A few times a year my husband hijack’s my blog. He’s been doing it for years on certain days of the year–our Anniversary, my birthday, etc.) Every now and then, I do a little hijacking of the hijacked blog. In the darkness of the night, I steal away with the computer and hijack that which has already been hijacked. Or, I wait until he goes to work and take the blog back. So today’s blog is written by both of us. (My (Summer) words in red.
(That’s me. With no makeup. At 6 a.m. Following a run. In freezing cold temperatures. In snow. In NYC. Thank you, Chad, for putting that picture here. And your welcome, dear readers, for the unsightly visual.)
It all began rather innocently, that’s what I tell myself anyway. And I think it went something like this:
Summer: “Hey, do you want to go for a run?”
Me (rather eloquently): “Huh?” (He’s always had a way with words.)
S: “Do you want to go for a run?”
Me: “HUH?!? (There’s that eloquence again.) Am I chasing a frisbee or ball?” (Because, in college, I evidently only ran when my canine blood kicked in and I chased a frisbee or ball.)
S: “No, we will just run. It can be short. I think it will be fun.”
Me: “Okay?” (I was unsure what she was trying to say. I had chalked up running without chasing something as a form of corporal punishment because it helped me “get in shape”. Let me chase the ball around, and I’ll get in shape! Running halls, lines on a court, circles around a track or around the bases seemed like punishment rather than a benefit to the sport I was playing. But ultimately this running task was only done because I wanted to impress her, make her like me a little bit more, and to spend more time with her.) (Don’t tell Chad, but if he never would have run with me, it wouldn’t have changed a thing. He had me at ‘Hello’.)
So that’s where it began, the me “running”.
Over the years since that initial movement, I have run, and I have not. I have run long distances, and I have sat on the couch. I have consistently run, and I have taken months (okay, maybe years, off). So, while Summer has been consistently running for most of her life, and all of “our” life, I, well I, have not over these last 18 years. But there is something that keeps taking me back out to the road.
Back in the beginning of our relationship, when we had all the strains, troubles and tribulations that college life brought us, we would take time away from the rigors of a 3-4 hour day of classes and go on a run. I’m sure Summer was doing it to exercise, while my intentions were much more pure, I wanted to impress her. I’m not sure how many times we ran together, or how far we would run when we did run, but looking back on it now, I sure do miss those days of flatland running! (This is why I miss the flatlands.) I don’t miss that life though. While the courting/running were fun, I wouldn’t trade what we have now for what we had then. (I wouldn’t either.)
We have enjoyed spending thousands of miles while running together. Summer probably more so than I because, out on the open road, she has my undivided attention to talk about things. She can talk about things. (Let’s face it, I can always talk about things.) Not me, I am more than willing to listen, but talking…talking while running wastes the little oxygen that I have to spare. But we enjoy the time together. So much so, that lately we have been talking about our individual philosophies on running, while we are on the open roads (generally on flat stretches or downhills). She has a certain philosophy about running and health, she eats so she can run. And I have a different one, I run because I like to eat, like, I really like to eat. And because I like to eat (and the fact I’m getting old), I need to run. My enjoyment of food keeps drawing me back to the road. (I will only admit this on our anniversary–I find his humor charming.)
So while we both run for different reasons, we both run, and we both enjoy it. I may never qualify for the Boston Marathon (every time Summer runs a marathon she qualifies), but every mile I’m on the road, I know I’m getting stronger. Every mile that we spend together running is just another mile to process life together, grow together, laugh together and encourage each other. So, no matter the reason for being on the road, the trail, or the treadmill, we are out there getting it in. Everyone runs for different reasons, but as long the feet are moving forward, it all counts the same. (YES, YES, YES.)
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Today marks 16 years that Summer and I have been married. I couldn’t ask for a better partner in marriage, parenting and life. Thank you for always pushing yourself and your family to be bigger and better than the limitations we place on ourselves.
So if you are looking for us tonight, we have an amazingly romantic night planned. We are taking 3 kids to a trail where they can ride their bikes and we can do our annual anniversary run. Then we will take a nice trip to Subway for supper and more romance! We wouldn’t have it any other way. (No other way, indeed.)
Here’s to thousands more miles together, more stories, struggles, smiles, tears and laughs shared! Happy Anniversary, Summer!
I married a good one, didn’t I? You see, I love being married. More specifically, I love being married to this guy. And with each passing year, I am more and more convinced that this marriage and family thing is the most important thing I will ever do. Chad and I know that we are blessed to have each other, to do life together, to partner together is so many areas of life. I believe that we are far better together than we would ever be apart and I think that’s exactly how marriage is supposed to be. I hope we are showing our kids that life should be fun and that laughter is what keeps us going. I hope that they see that the mundane is just as important as the adventure. And I hope that they see that the choice Chad and I made 16 years ago to be with one another, is a choice we’ve made every day since.
Chad, thank you for 16 years of partnership. Thank you for choosing me. Thank you for breathing life into my dreams. Thank you for standing with and for our family every single day. It’s no secret–I married up.