When the album Ten by Pearl Jam was released in August of 1991, I was but a child on the verge of entering eighth grade. Cortney was about to enter seventh grade at the same middle school.
We had not officially met each other yet let alone gotten ourselves swept away by Eddie Vedder’s croony voice and Mike McCready’s mad guitar skills. We were both incredibly awkward, scrawny, and pretty much mostly neck and pimples.
But by the time that school year would end, both of us would become friends with a sibling pair that would lead to our meeting, our love of Pearl Jam, our close friendship, and yes, a wedding, babies, etc.
Our story is not only one I didn’t think I would get, but one I didn’t think I wanted. Yet it’s the most lovely example of why I just cannot believe in coincidences.
Today we celebrate our tenth wedding anniversary.
It was my favorite day.
As much as I can point to the births of all three of my children as life-changing events, my wedding day is my most beloved memory. It was the most fun and I felt the most beautiful and we smiled and laughed. There was dancing and laughing and hugging and kissing.
Plus it was the day Cortney and I officially took our status as “best friends” to the next level in front of everyone we loved. We said out loud all the promises we knew in our heart.
It was an amazing day.
Yet we had no idea what was ahead of us.
There has been a lot of struggle and challenge in the past ten years, but you know what? We never ever stopped the laughter.
This past weekend we decided to take a quick, 30-hour trip without the kids. On our honeymoon we daydreamed about coming back to Myrtle Beach and staying in a super fancy pants hotel for our tenth anniversary. Or going somewhere with a swim-up bar. Something much fancier than the meager road trip to the Mystic Sea Resort (Pro-tip: “Resort” does not always mean “resort”.)
That wasn’t in the cards this year.
We just had a baby for one thing, and for all the other things…well…let’s just say it wasn’t in the cards.
But we knew we needed to get away and just be with each other for longer than a dinner. We needed to be alone and laugh and be on our own schedule, even if just for a day.
So we drove three hours to Six Flags and rode rollercoasters and giggled about how it has been almost sixteen years since we rode a rollercoaster together.
We said stupid stuff and laughed about it.
We giggled at farts without having to tell anyone that “toots are not appropriate”.
We had more than one cocktail with dinner.
We listened to the Pearl Jam channel on sirius XM a LOT and sang along and reminisced about the shows we’ve seen and how, in high school along with our friends, we would pile in someone’s car in search of the latest Pearl Jam “bootleg”. We heard tunes from Atlanta: The Day Before, and laughed about how hard to get that was at one time.
Pearl Jam has ten studio albums out to date.
I feel like “ten” is lucky.
I can’t wait to laugh and rock through our next ten years. For now, I’ll just go dig up a wicked awesome version of “Porch” and jam out to the guitar solo.
Did I say that I need you?
Did I say that I want you?
Oh, if I didn’t I’m a fool you see
No one knows this more than me
(lyrics from “Just Breathe” by Pearl Jam, of course)