Remember the song Letter to Me? About the guy writing a letter to himself at 17? We loved that song didn’t we. It made so much sense to realize that everything may seem unmanageable right now, but it’s so awesome to know that we’ve made it through. The idea that we could go back and communicate, tell ourself to hang in there because it’s not that bad and actually really good. To be able to tell ourself to cherish that these are the good times.
Hold on to this next year. It’s going to be amazing. I know that you’re wondering right now if USA beats Canada tonight and Thursday. Whether they do or not is what determines how your year will be. I’m not going to tell you who wins. You’re going to have an amazing year. It’s going to be filled with firsts – seeing the Eiffel Tower, having friends come visit you in Germany, and of course your first wedding anniversary. I know, you want me to tell you if B is around to celebrate it, but what you have to remember is that you’ll be celebrating it on the day whether you are together or not and if you aren’t together then you’ll celebrate it the next time you are.
Enjoy this time. You two are childless and in Europe. You have an awesome dog that you can take with you. BTW, whenever a deployment does come up, you’re going to be so glad that the two of you decided to get a dog. He’s no B, but at least the house isn’t empty when you come home. You get to see so many amazing places in the next year. You and B have an amazing time together no matter where you go, no matter what you do, and no matter who else is with or around you.
I know you have some other concerns – yes, you and B keep getting better at communicating. All of your “practice” conversation nights really pay off. He learns to open up so much. You also learn to recognize what his opening up looks like. It’ll never be like yours – but that doesn’t mean that it’s bad. The good news is that the more you two talk about just general random stuff, the more comfortable you both feel about bringing things up. You learn how to address subjects without becoming defensive or putting the other on the defensive. You figure out each other’s moods and silences and trust me, life with B just keeps getting better.
As for the ex, if I remember correctly you came to a good turning point about it last night. You asked B about his friends travel plans and he included her in that list – though with the group he didn’t want to meet up with. You were so relieved because he friend-listed her and because he didn’t want to meet up with her in Italy because he wanted you all to himself there. Keep holding on to that feeling. Because it helps you not care if he does email her. You’re going to realize that it says more about him and his loyalty and her and her inability to let go than the other way around. And the honestly, the longer you are with B the more you learn that she was never a threat to you – it was always the other way around.
2011 and the years beyond it are going to be amazing. You and B are going to have so much fun. There will be trials. There will be hardships. There will be deployments that feel like they are never going to end. There are also going to be new friends, fun adventures, and long hours of just being husband and wife together. I’m almost jealous that you are in the past and get to live through those first few years of marriage again – except that it keeps getting better.