become one day.

When I was in middle school, I’d eagerly await my bi-weekly orthodontist appointments just so I could pick a new band color for my braces. And within a day or two, I’d have already decided I hated them, and would impatiently wait for the next time they could be changed.

In high school, my parents went from my best friends to my antagonists and back to baseline all within a 24-hour period. Repeat every day for four years. And in college, my major changed more often than my Jeep’s air freshener.

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Let’s just say it this way: nobody is nominating me for “Most Loyal” or “Miss Steadfast” anytime soon. I’ve just always been one to change my mind about things. Jobs, personal style, heck, even (maybe especially is more like it) dating was no exception. I’d fall in love, all googly-eyed and writing his name in cursive over and over again in my notebook.

Then like clockwork, the sun would stop shining out of his butt. There’d be minor annoyances that grew into big ones, or beige flags that started to look more red, or major deal breakers I was blind to in the beginning but unable to ignore any longer. There’d always be something that made me want to retreat. Often, I’d break up with a boyfriend only to get back together again a few weeks later. Then, you guessed it, we’d break up again. I’m not proud to admit this, but I kind of sucked at dating until I met you.

But you appeared before me at the bar with confidence that never broached toward arrogance. Right away, I knew you were in a different league from anyone else I’d ever even spoken with. Your green eyes shimmered as you thirsted for more details about me, and I reciprocated by drinking in all I could learn about you. The night we met, I went home and immediately forgot what your face looked like. It was more of a shift in my entire perspective that stuck with me. I was so scared I was going to screw it all up.

At our six-month dating milestone, I admitted I’d never consecutively dated anyone that long without at least one “break.” You asked me why that was, and I remember shrugging, “I just usually get sick of someone before then.” I applaud you for not running away right then and there. And I’m proud of myself for sticking around too.

Over the past 13 years, we’ve made the decision to choose each other. And even if all those seven million-ish minutes weren’t always magical, they’ve been so worth sticking around for. You have been worth sticking around for.

RELATED: Dear Husband, Your Strong Hands Hold My Heart

It’s not like our time together hasn’t included my mind changing about other things goodness, no. In that time, I’ve been blonde, brunette, redheaded, and some unfortunate resemblances of all those combined. I’ve changed jobs and career goals. I went from being unsure about having children to adding our boys to the top of every prayer of gratitude I’ve ever whispered. I’ll continue to change my mind about many things, love, but never about you.

You’re not a popstar poster scotch-taped to my bedroom wall or a small rubber band going over my teeth. You’re not a teen’s relationship with her parents, and you’re nothing like any job I’ve quit or boy I lost interest in. You’re my life partner, and I will continue to choose you every day.

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Brianna Baranowski

Brianna Baranowski is a California girl loving the Iowa way of life! She is a boy mom who thrives on authentic and honest connection. Brianna is a writer, naturalist, and former teacher.

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