Photo taken two days before we were official. The awkwardness is palpable as we sit on the floor in my grandparents' living room.
In reality, we could say that the beginning was sometime before that infamous March date--what about my first day in college, Sept. 2, 2008, when we first crossed paths? We didn't even exchange words, so that doesn't count. Should I count from the day after Angel's graduation from college, May 24, 2009, the infamous first kiss? Well, that was a non-starter since I moved out of the country the next day. December 25, 2009 was the day Angel called me to wish me a "Merry Christmas!", and could possibly count as the beginning of something, since he called me an average of once per day from that date until we married (relatives were scandalized by my cell phone bill). But March 23, 2010--that's what I count from, because that was the day my parents gave us their approval (a requirement in my family).
I've been talking a lot of dates, and a lot of numbers in this post, so I figured I'd continue the trend with more numbers:
2 bikes purchased.
1 awesome bed (+2 mediocre beds)
3 roadtrips to Texas
2 new laptops (the ones we had pre-marriage died slow, painful deaths)
4 times Angel has flown to Malaysia
1 trip to Hong Kong Disneyland
3 jobs for Angel (Texas Nurse, Michigan Nurse, English Conversation Teacher)
1 real job for Rachel (not counting tutor, ironing girl and professor's assistant)
2 semesters of grad school (Angel)
2 minor league baseball games attended
1 argument resulting in the purchasing of a dollhouse by Angel for Rachel
4 kayaking outings (always a tandem kayak)
4 added family members (2 baby cousins, 1 sis-in-law, 1 nephew)
1 book, self-published
2 anonymous prank letters mailed to loved ones
9 dentist appointments each (I actually don't boycott dentists, who would have guessed?)
0 tandem bike adventures (something Angel has always wanted to do, but never succeeded in doing)
3 houseplants (Christmas Cactus, unidentified plant, mint plant)
I'm finding that the best memories aren't easy to capture numerically. How many hours of sleep have we lost because we were too busy talking the night away? How many bonfires have I danced around, Jack Sparrow-style, while Angel stoically reminded me to be careful? How many plates of nachos al carbon have we split?
I'm not that great at counting.
Picture taken 2 days ago.
In my teens, I found very idea of marriage incredibly frightening. I don't know why the thought of marrying Angel was never scary to me. From that very beginning, 5 years ago this week, when I dropped him off at the airport and he told me he hated PDA and I said "What's PDA?" and then he kissed me in front of all the airport strangers 15 seconds after explaining the acronym...it's always felt like we're just two good friends who decided that getting married sounded like the best possible choice. For us, it is.
P.S. For those who haven't been reading this blog since back when I was a starry-eyed newlywed, you can catch the one time I actually told the whole story chronologically in three parts here: 1, 2, 3.