This year is a big one for Cowboy and me. We are celebrating 20 years of marriage. A big milestone for sure, but we also tip our hats to both sets of our parents who are celebrating 44 and 50 years. Marriage runs deep around these parts.
All those years ago, our wedding invitations were emblazoned with the phrase, “Today, I marry my best friend.”
We had dated for several years before tying the knot, but to be honest, I developed a bonafide, heart stopping crush on him the first time I saw his denim blue eyes and slightly crooked smile. Too shy to talk to him, I’d find reasons to pass him in the hall at school just so I could see him.
But even from the beginning when my breath would catch just trying to talk to him, friendship with a healthy dash of humor has always been our heartbeat. To this day, there is still no other human on this planet that I’d rather spend my time with than that car-loving, mr.-fix-it, critter-wrangling man.
Which brings me to what has often been one of our greatest differences. He could easily be a hermit. He’s a loner. He’s perfectly happy working away on a project, minding his business. While he can be sweeter than southern iced tea, the man simply doesn’t like to socialize much. Those who know him best, know that he has, what we all affectionately call, a people limit. In general, the fewer the better.
Me, on the other hand, well I love people, sharing stories, and connecting. I mean seriously, my first grade teacher didn’t call me the mouth-of-the-South for nothing. So I’m often itching to go galavanting somewhere, to see or do or taste something new, to meet up with friends, or to just take a break from the farm.
Not Cowboy. Nope. Not one little bit. What he does have is a deep down in his bones kind of contentment and satisfaction. He knows who he is and what he wants. And over time, I will be darned if that man is not rubbing off on me. I swear, at least once a week I break out in laughter as I look at him and say, “You are successfully turning me into you.”
And as you can probably guess, he just smiles.
This winter, I have found that I can go weeks and weeks, barely leaving our beloved farm. I am perfectly content to putter around, drink up the sunshine, and just be. Cowboy is so proud.
Cowboy and his contentment have taught me so much. The realization that you can define for yourself exactly who you want to be. That you can love so deeply and be so connected to a place, a person, a passion that the noise from the outside really doesn’t matter. It’s not about loading up your days with busy.
It’s been in this season of freezing temperatures and shorter days that I have truly settled in. Had a chance to reflect on this major milestone we are approaching, of who we were and who we are. And I am grateful.
Once a social butterfly, I now consider myself more like a faithful old hound dog. Learning that it is not about the quantity of activities but about the quality of them. Knowing that when it comes to the heart of the matter, it’s about friendship and kindness, and well, just simply being who you were always meant to be. May we all be so lucky to have someone rub off on us, someone who can show us the way.