It's all good....(well mostly good - I need to teach him that a simple reply text to my early morning 'Happy Anniversary' one would have got a lot of husband points, instead of just returning my 4.10pm call....but anyway....working on it!)
Back to its all good, because it really is. I have missed him a lot since he has been away, but the space gave me time to notice how much I had changed since we first met. I have flourished, no doubt about it, and I know that it has been his constant love and support that has given me the confidence to stretch myself and to be more of what I know I can be.
The thing is, I know Michael knows it, and I know he feels super chuffed that he could be that for me. I really noticed it today sitting at church - I managed to get the kids all ready for church and be early/on time, I had a lesson to teach and I wasn't freaking out! Not to mention I am about start a full on semester at Uni and study up for a tax consultancy job mid-year - and I think I can do it!
In this past year I have had more growth than I have had in the last 7 years! Don't get me wrong, I have been strengthened by the trials, the heart ache, the loneliness, the bad (really bad) decisions - it has been refining for me. And I wouldn't be right here, right now, feeling this good without them. My life or my spiritual progression over the past 3 years (for me they are synonymous - if I am in a good place spiritually all areas of my life are doing well and prospering) reminds me of parts of the allegory of the Olive Tree taught in Jacob 5 (from the Book of Mormon - learn more about it here)...It is actually about the scattering and gathering of Israel.
And as they begin to grow ye shall clear away the branches which bring forth bitter fruit, according to the strength of the good and the size thereof; and ye shall not clear away the bad thereof all at once, lest the roots thereof should be too strong for the graft, and the graft thereof shall perish, and I lose the trees of my vineyard.
And there began to be the natural fruit again in the vineyard; and the natural branches began to grow and thrive exceedingly; and the wild branches began to be plucked off and to be cast away; and they did keep the root and the top thereof equal, according to the strength thereof. (italics added)
There was a time about 2 years ago when I was trying to rapidly progress with coming back to church, (I think it had to do with a boy *sigh* - Side bar: Ladies/Gents, do not let anyone rush you to be what you are not ready to be!! If they will not love you for who you are and where you are at - let them go!!) but still was not ready to let go of other parts of my lifestyle - needless to say I crashed and burned. Although it was hugely discouraging, the truth was...I just wasn't ready.
Now is different though - I do feel like my progress is equal according to my strength and I appreciate and love Michael immensely for sticking by me and letting me be me, taking my life at my own pace, and loving me all the while.
In my own funny, distracted way - this is my Valentine's/Anniversary gift to him - ME....evidence of the strength, beauty and goodness of our union.