Happy Birthday Nelson!
We ate and lingered over easy conversation, blue-skying about the future. I remember Nelson telling me that he was definitely going to retire early, at 30 hopefully. I'm sure he talked about how he was going to make this happen but I was too doe-eyed to pay too much attention to that part. However, my ears perked up when he said it was his dream to build his own house some day. This was not something I expected to hear from the man I had fallen in love with. I couldn't wrap my mind around the picture of this preppy, clean-cut, white-collar boy getting his hands all grubby and calloused. I couldn't see it, but I wanted to be there to experience it. Oh how I hoped he wanted me to be there too.
Tonight, as we took turns honoring him over some hot caramel apple tarts, I saw us in that moment so very long ago. We were younger with fewer responsibilities then. And yet, tonight there was so much more to honor him for as we sat in this beautiful house he built. Each year has unveiled another gift and a deeper understanding of his motivation.
Every challenge we've faced, fear we've conquered and goal we've achieved strengthens a foundation more important than this house. Together we have done so much more than build a house. We've created a home, a family and a way of life.
Nelson, I'm so glad you were born. I'm so grateful you chose me. I can't wait to see what the future holds. Happy Birthday!