On my journal · On photography

Our first anniversary!

Well, we made it. So far, so good. This will be the first time in six years of being together that we will celebrate an anniversary. I’ve never really understood the point of prenuptial anniversaries because what date do you decide is the countdown starter? The day you met? Your first date? Kiss? When you became ‘Facebook official’? That’s always seemed silly to me. How the heck do you remember those dates anyway? Diary entries? Well, now we actually have a day that resembles our relationship. That’s pretty neat. It’s fun to get lovey-dovey sometimes! Plus, life gets in the way so often that it can become really easy to lose sight of what’s important. Now, at least one day out of the year can be set aside to kick back and reflect on what brought us here in the first place. I’m not so anti-social-norms that I’m against celebrating our love. We are awesome! The whole world should join us in festivities. We can party and smash things and everyone can form a conga line around us. I’m down.

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Okay, let me try to be serious for a moment because I’m always the first person to dismiss any sappy thoughts. I feel like I love at a rate much higher than most others, but I’ve always been awful at expressing my feelings. I’m awkward, what can I say? I have this terrible fear of being vulnerable and getting hurt so I bottle up my emotions and hide behind my goofiness. I need people to think that I’m strong- that I don’t need anybody else for anything. I’ve always been this way. Thanks to super special circumstances, I’m briefly shedding my hard shell to show off the disgusting gooey love mush that I’ve been hiding for the past six years. Brace yourselves.

I question everything about my life and the choices I have made. Every day I attack myself for things that I can’t change, but I’ve never been more sure about anything than I am about this man. Yeah, we’ve both had our share of times screwing things up, but I know it’s alright because, in the end, there is only Alex and myself. Will we have a family? What careers will we land? Will we always financially struggle? Where will we live? Will it be right here, where we met, or in the hills of southern California, where we dream? I don’t know where, but I will be there with him. I would choose to struggle with him rather than to live easily without him. I would choose it over and over again. Hell, maybe we’ll fail. Maybe one day we will look at one another and realize that sparkle that we once saw in each other’s eyes is no longer there. Even then, I wouldn’t change a thing. I would much prefer to have experienced this sweetness with a risk of it becoming sour than never having any of it to begin with.

I already feel lucky enough to have air inside my lungs, but I can’t even begin to grasp what I ever did to deserve to be so confused by these unexplainable feelings. Just the thought of him brings so much warmth to me. His voice is like music. His hair is as wild and unruly as his spirit. He is an artist. There’s this wild light in his eyes that shows me the child inside of him has never grown up. Every second with him feels weightless. We are kids again. He is the great blue sky and I am just a cloud being swallowed up. I think I’ve had a smile on my face since the day I realized he was becoming a part of my story. He has shown me a love that is so deeply and inherently good. One day, the air I just inhaled will be my last and no matter what happens to us in the days to come, I will never be one of those people that dies not knowing what it was like to be given this shout-it-from-a-rooftop happiness. This has been my most interesting friendship of all time. I will always cherish these days. I am fortunate to have conquered this year with such a brilliant person by my side. Alex is the water to my fire. He is my voice of reason. He is everything that I could ever wish upon any of my loved ones. Sure, he isn’t perfect. Neither am I. I would never try to pretend that we are anything different from this chaotic beam of light, but I am happy. Whole-heartily, genuinely, passionately HAPPY. Everyone deserves that.

To give you an idea of the kind of person Alex is, last year, when we got married, we engraved secret messages into our other’s wedding band. We waited to see what the other had written. To nobody’s surprise, I chose to cover up my tenderness with my humor, writing “put it back on” inside of his. He wrote “to infinity and beyond” because he is your typical, cheesy love bird. He is the same man that buys me new flowers every. single. week. because he knows how much I love fresh flowers in the house. He creeps up behind me while I’m cooking and kisses me on my neck, sending shivers down my spine. He is a lover. He is everything.

The ONLY regret I have is that I didn’t get married the way I had always wanted to. While most other women are clicking away on pinterest trying to design every aspect of their “dream wedding”, all I ever wanted was to get eloped in Vegas. The good ol’ tacky way, too. Elvis and all. All of our friends and family knew about our future plans to get hitched. We talked about it constantly. When Alex and I decided to be married, we wanted to keep it a secret. We planned on surprising everyone with a picture of elvis’ arms around our shoulders. Instead, we chose to at least include our family. (This is where I went wrong.) My mom, like any other I’m sure, absolutely hated the idea of not being able to witness her only daughter say those two words. She asked for a special exception, to be our one witness. Obviously, I eventually agreed…then came the other family members. Soon after, I had about ten witnesses on my side alone. The idea of going across the country to elope seemed too unrealistic at this point.

