You know you are celebrating your seventh wedding anniversary (as parents of three small children) when:
– you can’t go on a trip to celebrate because you have a two-month-old baby
– you can’t got to a restaurant more than 15 minutes away in case the baby that-takes-no-bottle gets hungry (Hurrah for Trio in Colleyville!)
– you can’t go out on your actual anniversary because you can’t get a babysitter that night (lol!)
– when you finally arrange babysitting, you make dinner reservations around the baby’s nursing schedule
– and when you are finally walking out the door for your anniversary dinner, your husband asks, “Want to take the suburban or the minivan?”
(I paused, then pleaded in my heels, “THE SUBURBAN. Please! Let’s take the suburban. It’s at least a little more romantic than a minivan.” Dave: “The suburban it ’tis, my love.”)
— with David Spina.
SEVEN YEARS OF MARRIAGE
SEVEN YEARS! Seven years ago today I married David Spina on a Saturday at Christ Chapel in Fort Worth, Texas. We had 11 bridesmaids, three junior bridesmaids, three flower girls, five house party girls and 500 guests – because everything is bigger and better in Texas, y’all.
I thought I could never be happier than the day I got engaged. But the wedding day was even better – dancing with my new husband on a wood dance floor with all our friends and family, celebrating God’s gift of marriage.
When we arrived to the Worthington hotel in downtown that night, our room key did not work. (When we inserted the key, it flashed red instead of green. LOL!!!) My feet were hurting from dancing all night, so I melted laughing, and sat down right there in the hotel hallway outside the hotel door, in my gigantic white wedding gown, while Dave trotted off in his tux to troubleshoot.
(Strangers passed by and tried not to stare at the new bride locked out of her room. I always like to play up awkward circumstances – i.e. did she and the groom get in a fight? So I smiled and waved gracefully to each person that passed by like a beauty queen in a parade, in my tiara and long white gloves.)
Dave returned 15 minutes later and sheepishly giggled, “Wrong floor.”
We left the next morning for Atlantis in the Bahamas. When we arrived, room service called to ask about delivering chocolate covered strawberries and champagne. But I hung up on them, saying there was no “Mrs. Spina” here. But then as soon as I hung up, I remembered that was now my new name!
When we returned from our honeymoon, David swooshed me up, and carried me across the threshold of our first home. Oh, happy day.
Seven years and three kids later, our life looks very different. This morning, instead of an anniversary trip hotel, we woke up, in our own bed, to our two-month-old baby crying. And in our own bed, two-year-old Esther had kicked us all night. Samson was asleep on the floor next to our bed, because he had a bad dream. And we were trying to make the 9am church service so we had cereal.
And we didn’t plan a dinner out tonight, because it’s almost not worth it when you have to take a fussy baby that doesn’t take a bottle. Ha! (We ARE going to go out later this week to celebrate…with a baby.)
BUT, I have to say this 7th anniversary is better than our wedding day. Why? So much life has elapsed and grown our marriage to a deeper level of beauty and strength. I love being a mother, but I truly love being a wife to my husband more. He’s my very best friend and favorite person in the whole world. He’s an incredible father, strong leader, disciplined dad athlete (he diligently works out six times a week!), successful businessman and he has a heart for the Lord.
Last week, he came to my first speaking engagement to support me. I was nervous, but there he was at the back of the room, filming my talk with his iPhone and giving me a “you can do it” wink. Then when my credit card reader had problems for the moms wanting to buy books, he stepped forward and took over – making small talk to alleviate the stress and used his phone manually to take the card numbers. I stopped while signing books and looked over at him, dressed in pressed slacks and a starched striped shirt, selling my books with a smile. How blessed I am to call this man my husband.
I love him to the moon and back, and I can’t wait for the delicious years to come. Happy anniversary, love!!!!
Romance looks different at different times in your life. For example, when I was dating David Spina, for our first Valentine’s Day, I drove up and there was David leaning against his hot, white BMW, with a gigantic stuffed teddy bear holding a red heart frame with our first photograph together inside. ???
(That was a good one, Spina).
But today? Seven years later with three children, age 5 and under? Instead of a small, fast luxury car, we drive a SWEET minivan. And romance? This is what romance looks like. When one of us is out, and the other one is holding down the fort at home, we often surprise each other with a coffee – he likes a dark roast, and I like an iced latte. We never text each other to see if it’s a good idea – WE ALWAYS WANT ONE. ??? And I have to say, I still get a little zing of emotion when Dave hands me my favorite drink with a silent smile. Cheers to#realliferomance!
Props to my hilarious and awesome husband David Spina(and apparently my first book model per this photo).
Today I asked him to leave an Amazon review for my book. An hour later he came back and told me he not only left a review, but he bought a book.
Me: honey, we just had 500 copies shipped to our house. You saw them. Look – all those big boxes by the front door?!?!?
Dave: I know. But I still wanted to support you. So I bought a book.
So apparently, we will soon have 501 books. I love you to the moon and back, Spina.
What’s it like getting ready for a fancy event with three young children?
1. You have to hire two babysitters – one stays home with the toddler and preschooler. And one comes with you because the nursing baby, that refuses a bottle, needs to be onsite.
2. You longingly finger your formal dresses, but have to opt for a looser, nursing-friendly one because you just had a baby two-months ago.
3. You lay out your dress, but must keep your nursing “uniform” (nursing tank full of spit-up, baby drool, and dirty toddler finger marks) on because you have to nurse before you leave.
4. You do your hair and makeup in advance, but wait until right before you walk out the door to put your dress on. Then you slowly make your way to the door, repeatedly chanting, “NOBODY TOUCH ME. NOBODY TOUCH ME.”
— at Gaylord Texan Hotel.
I am such a different baby mother with my third baby, Hannah, than I was the first two times around. I have a totally different perspective. Instead of resenting the constant baby needs and low productivity, I revel in it. I know, now, that this newborn season is so short and I don’t want to miss it. Like pausing every single time I change her diaper to get her to smile back at me. I don’t mind if she needs extra rocking, extra time or a little more cuddling. Babies truly grow too fast! Love you, sweet baby Hannah! Xo