When You Know You Know
I like love. I like that love is goofy and versatile; fun and sneaky; special and messy; exhausting, yet beautiful and kind.
What impresses me the most is how unique love can be and how love grows even more unique as the years go by. It’s pretty sticky-sweet to think of love as a personal collection of little memories, inside jokes, and forgettable arguments that change over time. And when the waters get rough, I have to step back for a minute—think about the love that’s in my life and consider what that love means to me. I mean, my life would’ve had a completely different trajectory had I not met my husband.
This June we came up on three years of marriage, which isn’t much in the grand scheme of Betrothalhood, but lately, I find myself thinking about what might’ve transpired if I didn’t trust my gut 5 years ago. What if I listened to the naysayers in my life who told me I was a fool to think that my now-husband was “The One?”
Okay “The One” is too loaded-seeming to me and makes me feel as though I’m in a real-life version of The Bachelorette, so I’m gonna use the term “my person.” Yes, Grey’s Anatomy fans if you think that sounds familiar, you’re right—I definitely nabbed that phrase from the show. But at any rate, it’s true (cheesy, but true)! He is my human. I have total confidence in him, our love, and our ability to navigate any variety of things that life presents. I have faith in him to be honest and true to himself. I also trust him to totally tick me off every now and again. Like when he leaves his shoes smack dab in the middle of the room as though a ghost stepped out of them and left them there to retire for eternity. That’s love for you though. Equal parts sneaky, irritating, forgivable, and heart-filling.
Though, I’d be lying if I said I knew what love meant to me before I met my person. To be honest, I thought I’d never be in a relationship with one person for an extended period of time—much less get hitched. I’d always heard the phrase “when you know you know” but I didn’t imagine I’d find it where I did—which was in a one person out of a group of whiskey-hungover dudes who needed someone to show them a place to go rock climbing outside of Missoula, Montana. Believe me, that was the last place I thought I’d meet The One.
Our story is somewhat akin to a fairytale. But leading up to that moment my life felt like a hot mess. You could say I was having an early twenties crisis: I had just resigned from a good job, I didn’t have a car, I was in high north Montana, and I was super-duper broke and in debt. To say the least, I was freaking out. I didn’t know what my next move would be—so I panicked, drank a lot of tequila, and ended up with an atrocious hangover that lasted two days.
Forty-eight hours and 20 episodes of How I Met Your Mother later, I hopped into the back of a Toyota Corolla to take some guys rock climbing and there he was in the front seat: my person. I certainly didn’t know it at the time and was far from impressed considering the motley state he and his friends were in. Truth be told it took the whole day for me to figure out that I liked him and then some. But as it turned out, my person was moving to Boston, MA—the very city that I had zero desire to move to.
So I went out on a limb (read: spoke without thinking) and asked him if he needed a cross-country copilot. He didn’t but wasn’t opposed to the company. So I called my Mom and told her I was coming home and possibly for a while. I didn’t know what was in store for my person and I, but somewhere between our departure date and the state of Wisconsin, we decided we wanted to spend the rest of our lives together.
When I told friends and family this I was met with a lot of negativity.
“You don’t even know each other.”
“You’re too young.”
“You haven’t spent enough time on your own.”
“You’re making a huge mistake.”
“You’re not fit for marriage.”
“You haven’t been dating long enough to know.”
And so on. It truly bummed me out that we didn’t have the positive reaction that we wanted. At the time I misunderstood this as a lack of support, when in reality it was simply my closest friends and family looking out for me and my best interest. No one wanted to see me unhappy in a relationship (which, all things considered, makes sense). That said, there was plenty of underlying critiques as it pertained to our future: a lot of folks tried to discourage us from getting hitched right off the bat or even committing ourselves preemptively to a lifetime together. People thought we didn’t know each other well enough to do that. But in our heart of hearts, we both knew that we were the ones for each other. So what happened in light of our relationship not meeting the status quo? We ignored it, committed ourselves to forever and waited a few years to get hitched—and it was the best decision we have ever, ever, ever made. My person is my best friend and also the biggest pain-in-my-butt I’ve ever had, but I cannot imagine my life without him. It is that much more filled with love, adventure, and obstacles and I wouldn’t trade it for the world. I’m happy I didn’t listen to the naysayers: I trusted myself and my person to make a decision in our best interest. How can I argue with that?
I can’t. I can argue with the rough spots, the mistakes, and the annoying habits we both have, but at the end of the day—he’s my person.
In the time that I’ve taken to write this, my husband has 1. “Danced” around my desk with the dogs 2. Brought one of our chickens into the house for me to say hello to 3. Accidentally turned the hockey game on obtrusively loud and 4. Brought me a glass of wine. All these things are small, sweet gestures (albeit sometimes annoying ones too)—they remind me of where we started and the love that we’ve cultivated between the two of us as the years have passed by. So, I’ll cheers to that and many more in-between.
Image via Melissa Sonico
Monique Seitz-Davis is a writer, crazy plant lady, and snack aficionado based out of Salt Lake City, Utah. She runs uphill for fun and believes in magic.