“I want to thank my wife, who I don’t normally associate with Iran. I want to thank you for working on our marriage for 10 Christmases. It’s good. It is work, but it’s the best kind of work, and there’s no one I’d rather work with.” -- Ben Affleck accepting the Academy Award for Best Picture for his movie Argo (great movie by the way!)I read this article on Salon a few weeks ago and I can't get it out of my head. The Academy Awards are a distant memory to most of us other than when we look up a movie on Wikipedia in a few years we won't remember for long much that happened that night. And like anything else from that night Ben Affleck's comments of gratitude toward his wife (Jennifer Garner) are also quickly forgotten. But I heard them and noticed them and this article so well articulated the thoughts I hope he was thinking and that resonated in my heart in a rather surprising way--I think it was just nice to see the culture recognizing marriage in a healthy, normal way.
"Like many things in life, just because a relationship is good doesn’t mean it doesn’t take a hell of a lot of effort. In fact, the effort is the good part. The lovely, wedding day dream that love is enough and you’ll always feel perfect and splendid forever is just that – a dream. The day-to-day can be boring and irritating and yet often, in the midst of all it, that’s exactly when you feel most deeply at home within each other. And maybe someday, when your mate is at your mom’s for Thanksgiving or accepting an Academy Award for best picture, he’ll start acting in a way that’s weird and makes people uncomfortable. That’s when you think, oh, right. That’s what I love about him."Marriage is hard. It's hard work. It's worth it but oh it's hard. It's hard when you're happy and it's hard when you're sad. It's hard when you have everything and it's hard when you feel you've lost everything. But it's work that's worth it, it really is "the best kind of work."
And so today, to my husband who I work to love every day and will continue to work to love every day I am given, I wish you a happy birthday! This may be an odd way to say it but you knew I was crazy when you married me--and you are the greatest example I have on this planet of someone who loves me unreservedly whether or not I've given you reason to. In the last year you've shown more patience and love and gentleness to me than in the nearly six years prior--and that's saying something! Thank you for every night you've gotten out of bed to re-lock doors to make me feel safe, sat up with me and my tears and fears and patiently listened to me, for every meal you've made me or glass of water you've brought, for every extra five minutes of sleep you've given me. Thank you for working to love me and working to build our marriage in the most practical and yet heroic ways possible. May the year ahead of hard work in marriage, in your profession, in parenthood, and in life, be rich in our marriage and may God replace any tear we cry with joys unimaginable to us today.
i love you much(most beautiful darling) more than anyone on the earth and i like you better than everything in the sky // e.e. cummings