21 Years


You see those two kids there?


That was twenty one years ago.

Two decades. Two decades of change, worry, battles. Life in the storm.

She wasn’t as worried as she looks. And he was far more terrified than he appears.

But he couldn’t believe his luck, and knew how hard he could work to deserve her.

They both did not know so many things.

Their future, a chasm, its depths shrouded in fog.

They both did not know so many things.

But I know.

If I could go to them, twenty one years ago, I would tell them.

I would tell her that she’s good enough. That he adores her. That she needs to set her worries down, because life is too short to be afraid of what other people think. That he will die for her if she needs him to, and that, twenty one years later, he never changed or wavered. That she has just become his best friend, and his payment for that debt is absolute loyalty, no matter who or what comes to them.

That he will figure it out; his anger, his issues, his past, his pain; because of her grace and her gentleness, and he will forever be devoted to her for it. That there will never be enough money, so stop trying to reach the moon with her bare hands. That she will give birth to two strong, brilliant men who will shine with her best qualities, and will emerge into this world champions because of her limitless belief and love for them. That she needs to hug her father more. That her mother will always be there for her, no matter what. That, at 46, she is beautiful, living in a home in Lunenburg that they own, and that she will be taken care of.

I would tell him that he’s going to make it. That he won’t die on her, or destroy the best thing that’s ever happened to him. That he will find peace in the death of his demons someday, and find grace in their passing. That there is a day coming when the angry, scared little boy can come out from under the table. That he will one day take a deep, deep breath and allow himself to smile. That his pain is a furnace, and he will forge incredible things with it, tempered and strong and not destructive. That he will be a nurse. That he would change things in unimaginable ways that help people. That the pain in his body he has every day will never go away, but if he keeps training, it will become noise and nothing more. That the lungs will not collapse again and he will climb mountains with them.

That she will be with him twenty one years from now. That she has something in her brain, and it will change things, and she will need him, and he will step up, and that it will give him the chance to pay her back for guiding him through how to live like a human being and not a hunted animal. That Steve was going to marry Brenda, and be fine. That mom will probably outlive all of us. That he will lose incredible people like Wayne and Earl, and he needs to visit them. That he is going to own a poodle, a toy poodle at that, and not a wolf, because she said so.

That you will actually buy her a tiara.

That he will pull towards him the most amazing people who will bring out the best in him. That a pack of men will gravitate towards him and always be on call, because of what he means to each of them. That he is not a mistake.

That he will have two sons who love him. That he needs to listen to her, and soften as much as he can and save himself years of struggle. That she’s right about the world and about people. That he will never shut down his vigilance, because he can’t, and that’s okay, and that it’s good to always be ready, but for twenty one years, nothing is going to happen. That he can save his energy for later. That he is going to write a book, but not the one he thinks, and that many more are coming. That he’s not his father, and never will be.

That she is with him through it all. That he’s going to make mistakes, and he has to stop being terrified of them, and has to learn how to fix them. That she’s real and true; exactly what he sees in her right now, and that he still won’t believe his luck, even after the grey lines his beard.

That every day with her is a gift, and to keep relishing it, because he was right about how lucky he is.

I would tell them.

“You kids just relax. You got this.”

They both did not know so many things.

But I know.

And I thank them.

Thank you, Lesley, for showing them how it’s done. I love you more than the moment this picture was taken.


Happy 21st Anniversary, love.

Here’s to the next two decades.



Filed under Uncategorized

2 responses to “21 Years

  1. Ahhhh… This is so sweet that I don’t have words to comment with. Well done.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s