Growing in Love... is the hard part. It takes patience, kindness, perseverance... so much more.
I have these two pictures on my shelf. One of them shows me so much younger. With the one I fell in love with. Before the growing.
We saw each other. We talked in firelight. Held hands on a bench. Talked of the future. Dreamt of the days ahead. Stood at a cross in the rain. We made promises. We had fallen. We thought we knew each other.
We stood there in a church and committed ourselves to stay together. To grow in love. I see that picture and smile. Smile at our innocence. Smile at those two who had fallen in love.
In the other I see an older version of those two. I see the lines in the faces, a little less hair on his head, hers a little darker. I see more than that. The things you can't see in a picture.
I see the stretch marks from carrying two babies. I see the jagged scar from the birth of one. And the scars on the two hearts of those who buried that same precious one nine years later. And all the years in between.
I see the laughter. Secrets shared. Battles won. And lost. I see the dreams still there and those that have died along the way. I see prayers whispered and shouted and left unsaid. The faith waivering and then standing strong.
I see the tears cried in the dark and the arms that held each other quietly because there were no words.
And I see that we have grown. In love. We are the same, but different. We are still learning each other. Still discovering the hidden parts. And growing in love.