Today Greg and I have been married two years.
It's not a lot.
But for us, it feels like a lot. It feels like we have conquered something, like we have been successful, like we should celebrate, dagnabit!
I wondered what to say today on the blog. I could tell you how Hubs and I met, but I already did that here. I could tell you how we fell in love, but I'm pretty sure I covered that here. Let's see, I could always give out a bunch of advice about marriage since I am so wise in the ways of marriage now.
But no. None of that quite seemed appropriate.
So instead I will tell you a story that isn't about marriage at all and yet somehow it is.
Last year we had Parent Teacher Conferences the last week of February. I had to stay at the school until 8 pm and a big old snowstorm was moving through. I watched out my window as the snow started innocently drifting down in the early afternoon, and then as it progressively got heavier, deeper, more ominous. I had a 45 minute commute ahead of me. In the dark. In the snowstorm. I kept looking at the clock. Surely it was 8 already. The minutes crawled on by.
About 7:45 the English head teacher poked her head in the room and said, "Bonnie. The snow's really coming down, I'm worried about you making it home okay. Go ahead and go early- I'll cover for you."
So I packed up and trudged out to the car, wiped down the windshield and cleared off the hood that were already covered in inches of seemingly innocuous snow. I put on my trusty gloves and climbed on in to my car.
The driving was slow and the roads were treacherous I tried to go 25-30 mph, but then realized that would be too fast as my car was slipping and sliding, slipping and sliding.
It's a scary feeling losing control of a car. Like you're too big for britches. Here you are operating this big old machine that is quite powerful and incredibly dangerous and now you can't control it. The car controls you. Suddenly the tables are turned and it is so incredibly terrifying. All you want to do is get out of that car and run for your life.
It wasn't until I turned onto Bangerter that I really started to freak out. The three lane 50 mph highway was covered in snow. There were no plows to be seen. I couldn't figure out where the lanes were. The snow was coming down so quickly and so heavily that it was difficult to see in front of you and straight up impossible to see the other cars on the road.
My phone was out of battery and suddenly I felt so very alone and wildly scared. Where would I go if I wrecked? How would I get home? How long would it take Greg to realize that I was late?
It's hard to describe the terror of the night, especially to someone who has never driven in severe snow conditions. "Hey! I drove home in a snowstorm! It was scary!" It doesn't sound like a big deal, I get it. But the reality was I was 40 miles from home with a car sliding all over the lanes, in sub freezing weather with no cell phone service.
I drove on, slowly steadily. Hands on the wheel, ten and two o'clock, white knuckled leaning forward, straining my eyes to see admist the wild snowstorm. I felt the car sliding beneath me, the wheels veering into the other lane. I tried to not panic, to slowly turn my car into the right lane and not think about if there were other cars in the lane.
And then I was crying. Tears just streaming down my face because I was scared and alone and so utterly helpless in that little corolla on a stormy night.
Throughout all of this I was kind of talking out loud/ rambling/ trying to strike some kind of deal with God. I don't know that I could ever classify it as prayer, but it was definitely some type of communication. And as I was doing this weird little communication with God I felt, of all things, an overwhelming love for Greg.
Greg. If I could just get home to Greg, just make it through this storm. If I could just be patient, and drive slow and be cautious and careful, Greg would be waiting for me. I just had to make it 37 more miles, and Greg would be there to keep me safe.
This was the thought that calmed me down. I was still scared, and the roads were still impossible to manage, but I just kept driving and thinking about Greg. Keeping my eye on the prize. Greg would be waiting for me, Greg would hold me and hug me, Greg would tell me I was brave and strong.
And two hours later, when I arrived safely home, he did. He did all of those things. He told me he was worried sick about me and what was I doing getting home after 10 o'clock on a school night? And I told him it was so scary and the roads were awful and he said he understood, but he really didn't. But I didn't need him to understand. I just needed him to hold me and stroke my hair and to tell me he loved me and to never let me go out in a snowstorm again.
I guess in those moments of sheer panic, of absolute terror, Greg was a sort of safety yo me. With tears running silently down my face, I thought about Greg and felt peace. He was my calm, my protection, my literal safety from the storm. If I could just get home to Greg, everything would be okay.
Now, I know this isn't that romantic. There's no flowers or flirting or kissing. But I guess that's not why I married Greg, and I guess that's not what I love most about him now. It's that I know he will always be there to protect me, to take care of me, and to keep me safe from big, scary snowstorms.
How's that for an anniversary story?
P.S. If you haven't entered this giveaway yet... well... you're going to want to.