“I love you just as you are. I accept you as a blessing from God. I join with you today to be the partner of all my days, to be the mother of our children, to be the companion of my house; we shall keep together what share of trouble and sorrow our lives may lay upon us, and we shall hold together our store of goodness and plenty and love.
When our way becomes difficult, I promise to stand by you and uplift you, so that through our union we can accomplish more than we could alone. I promise to honor and care for you, to speak the truth to you in love, and to cherish and encourage your own fulfillment through all the changes of our lives. I will stand beside you in joy or in sorrow, in ease and in conflict, putting the commitment we make today above any obstacle that we may face.
This is my solemn vow.”
These are the vows I made to my wife almost six years ago.
In the midst of all the strains of all the effort all of us put forth for our children, reminding yourself of the vows you made to your spouse can help you reclaim some perspective – on this day in particular for me. We can give so much to our children and all the day-to-day administrivia of our lives that everything turns into effort. It’s easy to lose track of joy.
When you’re ear-deep in evaluations, preschool planning, therapies, preschools, research, reading, phone calls and e-mails, work, home therapies and activities, and God-knows-what-else, and then you lack enough sleep and energy to make sense of even half of it, it’s easy to assume marriage will just work itself out along the way.
This is not a healthy assumption. There’s a reason why the divorce rate for people with special needs children are so high. It’s very hard, very consuming work, and it’s easy to lose track of your relationship in the middle of it. This is one of the essential parts of Mother’s Day they tend to forget on the cards.
Today, I give eternal thanks that I was able to marry my best friend in all the world to be the mother of our perfect little boy, and that together we have been given all the gifts and joys he brings to our life together.
I give even more thanks for the joy she brought to my life before he was born, and how that joy has multiplied each day since.
When I see her hold him, I get goose-bumps – every time. I see him kiss her and I know everything is right with the world.
I would also be remiss if I did not celebrate the fact that 2 1/2 years ago, this Wonder Woman gave birth ‘the old-fashioned way’ to a 9 lb 4 oz, 21 1/2″ long, 99.99th percentile head-sized boy. After he was out, she did everything but jump on the table and flex her biceps. I’m still in awe.
Today I commit to work harder to not be an ass so much of the time.
Today I vow to do a better job remembering that we are literally three-in-one, that you are the partner of all my days, the mother of our children, the companion of my house. I will stand beside you in joy or in sorrow, in ease and in conflict, putting the commitment we make today and every day above any obstacle that we may face.
This is my solemn vow.