16 years ago today I woke up excited and anxiously anticipating a day I had looked forward to for years. I was 21 and from about the age of maybe 5 I had been looking for the girl I was going to marry. If you don’t know - Riane and I met in 2000 at Dallas Baptist University. We were starting our sophomore year and she had just transferred in from LA Tech. We met shortly before school started - I was in the middle of chasing 4 girls at the time and Riane was being chased by who knows how many guys. I am proud to say that our first date was via her initiation, not because I was afraid of women, but simply because Riane has always been the person who just went and got what she wanted. And rarely does it not work for Riane… In all seriousness, Riane is truly a gift from the Lord (Proverbs 18:22). Not that she doesn’t drive me absolutely insane at times, but there are far more “wow” moments as I look back over the years.
It’s Friday and our anniversary - so I’m hitting you with a top 10 “what I love most” list.
What I love most about this woman:
- She is a ferocious lioness - Riane is a fighter, a provider and a phenomenal mother. I’ve rarely seen someone with more drive and purpose than Riane has for the roles she embodies and embraces. As a mother she has always fought for our children for the things they need and has never, I mean never taken “no” for an answer when comes to our babies.
- She is really really really good at what she does - Riane has a crazy unique ability to not only be “besties” with who’s she's with, but she also has the ability to make you feel special. Don’t get me wrong. Riane is good because she knows fashion on a level that most of us just don’t get, but she is even better with people. People love and trust Riane because she genuinely loves them and has their best interest in mind.
- Riane always gets her way - If there’s ever an issue with a bill, or a charge, or a reservation or not even an issue - just an opportunity for something cool to happen, Riane can make it happen. If I make that call, we typically are going to pay the extra fee and potentially going to have a side note on our file, but not when Riane calls. We are going to end up with something free and an extra bonus of whatever…
- Riane hates to work out - Now she loves the idea of going to the gym together, taking our selfies and posting some great insta stories, etc… But what you don’t see is that in between stories she’s typically finding new music, scrolling her socials and finding new ways to make me rack and re-rack all weights…She is by far the worst workout partner I’ve ever had. I thought this was a “what I love list”? - the point is: Riane loves to spend time together and do things that I love too. And even though she’s not a fan, she’s there anyways.
- She loves good food - My taste pallet has expanded so much, not because I’m so cultured but because Riane has always pushed for us to try new things, places, and encouraged me to get outside of my comfort zone.
- She loves to travel - Riane gets so so excited about going anywhere. She’s like an 8 year old on Christmas break leading up to the moments before opening presents. And then once a trip is over, she gets super depressed and needs at least 24 hours to recover from the fact that the trip is over.
- Her family comes before anything else - Everything Riane does with consistency is based on what our family needs. Period. Well, except maybe her coffee obsession. I don’t think it’s a family necessity but everything else, def. is family driven.
- She is a forgiver - Not to be confused with weak or timid. Ah heck NO. She is a stick of dynamite in a gasoline barrel, but she is also very quick to extend forgiveness and move on. Riane is such a lover of people and relationships that she does not hold on to things.
- Riane loves to share food - If you go to dinner with Riane, you are going to share with her. She wants to have some of what everyone else is having and she hates feeling like she is missing something if she just eats what’s on her plate.
- She can freaking dance!
It has been an incredible journey so far. We have 2 crazy fun kids. We laugh a lot. We don’t cry that much. And we’ve had a whole lot of fun. We are not perfect at this marriage thing, but we’ve found ways to make things work in the seasons we are in and it has been the greatest joy, honor, privilege of my life to be her husband and our kid’s dad. Life has not turned out exactly the way we thought it would, but regardless of the plans we made or the things that didn’t pan out… it all pales in comparison to being married to you and living the life we do. Love you Babe. Here’s to 16 and a whole lot more ;-)!