Fifteen. I remember being that age – I was deeply in love at fifteen. I gave myself to a boy for the first time at fifteen. It was a boy in my high school who was not in my clique of friends and who everyone was surprised that I started seeing (or, as we said in those days, “going out with”). I was a cheerleader who ran with a smart, but not nerdy, crowd – all my friends and I were in the Honor Roll, sang in the choir, and participated in all the school plays and musicals. He was a long-haired, ear-ringed, goateed guy who ran on the track team. He was brilliant but was bored by school and he didn’t bother going to many of his classes. He wrote amazing poetry and he listened to a wide array of music, from alternative to punk to jazz. He was rebellious and starkly different from the other boys at school. He was a stranger who wasn’t tall, but was certainly dark and handsome. I was strangely attracted to him – stronger than any other teenage crush I had experienced in my short life. What did he see in me? Must have been my goofiness, sarcasm, and free-flowing love. They say opposites attract and we did.

It was fifteen years ago, in December 1994, only a few months after graduating from high school, that I married this boy. My parents were shocked and upset by the news of our engagement. I distinctly remember my dad quoting statistics that it wouldn’t last longer than a year and my grandma told me I dropped “a bombshell” on the family with the news. We thought we knew what we were doing, but in all honesty I was scared to death and we had no idea what we were doing – how could we? I, at a tender age of 18 and after going through a huge religious experience, could not know what to look for in a life partner.

And yet.

We’ve made it work for fifteen years. That number is staggering to me. How can I be old enough to be married for fifteen years? I have to believe that Providence had a hand in our relationship – that spark and connection we felt way back when we were only youngsters, it remains today. It’s cheesy, but I feel as if we were meant to be. I found my soul mate – I’m lucky and I know it.

We celebrated last night with pre-dinner drinks at Nashville’s best speak easy (I asked for something with ginger and pear and I received a lovely cocktail with sugared ginger and great spicy pear flavor) and Huz had a wonderful bourbon cocktail with coffee liquor and other goodness. We ate at a wonderful new restaurant called Miel. We enjoyed our meal very much. I started with a cheese plate that had 5 samplings of cheese from mild goat to salty sheep to an Italian cousin of Parmesan to a surprisingly strong brie to a sharp Irish blue. He had foie gras (sorry, PETA, but fifteen years is a big deal). For my entree I had an off-menu special that the chef had created that evening: suckling pork in a rich, earthy sauce served over roast squash and brie and cremini mushroom risotto. It was big and bold (I’m eating the leftovers for lunch as we speak) and amazing. Huz enjoyed a gorgeous venison dish with pureed cauliflower, brussel sprouts, and spaetzel. We both enjoyed a bottle of Cotes Du Rhone (it’s amazing how we used to struggle to get a bottle of wine down – what does that say about us now!?) and shared an amazing little dessert of pecan tart with chicory coffee ice cream. They served it with a long golden candle lit in honor of Huz’s belated birthday and our anniversary. The meal, the service, the conversation, and the company were all wonderful. I am very much looking forward to the continuation of our celebration as we take two days alone together in the beautiful town of Vail, Colorado in a couple of weeks. We will enjoy being just the two of us in this lovely room with this lovely Jacuzzi! Woot!

Huz – I’ll say it a million times over, but I am so blessed to have you as my best friend, my spouse, my lover, and my partner in parenting the lovely child we have created together. Thank you for who you are, for what you mean to me and Claire, and for loving me unconditionally through all the ups and downs over the last 15 years. I adore you.

xo,

VW

Prom 1992
prom 1992

Homecoming 1993
Homecoming - 1993

Our wedding 1994
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The Best Day Ever 2007
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December 2009
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