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This is eight years.

A picture taken in the few minutes of pre-dawn quiet before toddler chaos ensues. A few moments of reflection that eight years ago, we chose each other to do this life with. 

This day will not be like past anniversaries, or future anniversaries when we’re able to get away from it all and focus on just us. But it’s still our day to celebrate this life we have created together.

This messy, crazy, busy, and wonderful life.

When we sat in our Pre-Cana class all those years ago, we were asked to share what we believed were the three most important aspects of a fulfilling marriage. Communication, trust, and love topped most of the lists. 

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We were the only couple that said fun. I couldn’t, and still can’t, imagine spending a lifetime with someone without fun being a cornerstone of the relationship. 

Life hasn’t always made it easy. We’ve been thrown some curveballs, but throughout everything, you are the one person who can still elicit a smile from me during the rough times and bring out my snort-filled laughs when times are good.

What I am most proud of though is the example we are setting for our son. 

From the big to the small, he is witness to what a marriage based on mutual respect, love, fun, sacrifice, and God looks like. 

He sees the small things like the homemade post-workout smoothies you make for me every morning. 

He sees the big things like the week you were quarantined in the spare bedroom, and I took care of everything and everyone.

He sees the hard things like the times we’ve comforted each other in moments of pain and loss.

He sees the fun things like when we have our impromptu dance parties and tickle attacks.

He sees us and the authentic, love-filled life we have created. 

When we took our vows nearly a decade ago, we had no idea what was in store for us. From the exhilarating highs of achieving lifelong dreams to the shattering loss of a life we createdour path has been far from mundane. 

RELATED: Dear Husband, I Am With You Even When It’s Hard

As cliche as it may sound, I cannot fathom being on this journey with anyone else by my side. 

So while our time together now consists of carving out 30 minutes to watch an uninterrupted episode of Ted Lasso rather than sipping on champagne at a fancy restaurant, I wouldn’t trade it for the world.

Cheers to many more adventure-filled years!

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Laura Niebauer Palmer

Laura lives in Austin with her husband and son where she enjoys writing, being involved in her local church and attempting to find the perfect chocolate chip cookie recipe! She has written for Chicken Soup For The Soul, Scary Mommy and The Penny Hoarder along with sharing her adoption story on her blog.

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