Nine years ago, I married this guy.
I wanted a life full of music; he said, “I’m good like that.”
I wanted a dog; he said, “Me, too!”
I wanted two dogs; he said, “Wait, are you sure?”
I wanted five babies; he said, “Let’s start with one.”
I wanted to stay home with our (then hypothetical) child(ren) and dog(s); he said, “Well, which do you want: the musician husband or the stay-at-home mom thing?”
“Both,” I said.
He said, “I’ll see what I can do.”
I wanted a partner, a playmate, a lover, a friend, someone to stick by through thick and through thin; he said, “I’m your guy.”
“I’m kind of a disaster sometimes,” I cautioned.
“I know,” he said. “I’ve got you covered.”
Story goes, the first time Aaron saw me walk into a bar, he said to a mutual friend of ours, “I’m going to marry that girl.” Although he insists that we met that night, he never tires of teasing me that I didn’t really notice him until I saw him up on stage playing lead guitar. He might be right. It doesn’t matter because when Aaron puts his mind to something, he is nothing if not tenacious in following through. Soon after meeting, we met for lunch, began to date, fell in love and spent as much time together as possible. I came to all his gigs with his band; he used a painting of mine as cover art for their album and a poem I’d written as lyrics for one of their songs. We spent a lot of time talking about building a future and a family together, however the first time he asked me to marry him, I said, “Yes! Wait, no. I mean, not yet…” I know it was rough on him, but he waited patiently for me. A year later, I was ready to take the plunge. On the day of my wedding, my sisters and bridesmaids and friends kept commenting on how calm and happy I seemed. The truth was, I was not nervous in the slightest. After a year of rumination followed by a year’s engagement, I was more than sure this was the right marriage for me. There is not a doubt in my mind that this is the man I want by my side for the rest of my days.
In 2004, Aaron set aside his music career aspirations to go to grad school. Ten years later, he is a scientist and an academic, working his tail off to establish himself in his field and make a good life for our family. He may not be chasing the music dream these days, but in the evenings he still pulls out his guitar and fills our house with music. He’s no longer playing for the satisfaction of anyone but himself. I think he sounds better than ever.