This is love...
Marriage is full of ups and downs. Whether you are married 3 days or 30 years there is always bound to be a moment when your spouse surprises you.
A couple of weeks ago I was in a bad car accident. The after effects have been deeper than I thought they would be, and some of them have been unexpected.
Tonight my husband came home and handed me this. I was sitting in a chair, mindlessly looking through Facebook when he walked up to me and handed it to me. I looked at it, and then looked up at him with a puzzled look on my face.
He looked at me and said he forgot it had been in his pocket. He told me he had gone to the tow yard to clear out our personal belongings from our car when he saw this lying on the driver's seat. It must have been blown from the steering wheel when the air bag deployed. He said as he stood there looking at my car he couldn't help but think about all the places it had taken us, some actual places, and others just places in time...memories.
We bought this car when our nine-year-old was still in diapers. It was New Year's Eve and my husband was negotiating with the salesman while I chased our toddler around his office. I didn't bring the diaper bag because we didn't expect to actually buy something and for some unknown reason to me, I thought I wouldn't need it. My toddler proceeded to crouch under the salesman's desk and stink up the entire office. We are convinced to this day that it is part of the reason we walked out of there with an SUV we weren't originally sure we could afford.
We traveled to preschool and music class in that car. I nervously drove my husband to his open heart surgery in that car. We held hands and I tried to fake being as calm as possible because I knew how nervous he was. The truth is I was a wreck. I drove back and forth from the hospital for a week in that car and happily brought him back home. Safe, sound, and healthy.
We traveled to many summer vacations in that car. Far too many with our oldest screaming the entire ride, and finally falling asleep minutes before we arrived at our destination. We laughed until we cried, two frustrated, new parents who had no clue just how difficult, but amazing it would all be.
He drove me to the hospital while I was in labor with our youngest son. We brought him home in that car. We quite literally drove home the child who completed our family in that car.
We played many games of I Spy, and the License plate game in that car. We listened to way too many knock, knock jokes that made little to no sense.
We spent more time than we can count looking in the rear view mirror at two little boys giggling, and sleeping. Sure it brought us places, but I never really thought about how many years of memories we made in that car.
Tonight when he handed me this he said he knew I would probably think it was silly, but he just felt like after all the memories we made in the car, we needed to keep a little piece of it.
Silly? I sat there trying not to cry. You see most people would say I'm the sentimental person in our relationship. I write dates on wine corks, and save our kids art work. I keep all of our Christmas cards and things like movie tickets. Tonight after 12 1/2 years of marriage he surprised me. He is just as sentimental as I am.
People think love is about big proclamations or constant butterflies. The truth is, real love is about the smallest moments that show you both just how much your life together means. He handed me a car decal tonight, but with it he gave me all of our memories that I didn't even realize I would miss so much.
This is love.
This post originally appeared on Outsmarted Mommy.