December 14’s prompt for Reverb10 was Appreciate: “What’s the one thing you have come to appreciate most in the past year? How do you express gratitude for it?” As I’ve focused on an attitude of gratitude during 2010, I’ve grown to appreciate more deeply many parts of my life. In being forced to choose, I’d have to say the one “thing” I’ve come to appreciate most in 2010 is my partner. We’ve been together for 14 years and I have been immensely grateful for him in my life. I’ve been grateful for the ways in which he has changed his life in large part for me and what I was pursuing. We moved from the east coast to the Midwest, away from all of our family and friends, in our first year of marriage for me to attend graduate school at my top choice program. We chose to live apart for one year so that I could do my internship in Oregon (have I mentioned how much I LOVE Oregon?). We moved further into the Midwest for me to have the career I had been working toward for the previous 8 years. And, he was a rock while I had the health crisis of my life, calming be down, being “cautiously optimistic,” and trusting so completely that I would kick cancer’s ass. So, yes, I have been grateful to him for the ways he has altered his life for me, and for the steadiness he provides me in times of crisis and stress. But truly appreciating him? I think it reached a new level during this past year.
Throughout 2010, I began to truly see and appreciate the ways he lets me be me. Completely me in all the ugly and beautiful ways. I appreciate how he understands my desperate need to travel, my constant trip planning, and my near-monthly trips away from him (and our babes…I mean dogs). As much as I know he’d prefer me to stay home more frequently and be content with that, he has never asked me not to travel. He simply abides while I do my thing, and he respects my wanderlust. I also appreciate that he goes along for the ride. I have many a hair-brained idea, from making dinner and weekend plans for the both of us without consulting him to signing us up for a documentary of all things, and he goes with it. I appreciate the space he gives me as I’m in a constant state of reinvention. He urges me on, bolstering me in my evolution of self. I appreciate the way he balances my Type A tendencies and my picky-ness (which he would diplomatically refer to as me being “particular”). I appreciate his patience, his forgiveness, his silliness. I appreciate his unwavering loyalty and his love.
I could be much better at expressing this appreciation. This post is one small step in rectifying that (if he reads it!). I think I’ll make him some chocolate chip cookies, too. xoxo