So, it’s your birthday. I know it’s going to be busy day, so I wanted to start off your day with these words:

You are on the right path. You are handling your business with integrity, and you are demonstrating the desire and willingness to make changes in your life so that you and your family are healthier, happier, and more connected. 

I am so proud of the way you have fought with yourself and chosen the better business path recently. Even though you’d have experienced far less stress if you had chosen to avoid certain business opportunities from the beginning, the magnitude of your decision wouldn’t be as meaningful as it is now. You have seen what others are receiving from the making the opposite choice, and you have passed this test by choosing integrity.

I am excited to see you break through this very busy season into a new phase of life. As you engage in rest, I see more of the woman I chose to marry and know for the rest of my life.

We are in the middle of a battle for our family and the type of future our children will enjoy. It’s difficult for me to admit this, because I wanted myself and our marriage to be so much further along. I daydreamed of catapulting our children into the relational/spiritual/vocational stratosphere, leagues beyond where you and I are. Instead, I sometimes wonder if we’ll be able to live up to the love and support our parents gave us.

I choose to build with you. I choose to discover with you. We’re both idealists. I get it. It can be a challenge to face reality when we expect life to live up to so many dreams and ideals. But I’m shedding my idealism in spades these days. Not that I’m not going to press on toward an ideal. I am. But I’m not going to live in disappointment like I have been because my current life doesn’t match the ideal I held in my mind.

When it no longer matters where we thought we’d be at this moment, we become free to be who we actually are. I’m just a guy without much influence who can grill a decent steak. Okay. Let’s build with that. Let’s be a family that owns our individual realities and savors each day within that.

Let’s do some things this year that really take us outside our comfort zone. By that, I mean, let’s savor some family time doing things that we’d normally be too timid or embarrassed to try. I want us to grow comfortable with publicly savoring the moment. With hearty laughter and dancing and singing and whatever else comes to mind.

Maybe I don’t change the world. Maybe I just manage to be present and milk that for what it’s worth with you and our children. That’s a pretty amazing place to start. Anything beyond that would be icing.

I am grateful to be in this moment with you. You are still the love of my life. I am so glad that you were born. I am grateful that God gave you to me.

You are a blessing to me. Moment by moment, we can be swayed by our emotions for good or for bad, but big picture, my life is trending toward good things and personal growth largely thanks to knowing you.

No matter what battles we’ve fought or problems we’e faced, I choose you. And I’m proud of my choice.

Love you,



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