I won’t pretend like our wedding day wasn’t absolutely flawless, because it totally was, but it was SO STRESSFUL. The exact reason why I wanted to have a private ceremony to begin with. Did you know that weddings have themes? Or that you need to purchase RSVP cards for your guests to send back to you? Or that wearing a black lace dress is some kind of wedding no-no? I was absolutely clueless. I had no color schemes or dinner menu templates. I didn’t give a shit about those parts. My only envision was me, in a black dress, and Alex, in a suit with a top hat and cane, answering, “do you take so and so to be your hunk, a hunk of burnin love?” with a “hell yes!” Then cue the round of shots that we immediately take with the impersonator. What a dream!

Really though, guys, our wedding was fantastic. My family blew me away with every tiny detail. I owe the fact that it all came together so well to them. I couldn’t thank them enough. They really helped a girl out. My anxiety doesn’t like taking on tasks as big as that. AS MANY OF Y’ALL NOTICED WITH MY THANK YOU CARDS. Please, don’t ever think we aren’t appreciative. I am beyond thrilled that so many people came to celebrate our love, but opening the gifts afterwards was really one of those tear-jerking moments. The messages inside those cards made me speechless. I wanted to make my thank yous just as personal and special for each and every person that attended. I spent hours writing and tossing messages. I felt like after the 50th card, it was all becoming repetitive and wasn’t correctly interpreting the gratitude that I wanted to express. I bought four different sets of cards, hating each set more than the last. Nothing ever seemed good enough. There are no words equivalent to the gratefulness in our hearts. We love you all. We are thankful for you all.

Obviously, being married for one year makes me no expert, but I’m going to give you my advice anyway!

HAVE THE WEDDING THAT YOU WANT TO HAVE. ESPECIALLY IF THAT MEANS NOT HAVING A WEDDING.

Happiness should always be your resting state.

My love has never been sacrificial. Yours doesn’t have to be either.

It’s perfectly okay if they are a protagonist, but this novel is YOURS to write. Individuate.

Infatuation fizzles. Keep riding. Afterall, the falls are the best part of any roller coaster.

You never need to settle for anything, especially not when it comes to love. The world isn’t always sparkly, precise, and white picket fence-y. Don’t make your expectations unrealistic because you’ve watched too many Disney movies. It isn’t always “happy ever after”. Some days really suck. Choosing to fight rather than give up is what proves a lasting, strong love. My forever promise to Alexander isn’t summarized by one ‘special day’. It’s ALL of our days, combined. Especially our worst ones! (Yeah, guys, we have those. We’re just as screwed up as the rest of you.) Those days that we both are so mentally drained and emotionally exhausted with one another that throwing in the towel would be our easiest option. Those days that everything the other person does literally makes your teeth itch because you’re so disgusted with them. Happiness isn’t a permanent emotion. It comes in waves. Being able to distinguish the fact that “this too shall pass” is our strong suit. Working hard every single day to make our relationship endure is our promise. Our marriage has nothing to do with it. That was our business union. And I don’t expect to convince the people who think I need legal documentation to prove I’m in love with my guy to agree with me. You shouldn’t either.

Who cares if EVERY OTHER PERSON ON THIS PLANET thinks you’re doing it wrong. The thing to remember here is that you’re doing it, so do it your way.

Be with someone that doesn’t feel the need to change you.

Someone you can cohabitate with.

Someone you are comfortable with.

Someone that supports and encourages you through all your life endeavors.

Someone that fills you with warmth and raw emotion. Someone, that even though sometimes they drive you to pure insanity, makes you feel more alive than you’ve ever felt.

Someone that you respect. Someone that gives you that same amount of respect, in return.

Someone whose company you enjoy.

That’s the person you should be with. For me, that is my Alexander.

If you have ever been close to anyone or anything you love, it hits you: we are all so weak and easily broken. A baby’s tiny beating heart, your dog’s unconditional love, the pulse of blood against your ear as you lie on your lover’s chest, the glimmer of pride and anticipation in your parents’ eyes as you are about to walk into the world alone– it’s all so easily taken. The crudest of objects can destroy the most complex forms of life. Next time you look at someone you love, tell them everything you’ve always wanted to tell them. Fill them with the warmth you’ve been holding back. There’s only one little muscle between life and death. Don’t forget that they are not invincible just because you wouldn’t be able to live without them.

Beavis, my dearest, I love you so. Happy first anniversary.

Now, let’s get this conga line started!

Here are some random pictures of us throughout the years. Notice how often Alex’s look changes. It’s almost like falling in love with a new guy every few months. Woot! Woot!

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XOXO,

Cosmo! ♥ ♥ ♥

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