Sunday, November 10, 2013

Soul Mates & Veterans & Birthday Parties

I am one-of-a-kind.

Ok, I know we are all one-of-a-kind, but I am...unique.  That's something I have long embraced.

When God created my soul, he made me creative but practical, traditional but free-thinking, classic but retro/vintage, frugalistic with expensive taste.  I LOVE history, but am strongly drawn to modern design.  I love to laugh & play & explore.  I love to sit by myself in the quiet of my home and think & plan and plan some more.  I love to serve and be among people, but I am terribly shy.  I love to share, but am fearful of others' opinions of me.

Basically, God made me a walking contradiction.

But, when he formed my one-of-a-kind soul, he also made someone special just for me.  Or, actually, I was made for that someone special, seeing as how his soul was formed before mine.

Well, however or whenever these two souls were formed, they were made with just the right holes and protuberances so that they fit together so perfectly you would never know they were ever two.

My mom told me once, just before our wedding, that she had prayed each and every day for my future husband.  That he be a Godly man, my perfect mate, someone just for me.  And he is.  My best friend.

But little did we know that that man, the someone just for me, would one day be a soldier.  A veteran.


Veteran's Day used to pass as just another day.  I'm really embarrassed to admit that.

While it's no excuse, growing up I never had any real interaction with soldiers or veterans.  I studied wars in school, understood that people were in the military and they could go to war, but didn't know anyone close to me who had served, so it wasn't a "reality" for me.  And I had yet to live through a war.

Of course, that all changed that day in September.

My senior year of high school.  My hubby -- then boyfriend of just a few months -- had already enlisted that summer of 2001.  But we knew, after that day, he wasn't going to just be a soldier in the Army.

He would serve his country in war...overseas.

And he did.  We debated splitting up, with me going off to college, him going to basic training, then later overseas.  We'd be apart so much.

But neither one of us was ready to let go of what we had.  We already knew in our hearts what we hadn't yet voiced out loud:  our souls were formed for one another.

So, here we are.  12 years later.  And each day, I see more and more why we were destined for one another.  He is everything I'm not, yet everything I am.

He makes me laugh, dries my tears, supports my creativity, explores with me, lets me brood while I'm mad and listens when I vent, gets the random weirdness that comes out of my mouth sometimes.  He imagines with me, plays with me, brings me back down to Earth when my ideas go way out there, or my taste gets a little too expensive.  He crafts & designs with me, indulges me, aggravates me, loves me for me.  He plans with me, is spontaneous with me.  I could probably go on.  And I won't speak for him, but I hope I do the same for him.

Because God made us each other's compliments.  How lucky am I?!

So I live everyday with a veteran -- have one as a father-in-law as well -- and it is now such a personal holiday to me now.  Is that selfish?  But not just on Veteran's Day do I appreciate what my husband, and SO MANY others, have done, but everyday.  Because I've seen the effects of war, felt the stress of it, understand how fragile life can be.


Birthdays are just a bit more special because of what could have been.  Another blessing we have been given.

This year was my hubs 30th.  I cringe to think of it because I'm next, but it means I was blessed with another year with him.  And because this was the big 3-0, I wanted to do something extra special.  Something fun.

And how glad am I that my partner-in-life is just as much a kid at heart as I am!!

Not only is my hubby a vet/former soldier, but he is also a police officer.  That has been a passion of his heart as much as being a soldier for as long as I've known him.  And I'm sure other police wives would say the same, but he is such a good cop.

But, that little kid living inside of him -- the little boy that wants to be a policeman when he grows up -- absolutely loves toy police cars.  And that same little boy who became a policeman when he grew up collects toy police cars.

And, ohmygoodness, does that boy have a collection!!  I think he's at 250+, maybe even 300+.  Yikes!  But he loves it, and I just can't seem to say no when he finds a new one to add.  The joy on his face is too contagious.  I'm such a sucker for my hubby. ha ha!  Or maybe it's because one new toy car equals some new something for me, ha ha!  Let's go with the sucker thing.

So, recap: my other half & a veteran blessing, a big birthday means a special party, police officer who collects toy police cars...did I mention he loves Legos, too?


I wanted to give my hubby a birthday he would remember.  He never really had a party like that as a kid -- with a theme, games, favors, friends -- and I wanted him to have that memory.

I decided on the theme {Lego Police}, designed the invites, planned the decor and food, invited friends and family, and got his favorite:  ice cream cake from Dairy Queen!

We couldn't resist making this shirt!

It was so much fun, and I think my hubby had a blast.  And I felt so blessed to have this guy a part of my life, to have all these people over that love him almost as much as I do, and to just celebrate life and love.


This Veteran's Day I'm reflecting.

I think it's very appropriate to honor vets so close to Thanksgiving, since November is now thought of as the "thankful" month.  In spite of all I lost last year, I have so much to be thankful for.

Thankful for instant messaging {you'll have to ask me about that one!}, for selflessness, for love.  Thankful for laughter, for memories, for birthdays.

Thankful for life.

I am thankful for my police-car collecting, kid-at-heart, law-enforcing veteran one-true-love.

And I am thankful for all the trying-to-protect-our-country, just-doing-their-job veterans who came before, and those still to come.

Next time you encounter a veteran/soldier/police officer/firefighter, tell them thank you.  They CHOOSE to put their lives on the line for YOU.  And they may not have someone in their life to treasure them.  Like I treasure mine.

They don't ask for the thanks.  And that makes them all the more deserving.

God bless you all!  And, thank you!


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