Dear Christopher,
If there has been any silver lining to the past few weeks, it has been you. In the midst of mutually giving up every spare moment of our time to this little tiny one and the busiest toddler in the world, we have somehow remained maritally unscathed. Your arms feel safer than ever, as I watch you carry Kaiden, football style, for hours on end. I know that you will do the same for me when I need it. You pull more than your weight, and you don't complain.

And here we are, at the end of another summer that ripped right by us as days turned into nights and nights turned into days of baby/toddler world. And still, you managed to get those freckles from the August sun that I love so much. They pepper your face. There is one on your eyelid that I trace down to another on the curve of your mouth when you are asleep. And I love you more than I ever did.

It has been almost six years since I met you for the very first time. Though it seems like a lifetime. I can't even recognize the girl I was then. We have irrevocably changed.

It's as if I have been watching the movie of two peoples' lives in fast-forward. You changed so quickly from a boy to a man. When I met you in college, you were unsure of yourself, as we all were. You had your brave face on. The boy who constantly wore black Red Hot Chili Pepper shirts with skater shoes and an i-pod full of loud music. Was that really you?

I'm slightly afraid to even say this out loud because it seems so childish--like believing in Santa or the toothfairy--but I believe you are my soul mate.

I imagine an older, wiser person looking at me knowingly, then saying, "that's so....nice" with a condescending smile.

I've heard it a few times this year. Your husband is not your soul mate. Love is a choice. Marriage is about commitment. Sacrifice. 

I am so thankful that marriage is about commitment and sacrifice--but what if I secretly believe that you are my soul mate? What if I need to believe this so that I understand love and sacrifice and commitment?

We are not just making this work. That would be far too hard. We are not eternally bound to one another like two people running a two-legged race, awkwardly crashing into one anothers' shoulder all the way to the finished line.

We are one person. We grow more and more toward one another, like two vines on a trellis, twisting until you can't tell where one starts and the next begins.

When we have a second of silence, when the noise of our day quiets around us and we lay arm-to-arm, we talk about our lives. We talk like God has it all figured out. Like there is a plan. Like everything we are and everything we do is a part of a big cosmic universe that God has ordained. Like it is holy, this experience of me and you.

It is holy the way it was when Zoe and Kaiden were born. The moments where we both clutched tiny hands and realized shakily that we had been given the incredible gift of life to hold together. That is how I experience our marriage. Like me and you were always together, from the beginning of time. Meant to be.

And maybe that seems a little bit too Disney. Maybe we are totally cliche. Maybe someday we will turn to each other and wonder if there was a different path. But I hope not. I want to fiercely believe in this. I have to fiercely believe in you and I because I am not sure that I could last a lifetime if I didn't believe you belonged to me, now and forever.

I know it when you kiss me. I know it when you tell me you don't have a dream because the dream is what we are living--two beautiful children, a tiny apartment, a pile of student loans, and a soul mate.