This Is Us

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I didn’t participate in the thousands of crock-pot discussions that have peppered social media in recent weeks. Truth be told, I have only seen the pilot episode of This is Us. I liked it but not enough to watch another episode. At least, not right now. Milo Ventimigila wasn’t even enough (Team Jesse).  I’ve never really full-on embraced a weekly network television drama to the point where I have to watch the latest episode. It’s not in my blood. I’m sure I’ll end up watching This is Us the same way as Parenthood – on Netflix at my own pace.

But this post isn’t about the hit television show. Nor is about the Mark Knopler and Emmylou Harris song This Is Us from their 2006 album, All The Roadrunning (sigh – such a great album). Today is Valentine’s Day – the day makers of giant teddy bears and bad chocolate rely on to keep them in the black for the year. In our house, we acknowledge the day and exchange little gifts with the kids and each other but we’d rather chew off our own arms than go out to eat tonight and he knows better than to give me jewelry. Clay will be back after the sun sets so my gift to him this year involves bombarding his phone with questionable love-related GIFs and an inappropriate card I picked up at Target. Love is not dead in this house, folks.

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We have been together for almost 17 years (!) – that’s almost half my life, folks! In honor of Valentine’s Day, I decided to write a little memo to highlight why he is the cheeseburger to my milkshake, the boy I’ve loved since I was 18, and the peanut butter to my jelly. So without further ado – this is us…

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The night we met, I had my hair in two braids and he offered me a double shot of Peach Schnapps. A group of us then went out to dinner and a movie. We sat next to each other at Cracker Barrel and ate pancakes while entertaining each other with pop culture references. However, he didn’t sit next to me at the movie so I figured that he wasn’t interested (womp womp).

I didn’t find out that he was an ROTC cadet until we had been dating for a couple of weeks. He showed up at my room in full-on camouflage face paint.

We broke up after dating for three months. We got back to together shortly after. And then broke up again. We were young and we found ourselves getting very serious very fast. Spoiler alert – we got back together soon after and decided it was futile to fight the obvious – we were meant to be together.

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Which is why we were 21 and 22 when we threw caution to the wind and were the first of our friends to get hitched . At our wedding, the pastor chastised us for carrying on a conversation with each other during the ceremony. We were just so excited to be getting married and couldn’t help but talk to each other.

Five days after our wedding, we bought a Jeep from FX Caprara that was on display in the Salmon Run Mall in Watertown, New York from a guy nicknamed “The Hammer”. I’d like to say that our impulsive tendencies have improved over the years but eh…life is more fun this way.

While in labor with Weston, he snuck me Nutter Butters when the nursers weren’t looking. He still surprises me with them occasionally and Weston reports that they are his favorite sweet snack.

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We have a secret language that we typically use under our breaths when around other people and we’re not above wearing matching John Stamos shirts in public.

One of my favorite memories of us is also one of the saddest scenes on our highlight reel. It was such a raw moment but it was authentic and real and an experience that exemplified what it means to be human.

We can’t decide if our song is Take Me Home Tonight by Eddie Money or You Got It by Roy Orbison. Both are special for different reasons. We both have stamped leather key chains with lyrics from You Got It so perhaps that one should reign supreme (yes – I realize that is sort of sickeningly sweet). And when I reached out to Eddie Money for an autographed headshot to give to Clay a few anniversaries ago, he NEVER responded! Eddie Money is on thin ice with me but I can’t give up on that iconic song. It means to much to us.

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I’m always suggesting places to go and he is almost aways 100% onboard and quick to say “Okay, how do we make this happen?”

We still laugh like little kids when we think back to the time we ended up at a nude beach by mistake and there are very few movies we don’t quote on a regular basis just to make the other one smile.

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{This is one of the appropriate ones I could share….}

We both have a twisted and weird sense of humor. I’m sure some people would be horrified if they were to read our text messages but that is what makes us awesome.

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I realize that I am lucky and I hope to never take for granted that I’m able to walk through life with my best friend by my side. Our life isn’t easy. But it is ours. And it is a pretty damn good one. This is us. And I hope he knows that I’d carry a watermelon for him any day.

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4 comments on “This Is Us”

  1. I just read every word of this and smiled the whole way through. I love the throwback pictures. You guys are perfect together!

    Like

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